Murder With Grace

by  Leon Kaye

Full Length Play, Dark Comedy  /  5m, 5f

Two young women plot to kill one of the young women's potential sister in law. The girl is horrible and has a high pitched laugh that can make you shudder.

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Murder With Grace

by  Leon Kaye

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    5m, 5f
  • Duration


    75 Minutes
  • SubGenre


    Farce, Mystery/Thriller, Period
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Appropriate for all audiences
    • Adult
    • Senior
    • Pre-Teen (Age 11 - 13)
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

Set in the early 19th century, Murder with Grace tells the story of Grace, who is horrified when her brother is betrothed to Naomi, a shallow, silly girl whom Grace cannot stand to be around. She is loath to think that Naomi will soon be her sister-in-law, and so she and her good friend Beth devise a plan to manipulate Naomi by convincing her that another, much more affluent, young man named Henry is interested in marrying her. They set the plan in motion before they have actually met Henry, and it works too well - when Grace finally meets Henry, she falls head over heels for him! To make matters worse, Henry returns Naomi's attentions! It seems that Grace's only alternative would be to murder the wretched girl - that would not be very mannerly... but what alternative does she have? A dark comedy that will have even the most stoic of audiences in giggles.

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MURDER WITH GRACE: A Jane Austen Inspiration
by Leon Kaye
November 2, 2014

Breaking Into a Premiere
by Michael Williams Jr.
October 16, 2014


Love, Marriage


Performing Groups

  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Reader's Theatre


  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $75 per performance



  • Time Period: Victorian (British and American), 19th Century
  • Duration: 75 Minutes
  • Setting:

    1800s England. The era of Jane Austen.

  • Additional Features: Not Applicable
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes


  • Musical Style: N/A (Not a musical)
  • Vocal Demands: N/A (Not a musical)


5m, 5f
GRACE NEVILLE - Grace, seventeen, cannot withstand impropriety or imperfection. While an idiotic comment may run off others like rain water, it gnaws at Grace, causing her much vexation. Smarter than anyone around her, she feels she can manipulate and outwit all to achieve her goals; peace and tranquility.
BETH HOBBS - Taller, prettier, and just as smart as Grace, Beth, nineteen, is Grace’s accomplice and even mentor in deception. But Beth is more ruthless and seems to have no conscience.
HENRY HUNTINGTON - An enigma. Henry, twenty-five, tall and handsome, seems gallant and sociable. But it is a learned behavior, a mask Henry wears the few times he is in public. His emotions run deeper, and immaturity remains from his lack of interaction. Thus, he gets easily hurt, often walking out of the room or loudly proclaiming his opinion.
NAOMI TOURNEAU - Beautiful and thin, Naomi is as shallow as a rain puddle, and not as intelligent. Her interests are; money, jewelry, clothing, and home furnishings.
ELEANOR HUNTINGTON - Eleanor, fifteen is the typical gawky, plainlooking, approval-seeking teen. In Grace, she finds a sisterly figure and role model, seeks desperately for Grace’s close companionship.
COLONEL HUNTINGTON - The Colonel, fifties, has seen everything and nothing could really shock him. Though he looks every bit his age, he relishes the company of young women, complimenting them at every turn.
JOHN NEVILLE - John, twenty-one, fair but expressionless, seems to have no emotions at all. He too is not exceptionally bright.
MR. NEVILLE - Although an attorney, Mr. Neville, late forties and amiable, does not seem overly educated. The home’s patriarch, he seems very comfortable in his position.
MRS. NEVILLE - Mrs. Neville, forties, delights in John’s future bride probably because she is even more dim-witted, if that is at all possible. She is either elated or wretched with despair. There is no middle ground.
CONSTABLE - A very precise, clear thinking man in his fifties. He dislikes the aristocracy, and worst of all -- those who manipulate the system.
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Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast
  • Features Teens
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)
  • Parts for Senior Actors



Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye has written several short plays published with Brooklyn/Heuer and Playscripts. His three published full lengths are with Samuel French.  Check out the articles on the breaking-character site. Murde ...

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Murder With Grace premiered with Southern Union Community College in Alabama on February 26, 2014. The second production was at GOOD HOPE Country Day School in November 2014.

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