Subtitled "The Assassination of an American Goddess," the play is being promoted as being about "the great love of Marilyn's life—and the truth about her death."
Monroe died in 1962 at age 36. The official cause of death has been accepted as suicide by pills, but that determination has been questioned by biographers.
The reading is directed by the playwright, whose other plays include When You Comin' Back, Red Ryder?; The Wager; and Prymate. The cast includes Frank Dicopoulos, Lena Georgas, Chris Payne Gilbert, Aaron Hernandez, Jessica Medoff, Edward Stanley, Erin Sullivan and Robert Wuhl.
According to production notes, the play is "a dramatic depiction of recorded interviews and conversations producer Dennis D'Amico had with Lena Pepitone over a three-year period of time. Lena was Marilyn's best friend, confidant and seamstress for the last six and half years of her life. Medoff's subsequent play adds startling insight into the twilight years and death of an American icon."
Medoff issued a statement saying, "The Marilyn I've invented is a permutation rarely considered credible. The impetus once I got into creating the lives of Lena and Marilyn was the life they lived together. The love and confidences they shared remained secret until Dennis [D'Amico] sat down with Lena in her 80s, toward the end of her life. The revealed secrets have been reinforced by a source who, as a boy, was very close to certain decisions made that affected Marilyn directly. Those who made those decisions are people our culture has held in esteem for over half a century, but were, like so many of our ostensible heroes, sadly and pitifully unworthy of adoration." Rob Hinderliter and Dominick LaRuffa, Jr. of R&D Theatricals (All the Way, Deaf West's Spring Awakening, An American In Paris) in association with Dennis D'Amico are producing the reading. The general manager is DTE Management. The production stage manager is Bonnie Panson.