Chris McDermott started Murder Mystery Players in 1996, following a period of time in which he acted in Murder Mystery evenings. Chris graduated with a degree in Education from Cambridge University in 1976, before teaching English in secondary school and then moving to Sweden, where he was a member of Clogs Mobile English Theatre and a teacher of English. Clogs performed at the Edinburgh Fringe festival in 1980. Chris has had over twenty plays performed in public, mainly Murder Mystery plays, including the play which opened the renowned Emirates Festival of Literature in 2014. Chris has also had a children’s play performed at the festival. He has had short plays performed as part of festivals in Dubai and at the Albery Theatre, in London’s West End. Chris has won awards as both a playwright and a director in England and Dubai, as well as prizes for his short story writing.
In addition to his experience as an actor, director and writer, Chris has extensive experience in education leadership, having been both a primary and secondary teacher and School Principal. He has delivered education leadership training in places as far-flung as: Nairobi, Kenya; Bangalore, India; Dubai, UAE; Dallas, Texas and England. Chris has been a National Leader of Education, and Headteacher and Principal of Outstanding schools in London and Dubai. Chris is married with three grown-up children. His family home is in Croxley Green, Hertfordshire.
Born in Liverpool in 1925 and educated at the Holt High, one of the grammar schools in the city at that time. He had an eventful war during which he was evacuated for a few months to Shrewsbury before returning home. He became a scout messenger during the blitz, a member of a Home Guard anti-aircraft unit and finally, for the last couple of war years, a Coder in the Royal Navy. After working in the offices of a large chemical company he was transferred to one of their factories in Cheshire, and has lived in the county ever since. He married, had a family of six children, all now grown up and independent. His wife, Marjorie, has his undying admiration for her unstinting devotion to bringing up the family. After taking early retirement, he ran a small training business for several years before a further change when he started writing short stories for publication and later some murder mystery plays for his son Chris’s excellent playwriting business. John has a won first prize in a national short-story competition for the magazine Scribble.
He says: “When I was growing up, we always had a selection of books in the house with authors such Charles Dickens and H.G.Wells. However, the two most favoured writers were Jeffrey Farnol and P.G.Wodehouse. I feel lucky to have been introduced to the Wodehouse books so early as I consider him to be the greatest comic writer in the English language. Whoever said laughter is the best medicine had the right idea and I’m sure it’s as much benefit to personal well-being as the recommended five portions of fruit and veg a day. Mind you, Wodehouse had his own unique slant on this when he remarked that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, providing it’s well aimed.”