Side hustles. It’s seems like everybody has at least one these days. For Minerva Ross, the way to escape the doldrums of her graphic design job in Washington, DC, is to write and narrate her own feminist true crime podcast about how and why women commit murder. Meanwhile, across the country, Felicity Evanston, a Mormon stay-at-home wife and mother—and Minerva’s high school nemesis—has just started selling ridiculously patterned leggings for the multi-level marketing company Linen & Fate, as much as a way of having something that’s just hers as to supplement her husband’s income. The two haven't crossed paths in years, but when the bubbly and unassuming Felicity snaps and realizes the only way to get ahead in a rigged pyramid scheme is to literally start killing off the competition, both women suddenly experience the kind of overnight success they’ve been so desperately craving—but risk losing their families, freedom, and very souls in the process. MLM IS FOR MURDER (OR, YOUR SIDE HUSTLE IS KILLING US) is an of-the-moment story about capitalism, feminism, work-life balance, and pop culture told using parody podcasts, emoji-strewn dialog, Facebook Live videos, and polyester-spandex murder weapons. It begs the question: How much are you willing to give up to get everything you’ve ever wanted?
“Bavoso dramatizes how we lose out when our primary passion in life is our career. Felicity and Minerva push through huge obstacles to improve their lives through new jobs, but at the cost of losing a whole lot more. Bavoso has done his research: this is a finely plotted, strongly detailed script with terrific roles especially for women actors.” — Steven G. Martin
“With scathing views of capitalism, Bavoso aims this dark comedy at MLMs, the Mormon church, urban ennui, products, sales, modern technological information exchange, and macabre fascinations, for a frighteningly fair version of the American Nightmare. Discussions of outsourcing, formative life events like private school childhood, feminist affairs, the burgeoning need and fear to create something of one's own, spousal disappointment, and much more, navigate a tale of domestic sabotage, treachery, and myth making. Variously witty, polemical, astute, the drama takes wild, progressively daring turns when two characters' desperate, hyper ambitions take personal offense. A play that keeps upping the ante.” — Ricardo Soltero-Brown
• Reading, NextStop Theatre Company, Herndon, VA, 2019
Read the latest draft of the script on the New Play Exchange.
Listen to a themed playlist on Spotify.