New Hamilton-based theatre company One Question are debuting Jean Paul Sartre's iconic psychodrama No Exit at The Meteor for a three-night season running July 16 to 18.

The Meteor will serve as host to the souls of the damned as they lie, cheat and bargain their way out of the inferno… guaranteed to provoke thought and have audiences leaving with a question or two.

Infamous for coining the phrase "Hell is other people", the show follows Estelle Rigault, Inez Serrano and Joseph Garcin played by local actors Hannah-Rose Cook, Ruby Brett and Liam Hinton.

The trio find themselves inexplicably trapped in a room outside of time, wondering if they're in a waiting room before the real torture begins? Or if it has begun already.

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"Tapping into the really quite black comedy and wit of Sartre's script has been a lot of fun," says Hinton.

"The characters all have their moments of absurdity, but it's balanced so carefully with moments of stark reality in a way that makes your skin crawl."

This play, since its creation in the 1940s, has often been adapted and served as inspiration for many stories.

Most recently, the hit Netflix comedy series The Good Place, whose first season was directly inspired by No Exit.

An essential work of 20th century existentialist writing, One Question aims to revitalise the play for Hamilton audiences old and young.

"The twisted, one-sided nature of perception and the lack of agency in how you're seen by others. It's something that many people struggle with every day, sometimes without knowing," says director Jack Knowles.

"We're hoping to bring a little light to that struggle, both in a cathartic and humorous way.

"Perhaps Hell is not as simple as it seems. What if there are no racks and red-hot pincers? Maybe Hell is other people… You'll have to come see No Exit and decide for yourself, for Hell lies within the eye of the beholder!"

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• No Exit: July 16-18 at 7.30pm at The Meteor Theatre. Tickets: $15 General Admission, $10 Concession. More information: and to purchase tickets visit: http://themeteor.co.nz/event/no-exit/
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