Henry Herbert

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Henry Herbert (c. 1879–1947) was an English stage actor and producer.

Not to be confused with Henry Herbert, a performer for the D'Oyly Carte Principal Repertory Opera Company (1908-13).


Born Henry William Leonard-Herbert, the son of Henry Lawrence Leonard.

He began as a performer for Ben Greet's Company and later with Sir Frank Benson. He went on to manage Benson's No.2 Company on tour for a number of years, he and his wife playing leading parts.

He married to actress Gladys Vanderzee, with whom he had worked for many years, on 29 June 1907 in St Stephens Paddington, London.

The couple eventually settled in New York, Henry making an impressive career for himself on the American stage. According to the Wikipedia entry on him, Herbert is likely to have also worked in film, credited as Henry Hebert.

Contribution to SA theatre, film, media and/or performance

He and his wife Gladys Vanderzee arrived in the Cape in 1912 and gave a boost to classical theatre, playing in works such as She Stoops to Conquer, Macbeth, The Rivals, and A Midsummer Night's Dream.

In 1911, and again in 1913, Henry Herbert and his Stratford-on-Avon Players presented many of Shakespeare's plays in the main South African towns.

Later, in 1921, Henry Herbert returned to Cape Town to do a full-length Hamlet, which started at 6 pm and finished at midnight. According to Stopforth, "those who saw it vowed that it did not drag for a minute" (215).





Rohan Quince, "Crinkles in the Carnival: Ideology in South African Productions of The Comedy of Errors to 1985", Shakespeare in South Africa, Vol.4, 1990/91, 73-81

Shakespeare in South Africa -- page 3 The earlier twentieth century The Leonard Rayne Era

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