The Killer Question: will YOU be watching Just Some Theatre’s dark comedy thriller?

In the chair tonight: Just Some Theatre in rehearsal for The Killer Question

WHAT is The Killer Question? The answer will come on Saturday when Silence Of The Lambs meets Last Of The Summer Wine in Just Some Theatre’s dark comedy thriller at Theatre@41, Monkgate, York.

In the latest touring show from the Manchester company behind 2013’s Coward and 2017’s The Doppelgang, former game show champion Walter Crump lives for murder.

It was even his specialist subject on the nerve-shredding general knowledge quiz show The Chair, but did his obsession with death ultimately lead to his own? Inspector Black certainly believes so, and now Crump’s dopey widow, Margaret, finds herself in the chair, accused of her husband’s murder. 

However, as shocking details emerge concerning the events leading to Walter’s final head-to-head, it soon transpires that what started out as an open-and-shut case has turned into another game altogether: one of the cat and mouse variety, with more than one deadly twist in the tale. 

Will Inspector Black solve the mystery? Will Margaret be home in time for Countryfile? Who will prove to be the ultimate victim of The Chair? Questions, so many questions, but there will be one more: which actor will play which character? Saturday’s audience in the John Cooper Studio will decide.

Just Some Theatre’s poster for Saturday’s performance of The Killer Question at Theatre@41, Monkgate, York

Those actors in question in Dave Payne’s 95-minute thriller will be University of Central Lancashire alumni Peter Stone, Jake Urry and Jordan Moore, now settled into an autumn tour of Alex Tole’s production from September 18 to November 4.

“In 2019, we did a script call-out and received over 300 scripts,” recalls Peter. “We worked our way through them all – it took a very long time! – and then The Killer Question script turned up and we thought, ‘it’s brilliant, but it’s way out of our casting bracket’ because it features an elderly couple in their 70s and a retiring policeman.

“We’re all in our 30s, so it’s obviously a big stretch, but then we thought, ‘if we were to do it in a League Of Gentlemen style, then it would suit us. It turned out Dave wrote it after seeing an episode of Inside No. 9 [the BBC Two dark comedy series created by League Of Gentlemen’s Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton].”

Playwright Payne, “a fantastic Midlands-based writer and producer for BBC Radio 4’s The Archers”, brings “a lot of humour and style from that show”, as well as from his sketch-writing for the CBBC comedy Class Dismissed, to Just Some Theatre’s biggest project to date, working with director Alex Tole for the first time.

“When it came to choosing who we should each play, we all liked them all, and I rather foolishly said, ‘why don’t we all play all of them, with the audience getting to decide who we play each night?’.

“We all agreed, and that now gives the start a game-show feel, a quiz show-feel, where we give a brief introduction to ourselves and the characters, thought we don’t give too much away, and then the audience have to hold up a programme, with one face per page, to cast their votes for that night’s roles.

Just Some Theatre coming to grips with Dave Payne’s comedy thriller The Killer Question in the rehearsal room

“Because they’re three very archetypal characters, we each bring something different to them, but they’re all very loveable, though we do each have the same favourite! We all love playing Margaret.

“The other day I had to drive around Manchester dressed as Margaret – and yes, I did get some funny looks!”

After breaking down the fourth wall with that informal start, Just Some Theatre’s cast then “well and truly build it up again” for the mystery thriller. “That’s one of the challenges. It requires us to perform in two different styles,” says Peter.

Just Some Theatre will be making their Theatre@41 debut. “Alan Park, from the York theatre, saw the show on the Lowry theatre website, and said to us, ‘hey, it looks great, would you bring it over here?’,” recalls Peter.

“It fitted us perfectly because we needed one more date to complete the tour and we needed one in that area. York was perfect; we’ve always wanted to perform there.

“Theatre@41, being in a former church hall, will really lend itself to the grandiose, slightly off-kilter world we’re creating.”

Just Some Theatre working on a scene for The Killer Question

Like so many theatre companies, Just Some Theatre have had to skate their way through the cracks and crevices of these pandemic times, receiving an Emergency Response Grant from Arts Council to cover costs for six months.

“That meant we could look at how we were working and how we could employ others to work with us, and so we employed 50 creatives for a Forward Dialogue project: 11 writers; ten scripts; ten directors, and a sea of actors, working online as part of that first wave of Zoom theatre,” says Peter.

“The final piece that ‘won’ the event, was called Happy!, written by Charlotte Souter and directed by Amy Burns Walker, a familiar name to York theatre audiences.  They created something truly unique that was really fabulous to see, with one actor ‘passing’ the same prop via the camera to the other actor ‘receiving it’. Brilliant!”

Ironically, just before the Covid cloud descended, Just Some Theatre had been touring a post-apocalyptic comedy about The Four Horsemen, who teamed up to create their own little virus. “Then Covid killed off that tour halfway through, just as we were about to start doing some shows for Cheshire Rural Arts Touring, after doing our urban dates. By that stage, if someone coughed, everyone fell silent, though the show was supposed to be a comedy.”  

Tickets for Saturday’s 7.30pm performance of Just Some Theatre’s The Killer Question cost £12 at

More Things To Do in and around York as creative night market launched. List No. 49, courtesy of The Press, York

Big news! York artist Freya Horsley, right, and gallery co-director Ails McGee with Freya’s paintings Turning Tide and Liquid Light at According To McGee, York

BIG paintings, a night market, thrillers at the double, cookery chat, an anniversary celebration, a long-awaited Scottish return and a brace of comedians are the diverse focus of Charles Hutchinson’s attention.

Exhibition of the week: Freya Horsley, Contemporary Seascapes, According To McGee, York, running until October 11

ACCORDING To McGee is playing host to the biggest paintings the Tower Street gallery has ever exhibited: Liquid Light and Turning Tide, two mixed-media works on canvas by Freya Horsley.

The York artist is displaying a new series of seascape paintings depicting the Cornish, Scottish and north east coastlines.

“Her art makes you look twice because it has a calming quality and, like a good sunrise, it makes you go ‘wow!’,” says co-director Greg McGee.

York Creatives Night Market: Debut night of arts, crafts, music, food and drink at Shambles Market tomorrow

York Creatives Night Market, Shambles Market, York, tomorrow, 7pm to 10.30pm

POSTPONED at short notice on August 20, the debut York Creatives Night Market goes ahead tomorrow in a chance to browse art and products by independent traders.

Street food, drinks and music all evening are on the menu too for this free event, open to all.

The Rusty Pegs: Tenth anniversary concert at Theatre@41, Monkgate, York

Celebrating ten years on: The Rusty Pegs, Theatre@41, Monkgate, York, Saturday, 8pm

TEN years ago, York country band The Rusty Pegs formed, drawn from volunteers at the Monkgate theatre, who were asked to perform their debut gig there at a Raising The Roof fundraiser.

To mark a decade of making music together, the Pegs have decided to come full circle by performing an anniversary gig in the same place where it all started, this time launching the autumn season. Box office:

No mistaking Justin Currie: Del Amitri return with Fatal Mistakes album for first York gig since 2002

Long time coming: Del Amitri, York Barbican, Saturday, 7.45pm

DEL Amitri follow up the May 28 release of their seventh studio album, Fatal Mistakes, with a return to York Barbican after a 19-year hiatus.

Justin Currie’s Glaswegian band last played there in May 2002, the year they released their last album, Can You Do Me Good?.

“It’s been nearly 20 years since we toured with a new album, lord knows what took us so long,” says Currie. “The prospect of sprinkling our set with a few choices from Fatal Mistakes fills us with the sort of excitement that, for some men of our age, might call for light medication. We think the adrenaline will see us through.” Box office:

No smoke without ire: Scottish comedian Daniel Sloss blows his top at York Barbican

Comedy gig of the week: Daniel Sloss: Hubris, York Barbican, Sunday, 7.30pm

SUNDAY’S gig is third time lucky for Scotsman Daniel Sloss, whose October 3 2020 and May 8 2021 visits were ruled out by the accursed Covid.

Sloss, 30, has sold out six New York solo off-Broadway seasons, appeared on American television’s Conan show ten times and toured to more than 50 countries. Now, at last, comes his new show, with special guest Kai Humphries.

Look out for Sloss’s book, Everyone You Hate Is Going To Die (And Other Comforting Thoughts On Family, Friends, Sex, Love, And More Things That Ruin Your Life), from October 12. For tickets for Sunday, go to:

What’s cooking? Cookbook writer Yotam Ottolenghi finds flavour at York Theatre Royal on Tuesday

Flavour of the month: Yotam Ottolenghi, A Life In Flavour, York Theatre Royal, Tuesday, 7.30pm

CHEF, restaurateur and food writer Yotam Ottolenghi reflects on A Life In Flavour, provides cooking inspiration and signs copies of his “flavour-forward, vegetable-based” cookbook, Ottolenghi Flavour, after the show on Tuesday.

West Jerusalem-born Ottolenghi will be discussing the tastes, ingredients and flavours that excite him and how he has created a career from cooking.

Expect “unique insights into how flavour is dialled up and why it works, from basic pairings fundamental to taste, to cooking methods that elevate ingredients to great heights”. Box office: 01904 623568 or at

Dane Baptiste: Comedian with a chip on his shoulder at Burning Duck Comedy Club

The other comedy gig of the week: Burning Duck Comedy Club presents Dane Baptiste: The Chocolate Chip, The Crescent, York, September 23, 7.30pm

IN his own words, Dane Baptiste is now a “grown ass black man, too old to be concerned with chicken or trainers, too young to be considered a peer of Trevor McDonald”.

Has he got a chip on his shoulder? “Yes. A chocolate one,” says Baptiste, a south east London stand-up who once worked in media sales.

Noted for his boldly provocative material, he hosts the podcasts Dane Baptiste Questions Everything and Quotas Full. Box office:

The Rowntree Players’ poster for next week’s production of Agatha Christie’s Spider’s Web

Web of the week: Rowntree Players in Agatha Christie’s Spider’s Web, Joseph Rowntree Theatre, York, September 23 to 25, 7.30pm and 2.30pm Saturday matinee

DIPLOMAT’S wife Clarissa is adept at spinning tales of adventure, but when a murder takes place in her drawing room, she finds live drama much harder to cope with in Rowntree Players’ autumn return, directed by Howard Ella.

Desperate to dispose of the body before her husband arrives with an important politician, she enlists the help of her guests. 

In a conscious parody of the detective thriller, Christie’s Spider’s Web delivers suspense and humour in equal measure in an intricate plot of murder, police detection, hidden doorways and secret drawers. Box office: 01904 501935 or at

In the chair: Just Some Theatre in rehearsal for The Killer Question, heading to Theatre@41, Monkgate, York

Mystery of the week ahead: Just Some Theatre in The Killer Question, Theatre@41 Monkgate, York, September 25, 7.30pm

THE Silence Of The Lambs meets Last Of The Summer Wine in Dave Payne’s dark comedy thriller The Killer Question, marking the York debut of Manchester company Just Some Theatre.

Did The Chair game show champion Walter Crump’s obsession with death ultimately lead to his own? Inspector Black believes so, and now Crump’s dopey widow, Margaret, finds herself accused of her husband’s murder. 

Faced by more than one deadly twist in the tale, can Inspector Black solve the mystery? Will Margaret be home in time for Countryfile? Just as important, which actor – Peter Stone, Jake Urry or Jordan Moore – will play which character? The audience decides. Box office: