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Duluth Playhouse Underground presents the 2024 What She Said Festival

Duluth Playhouse Underground today announced the playwrights, directors, and performers featured in its annual new play festival.

Running May 9-12 at The Lab, the 2024 What She Said Festival promises an incredible evening of collaboration and exploration for theatre enthusiasts, showcasing the diverse perspectives and voices of women in the arts.

“This year's theme of Undaunted brought in over 200 submissions from playwrights around the globe,” said Kendra Carlson, the festival director. “We had some passionate readers gleaning through the stories until we narrowed it to 20 finalists – these were sent to our directors who helped narrow to our final 6 plays – two of which are from Minnesota playwrights. The utility of the intimate venue The Lab will allow actors and audiences to really focus on the stories and words of the playwrights as they bring these tales of Undaunted women to life.”

 Selected Plays

A Brush with a Gentle Giantess 

Written by Robin Berl; Jessup, MD 

Directed by Brittany Paasch 

Featuring Tom Maloney, Karen Niedermier, Molly Stonesifer 

A mother and father attend their adult daughter’s art show. For an elephant.

Duels & Détentes 

Written by Marguerite Arbogast; Minneapolis, MN 

Directed by Sarah Gardner 

Featuring Elsa Persson, Karen Niedermier, Beth Schroeder 

Magic gone awry allows three witches to be undaunted in pursuit of what they want.

Can You See Your Toes 

Written by Naomi Brecht; Minneapolis, MN 

Directed by Nicolle Sabatke-Orson 

Featuring Cassandra Schwantz, Arielle Seibold 

Two college students find themselves stranded in the dorm showers.

The Female Gaze 

Written by Jillian Blevins; Rowley, MA 

Directed by Carrie Mohn 

Featuring Maryn Hakes, Katrina Pierson, Cassandra Schwantz 

A reimagining of the Medusa myth.

Night Vision 

Written by Maggie Gallant; Austin, TX 

Directed by Paulina Jurzec 

Featuring Sarah Gardner 

Facing her fears, Molly sits alone with her seeing-eye dog in a park on a Saturday night.


Written by Kathryn Ryan; Bronx, NY 

Directed by Sara Jane Baldwin 

Featuring Cathy Berggren, Elsa Persson, Sara Vallie

A mother drives her daughter to meet her birth mother.

 Tickets are now on sale. To book seats, visit the box office at the NorShor Theatre Monday through Friday 10am-5pm, call 218-733-7555, or visit:

What She Said Festival

May 9 - 12, 2024

Thursday - Saturday at 7:30 pm and Sunday at 2:00 pm

The Lab at the NorShor Theatre

213 E. Superior St., Duluth

Creative Team:

Festival Director: Kendra Carlson

MC: Sara Marie Sorenson

Duluth Playhouse offers exceptional entertainment, training, and performance opportunities in theatre arts that inspires, challenges, and engages the region we serve. Founded in 1914, the Playhouse is one of the nation’s oldest non-profit theatres. Producing year-round seasons packed with plays and musicals, Duluth Playhouse also provides the community with year-round programming within our School of Performing Arts for youth and adults alike.