Kit was born in Nyasaland and was sent to England to be educated as a cathedral scholar at King’s Canterbury. From there he went to Clare College, Cambridge where he was a choral scholar under John Rutter and a member of the Footlights.
After producing arts documentaries at BBC TV Music and Arts, he left to write screenplays, including Maurice for Merchant Ivory, and The Vicar of Dibley. In 1982 he began working at the Comedy Store with Kit and the Widow, a two-man musical satire, and they were thrice nominated in the West End for Olivier Awards.
Kit first teamed up with James O’Connel when they wrote the musical Writing Orlando and were then invited to study Musical Theatre at Oxford under Stephen Sondheim.
As well as performing satirical cabaret as one half of Kit & McConnel, Kit has written a number of librettos, presented programmes for radio and TV and is a regular panelist on Radio 4’s Just A Minute. He was also named Writer of the Year for his column in Country Life.
After studying the organ, piano, flute and composition at the Royal College of Music, James travelled the world playing piano and performing in clubs, bars, hotels, and the casino in Monte Carlo.
Having written musicals with Kit and studied with him at Oxford under Sondheim, James has written three further stage musicals himself. He has also written incidental music for multiple theatrical productions as well as the musical scores for over 150 TV documentaries and dramas, and two feature films.
In 2004 James wrote and presented the Channel 4 documentary What Made Mozart Tic which explored the possibility that the composer may have had Tourettes Syndrome. In 2010 he published an astonishing memoir about his own experience of Tourettes, Life, Interrupted.
For a taste of Kit & McConnel, click here: