UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State Centre Stage will present Qui Nguyen's "She Kills Monsters," Oct. 8–17, at the Playhouse Theatre on the University Park campus, with co-direction by Sebastian Trainor and Erik Raymond Johnson. The production is one of enormous scale, requiring two directors, two costume designers, three choreographers, more than 125 properties, and a 16-ft. dragon head.
A comedic romp into the world of fantasy role-playing games, "She Kills Monsters" tells the story of Agnes Evans as she leaves her childhood home in Ohio following the death of her teenage sister, Tilly. When Agnes finds Tilly’s "Dungeons and Dragons" notebook, however, she stumbles into a journey of discovery and action-packed adventure in the imaginary world that was Tilly’s refuge. In this high-octane dramatic comedy laden with homicidal fairies, nasty ogres, and 1990s pop culture, acclaimed playwright Qui Nguyen offers a heart-pounding homage to the geek and warrior within us all.
Dramaturg and Penn State theatre student Mary Rosalind Valentine said, "Because of 'Dungeons and Dragons' players’ reputations as outcasts, the gaming community draws a lot of outcasts in, as 'She Kills Monsters' demonstrates. Outcasts can be the most accepting of other outcasts because they know what it’s like not fitting in. But whatever real-life obstacles may be in your way, in 'Dungeons and Dragons' you can play a character who pushes past failure and hardship to become a legendary hero, and it’s truly empowering. That search for empowerment through geeky pop culture is a search that playwright Qui Nguyen pursues through the New York City theater company he co-founded, the Vampire Cowboys. Their mission statement is 'to create and produce new works with an emphasis on action/adventure and dark comedy with a comic-book aesthetic.'”