Program: 27 Ways to Say Goodbye, New Works Reading Series

27 Ways to Say Goodbye

a sapling growing through barbwire, and the title "New Works"

Content Warning

Subjects of:

  • Death
  • PTSD
  • Child abuse
  • Self harm
  • Suicide

Gunshot sounds

Playwright's Note

27 Ways to Say Goodbye is a love letter to all the people I know who have lost parents. It’s for the parents I know who struggle, the women I know who constantly have to “be brave”, and inspired by the loss of my dad and my aunt eight weeks later.  This play is a call to all the multigenerational families of siblings and large groups of humans who grow up together that we don’t have to be perfect or close, and we don’t have to do things the way other people in families do.  Because nothing is ever going to look right or be perfect.

Thank you to my wonderful director, Erin, and the amazing crew that supported this little reading with so many big technical asks.  Thank you to the brave cast for diving in and embracing a tough play that asks more of an actor than a play ought.  And thank you to the audience for enduring a play in development.  The next time you see this performed it will likely be a bit different.

Coach I love you and miss you every day.  Buggy I wish you could see this too. 

The subject matter of this play reminds us of the struggles of so many experiencing mental illness and the challenges that ensue.  Please take note of the following resources if you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts or in need of help:



Leah Shannon


Peter Bauer


Sarah Fitzgerald


Anna Olsen


Hope Winsor


Wilson Loucks

Dolly Parton

Emily Burner


Izzy Laws

Special Thanks

to the disAbility Access Center for live closed captioning!

Production Team


Kamarie Chapman


Erin Kraft

Assistant Director

Katie Ginther


Madison LeFever

Stage Manager

Sophia Tuell

Production Stage Manager and Virtual Technical Director

Clara King

Production Manager

Savannah LeCornu

Company Managers

Mark Kuntz, Kamarie Chapman

Sound and Props Design

Jack Harbick

A person wearing a backpack sits on a log over a lushly forested river, looking up the river

I want to acknowledge that this virtual gathering and celebration is being produced by this Western Washington University on the ancestral homelands of the Coast Salish Peoples past and present, and honor with gratitude the land itself and the people who have stewarded it throughout the generations. This calls me to commit to continuing to learn how to be a better steward of the land I inhabit as well.

It is important to acknowledge the long-standing history that has brought us all to reside on the land, and to seek to understand our place within that history. Land acknowledgements do not exist in a past tense, or historical context: colonialism is a current ongoing process, and we need to build our mindfulness of our present participation. It is also worth noting that acknowledging the land is Indigenous protocol.

I would also like to recognize all the people who have built, created, and died in the process of this society being what it is today. The diasporic actions of the Euro colonizers have created damaging ripples in those communities that still require action to be taken.

Here in Bellingham Washington we recognize the Lummi, Semiahmoo and Nooksack tribes and their neighboring stewards the Samish, Stilliguamish, Sauk-Suiattle and Swinomish tribes.