Think of all the times you’ve argued with your mother and thought,
“I could just kill her!”
What if one day, she asked you to do exactly that?
(But told you not to tell your two sisters...)
Marion Wolcott, has invited her daughter Ally, and granddaughter Kat, to visit her Martha’s Vineyard home. Ally, a frazzled single mother, is looking forward to taking a break from the monotony of her life, and from dealing with her sullen, uncommunicative teenager. But Ally soon learns she’s not in for a relaxing seaside vacay when her mother delivers life-shattering news.
Marion has a terminal disease and is counting on Ally (“the Strong One”) to help her die with dignity when the time comes but not to share this news with her siblings. Complications arise when Ally’s sisters—Beth, a charming thrice-married narcissist, and Joanne a dour mega-church devotee—arrive for a weekend visit. When Marion’s end-of-life bombshell unexpectedly explodes, the disclosure triggers a drunken evening and a series of revelations, accusations, and unexpected consequences.
Joanne is furious at Ally for even considering their mother’s request and privately vows to bring Marion to the Lord before it’s too late—even if it means kidnapping her. Beth, indignant at not being asked to join “the kill team,” is busy doing a furtive inventory of her mother’s personal effects and imagining the redecorating possibilities of her future inheritance. Ally just wants everyone to get along and to leave her the hell alone. And Kat? Harboring a troubling secret of her own, she's doing her best to remain under the radar. But her grandmother has other plans.
KILLING MOM is a fast-paced and moving family drama that tackles the issues that perplex us all: family dysfunction, aging, mortality, and the eternal quest to be the most favorite child.
PLAY DEVELOPMENT History
Playwright Megan Smith-Harris conceives of, researches, and writes preliminary scenes for KILLING MOM. She begins the process of workshopping individual scenes at Theater Artists Workshop (TAW), located in East Norwalk.
A 20-minute stand-alone scene from KILLING MOM is entered as a one-act play into the Bijou One-Act Play Competition, judged by legendary playwright, Terrence McNally. The play is selected as one of two semi-finalists and invited to present a staged reading presented to Terrence McNally and Tom Kirdahy, a Tony- and Olivier Award-winning producer, and in front of a live audience. The play wins first place and a cash award and McNally and Kirdahy provide insightful critique live on stage. McNally says, "You must expand this into a full length play because clearly, the audience is hungering for more."
KILLING MOM has a private staged reading at TAW for an invited audience of professional colleagues and theater professionals who provide critical feedback. Structural changes, editing, and other revisions are made.
KILLING MOM has another private staged reading at TAW for an invited audience of theatre colleagues and friends. The performance receives a standing ovation. Revisions are made.
KILLING MOM receives a Staged Equity Reading at ACT of CT located in Ridgefield, CT in front of an audience of 150 people. The play is directed by Tim Howard and receives a standing ovation.
Auditions for KILLING MOM take place and a great cast is assembled. The play is scheduled to debut at the American Theatre of Actors (ATA) in May 2020.
COVID-19 derails the world and along with it, the premiere of KILLING MOM. The production is postponed until September 2020.
The global pandemic continues. Broadway is shuttered until 2021. The Fall production of KILLING MOM is canceled.
KILLING MOM is honored to be included on the 2020 Kilroys List.