While Broadway is dark, we’ve decided to shine a light on entrepreneurs who are finding brilliant, creative ways to bring the magic of theater into our homes. Meet Monica Hammond, the creator of Broadway Murder Mysteries. Our Broadway Roulette team played her inaugural game last week, Bullets on Broadway, and had a blast! Broadway Spin sat down with Monica to hear about where the idea came from, lessons she’s learned along the way, and what’s next for Broadway Murder Mysteries.
Broadway Spin: Where did you get the idea for Bullets on Broadway in the first place?
Monica Hammond: I have been writing and hosting murder mystery parties for the last eight years every Halloween and they’ve always been such a huge hit with my theater friends. So, when COVID-19 came along and suddenly the majority of Broadway talent was out of work, I knew we all needed something fun and theatrical to do from home. I looked at the other murder mystery companies out there and knew I had a unique angle and that my marketing background would really help get this business off the ground. That’s when I decided to write my Broadway-themed murder mystery game, Bullets on Broadway, and hire a Broadway actress to voice to narrate.
BS: How long did it take to go from your first idea to the official launch of Bullets on Broadway?
MH: Well, that’s a funny story. I’d originally started working on Bullets on Broadway almost a year ago and life just got in the way. But, when COVID-19 hit just as my wife and I were in the hospital welcoming our first son into the world, I decided now was the time to get this off the ground. So I worked on this from the hospital and the few weeks after late at night and got this whole company launched in roughly two weeks! My background is marketing and branding so I had a blast putting this all together. (FYI: Monica’s impressive resume includes working on the Tony-winning revival of Once on This Island and Deaf West’s Spring Awakening, among others).
BS: What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned since launching?
MH: Honestly, the biggest lesson I’ve learned since launch is how supportive and engaged the theater community is and I wish I’d done this sooner. I’ve also learned that you should always have more than one thing to sell, because I’ve increased my average order value by 50% since launching my second mystery “Murder Under the Big Top.” As of May, we’ve sold over 1000 games and the feedback from players has been so uplifting!
BS: You now have two games to sell — what’s next? Are more in the pipeline?
MH: Oh heck yes! I’m currently working with playwrights on a murder mystery spoof of The Tiger King, and a camp-themed mystery for kids. And I’m writing a new Drag-themed murder mystery that I’m super excited about, and you might just see a RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant play the detective role 🙂 The goal is to launch a total of 5 mysteries by July, and have 10 ready for Halloween.
I’m also working on building a Murder Mystery membership that allows people to have access to ALL our mysteries and some exclusive ones that we won’t be selling, along with other fun perks that will be ready in time for the Holidays later this year.
Use Broadway Roulette’s exclusive code BR10 for $10 off your order from Broadway Murder Mysteries and you can thank us later 🙂