It Could Be Any One Of Us: Frequently Asked Questions

Alan Ayckbourn's Archivist Simon Murgatroyd answers some of the most frequently asked questions about Alan Ayckbourn's It Could Be Any One Of Us. If you have a question about this or any other of Alan Ayckbourn's plays, you can contact the website via the Contact Us page.

Can It Could Be Any One Of Us be performed without the random murderer?
Yes. Whilst the play was written with the intention that the murderer is randomly determined each night on stage, there is nothing to stop productions making the decision before hand for the evening, although that does reduce much of the play's appeal. However, it can and has successfully been done as a 'set' text lacking the random element.

Is it possible to perform the original version of the play?
It Could Be Any One Of Us was revised in 1996 by the playwright to - notably - alter the play to include a murder; this seemingly required essential part of a murder-mystery was omitted from the original production. Alan Ayckbourn views the original version of the play, premiered in 1983, as unsatisfactory and not up to the standard of the later revised version. As a result, only the revised version is available to produce and the original version has been permanently withdrawn.

Is it possible to read the original version of the play?
Yes. A copy of the original manuscript for the world premiere of the play in 1983 is held in the Ayckbourn Archive in the Borthwick Institute for Archives at the University of York.

With regard to the music played by Wendy on the piano, is it available?
Actually, there is no set music. For both productions directed by Alan Ayckbourn, the actress playing the role just made up the music as they could both play the piano. They created silly, simple tunes for the productions and no record was kept of them. Alan Ayckbourn encourages productions to follow the same pattern and just to create something for the show,

All research for this page by Simon Murgatroyd.