PICK Me Up Theatre's York premiere of the award-winning Thrill Me: The Leopold And Loeb Story will star George Stagnell and Sam Hird at the atmospheric York Medical Society, in Stonegate, from January 15 to 18.

Last summer, Stagnell and Hird wowed Edinburgh Fringe audiences with their respective solo shows Private Peaceful and Songs From A Shropshire Lad, and while in Scotland they found time  to catch Stephen Dolginoff’s "astonishing musical" and decided they "had to do it".

Thrill Me, featuring book, lyrics and music by Dolginoff, is based on the true story of Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, the so-called “thrill killers” who murdered a young boy in 1924 in an attempt to commit the perfect crime.

York Press:

George Stagnell, back, as Richard Loeb, and Sam Hird, as Nathan Leopold, in Pick Me Up Theatre's Thrill Me. Picture: Matthew Kitchen Photography

First staged in an off-Broadway production in New York City by James Morgan's York Theatre Company, Dolginoff’s show examines the relationship between the two wealthy and highly intelligent teenage Chicago law students who carried out what newspapers called “the crime of the century”.

Stagnell plays Loeb, who is obsessed by the philosophy of Nietzsche and believes himself a “Superman” above the law and the rest of society; Hird plays Leopold, who in turn is obsessed with Loeb and becomes his willing accomplice, prepared to do anything for him in return for his love and attention.

Together, they sign a contract in blood and plot the perfect murder for the thrill of it, but their plans start to unravel when the police discover Leopold is the owner of a pair of distinctive glasses found at the murder scene.

"This intense and intimate two-hander focuses on the twists, turns and shifts of power in the relationship between Leopold and Loeb as it tells their story in flashback," says Pick Me Up publicist Joanna Hird. "Dolginoff says the musical is 'less about the murder they committed and more about what we're prepared to do for the person we love: things we wouldn't do on our own'."

York Press:

For the thrill of it: Sam Hird, left, and George Stagnell as Leopold and Loeb, two Chicago law students planning the perfect crime

Stagnell’s past roles with Pick Me Up include Czolgosz in Stephen Sondheim's Assassins, Dakin in Alan Bennett's The History Boys and Patsy in Monty Python's Spamalot, and additionally he has directed productions of Les Miserables and Dogfight.

Hird has previous with Pick Me Up too, playing Jean Valjean in Boublil and Schönberg's Les Miserables; Anthony in Sondheim's Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street; the Balladeer/Lee Harvey Oswald in Assassins; Scripps in The History Boys; Freddy in Lerner and Loewe's My Fair Lady; Jack in Sondheim's Into The Woods; Ritchie Valens in Buddy, The Musical and Marlow in Oliver Goldsmith's She Stoops To Conquer.

Pick Me Up's production is directed by artistic director Robert Readman, with musical direction by Sam Johnson, who provided the music for Stagnell and Hird's Edinburgh Fringe shows last August and was musical director for Pick Me Up's My Fair Lady last autumn too. Sound and lighting is by Adam Moore from tech 247.

Tickets for the 7.30pm performances are on sale at pickmeuptheatre.com