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'She Kills Monsters,' opening Dec. 1, explores girl geek culture

Monday, November 27, 2017

LAWRENCE — “She Kills Monsters,” an action-packed and comedic play written by Qui Nguyen, will open Friday, Dec. 1, at University Theatre. Audiences young and old will enjoy the play, but it will especially appeal to gamers.

The role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons is used as the framework for the story of Agnes, a young schoolteacher who connects to her late sister by following her sibling's footsteps through the adventure and fantasy of D&D. Add to that a good mix of music and imagery of the ‘90s, and this play is fully rooted in pop culture.

“As the semester winds down, I assure you this production delivers an experience you won’t want to miss. It’s a heart-warming story infused with acceptance, understanding and a sense of humor,” said Jason Bohon, director and KU visiting assistant professor. “Agnes finds a way to move forward in her life through a culture she barely knew existed.”

University Theatre’s production of “She Kills Monsters” will be performed in the round on Stage Too! inside of the Crafton-Preyer Theatre. Audiences will be close to the stage, “a great vantage point to get swept up into the action,” Bohon said.

Tickets for “She Kills Monsters” are on sale now at KU ticket offices and online at www.kutheatre.com. Tickets are also available by calling the University Theatre, 785-864-3982, and the Lied Center, 785-864-ARTS. Tickets are $20 for adults, $19 for senior citizens and KU faculty and staff, and $10 in advance, $15 at the door for KU students.

Members of the cast and crew include Sarah Van Zwoll, Overland Park senior, as Agnes; Becky Phelps, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, sophomore, as Tilly; Hunter Hill, Sabetha sophomore, as Chuck; Brandon Hedger, Mansfield, Texas, junior, as Miles; Natalia Sarmiento Acosta, Bogota, Colombia, senior, as Kaliope/Kelly; Abbey Lynn Smith, Altamont senior, as Lilith/Lilly; Lusie Cuskey, Louisville, Kentucky, graduate student, as Vera; Elsa Bernauer, Leawood sophomore, as Narrator/Farrah; Stella Garibaldi, Kansas City, Missouri, freshman, as Evil Gabbi; Teagan Fitzpatrick, Overland Park senior, as Evil Tina; Jakob Reitz, Seneca sophomore, as Orcus/Ronnie; Matthew O’Brien, Kirkwood, Missouri, sophomore, as Steve; Visiting Assistant Professor Jason Bohon, director and fight choreographer; Kate Smeltzer, Prairie Village graduate student scenic designer; Liz Mitts, Lawrence senior, lighting designer; Chelsea Pitts, Topeka graduate student, costume designer; Nathan Traxler, Topeka junior, sound designer; Amy Billroth-MacLurg, fight choreographer; Sarah Stowell, Scottsdale, Arizona, freshman, assistant director and dance choreographer; Gabrielle Smith, Lansing freshman, dance choreographer; Charlotte Nodarse, Leawood, senior, dramaturg; and Emily Hunsucker, Boca Raton, Florida, sophomore, stage manager.

“She Kills Monsters” includes adult language and fantasy violence. It may not be appropriate for all audiences. Strobe lights and water-based theatrical fog are used during the production.

The Department of Theatre is one of four departments in the School of the Arts. As part of the KU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the School of the Arts offers fresh possibilities for collaboration between the arts and the humanities, sciences, social sciences, international & interdisciplinary studies.

For more information on the Department of Theatre visit www.theatre.ku.edu. For more information on the University Theatre, visit KUTheatre.com. Follow KU Theatre on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram