Kristina Bedford, B.A. (Hons.) M.A.
B.A. Hons. (with High Distinction) in English, Drama & French -- 1980-84, Trinity College, University of Toronto, Canada (specialisation: English Drama before 1642). Faculty Scholar 1980 through 1984. Recipient of the Dickson Scholarship in English, French, History & Latin (1980-81); the L.C.A. Hodgins Scholarship in English Language & Literature (1981-82); the Sir Gilbert Parker Scholarship in English Language & Literature (1983-84).
M.A. in Drama & Theatre Studies -- 1984-85, Royal Holloway College, University of London, England (specialisation: Shakespeare in Performance). Expanded version of thesis published in 1990 (see below).
(Non-fiction) Author in the fields of Literary & Theatre History, and Family & Local History, including "'This Castle Hath A Pleasant Seat': The Shakespearean Subtext to The Castle of Otranto" (article, English Studies in Canada, 1988); Coriolanus at the National: "Th'Interpretation of the Time" (book, Associated University Presses, 1990 -- this work cited in multiple editions of the play & related works since its publication); "'On Both Sides More Respect': A Very British Coriolanus" (commissioned chapter for the book Coriolanus: Critical Essays, Garland Press, 1994); "Patrick Brontë's Lost Landlords" (article, Brontë Studies, Vol. 33, March 2008); Eltham Through Time (book, Amberley Publishing, November 2013); Woolwich Through Time (book, Amberley Publishing, February 2014).
Documentary Archive Research & Photography
"Finding Your Roots" Season 2 (2 Episodes) & Season 3 (2 Episodes), Ark Media for PBS; "Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies" (Episode 2), Ark Media for PBS; "Finding Your Past" (1 Episode), Lion TV.
Member of the Association of Genealogists and Researchers in Archives (A.G.R.A.); Member of the Society of Genealogists (SoG -- not in itself a professional qualification); Full Member of the Writers' Guild of Great Britain (W.G.G.B.) since 1990.
My early working life stemmed directly from my university studies, with a first year course in Anglo-Saxon leading to seasonal stints as a research assistant at the Dictionary of Old English during my undergraduate years, and my theoretical M.A. research at the National Theatre leading to a practical job there backstage, which financed the building of a professional literary portfolio. I became freelance in the mid-1990s, providing editorial, research, and report-writing services to both individuals and institutions, including script assessment for various West End and Fringe Theatres, such as The Shaftsbury, Theatre Royal Stratford East, and The Gate, where I read plays in translation and the original French. The transition from literary & theatrical to historical research has been a gradual one, as I found myself increasingly turning to genealogical resources as first port of call for factual verification; this coincided with breakthroughs in my personal ancestral investigations which led back to my first love, time-wise, the Mediæval and Renaissance periods. Since then, I've become proficient at transcription of the various legal & court hands used in early wills and manorial records, and became the Mediæval French and Latin transcriber/translator for the Historical Documents wing of Transcription Services Limited in early 2010, while finalising preparations to launch my own independent concern, to pull together my separate freelancing skills under one roof. Ancestral Deeds is the result.
My own Family History
My Finnish mother's family has a centuries' old tradition of passing on its genealogical heritage to the next generation.
To say my English-Canadian father's side did not would be an understatement -- there wasn't a tangible clue that predated 1905. This has made them a lifelong addiction, though I'm still looking for those two little 'hits' which will shoot me back from 1647 to 1370. Still not as far back as my mother's paternal line goes, but the search will be ongoing ...
In the absence of a personal pic, I'm the image of my more photogenic vaari (Finnish maternal grandfather, below right). Walking alone in Helsinki as a shy eighteen year-old who didn't speak the language, I was stopped in the street by a stranger who addressed me in English, saying "You must be Torsten's granddaughter".
My Grandparents ...
The New World often unknowingly preserves the traditions of the Old. Thanks to my paternal grandmother (top left), I had no idea such a thing as frozen Yorkshire pudding existed until I moved to England. And she was a Kidderminster girl.
My 1 x Greats ...
I'm always interested to hear from anyone who shares a connection with the handsome rogues' gallery above.