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Hello Kitty Syndrome carol.png

art by Carol Lee (@art_droppings)


k*tty syndrome

full-length play

some tags:






HK - nonbinary, any race

4 ensemble members - gender neutral, any race

um. hi. this is my first time doing this. i wasn’t gonna put my name in the bowl and then i was like, “why not,” and then, um, okay, i’m rambling.

thanks for having me.

my name is happy. or hk. either one works.
but don’t capitalize it
because i’ve recently discovered that i don’t like capital letters
they are so arbitrary
i remember thinking when i first discovered bell hooks
that it was so pretentious to do that to your name
was it for attention?
i think some people didn’t take her seriously because of it
but now i think:
isn’t it more pretentious to believe that my name
out of all the words -
should be capitalized?
more than the words:



"Hello Kitty is not a cat. She's a cartoon character. She is a little girl. She is a friend. But she is not a cat. She's never depicted on all fours. She walks and sits like a two-legged creature.” - Sanrio

HK is a little lost. They just quit their job as a police officer, broke up with their cowboy-partner, and made a vendetta with their brother-in-law. They find themselves caught in the throes of a family drama, noir, and romance. And worst of all, nobody will stop commenting on the fact that they are wearing a Hello Kitty™ mascot costume (but it’s slightly off because of copyright laws). The world spirals out of control as the stagehand won’t stop fucking up and the ensemble can’t remember who they’re playing. Eventually, pretenses, including capital letters, are trashed.


2020 Residency at King Street Station, Seattle Office of Arts and Culture

Covid-19 Artist Response Grant, 4Culture

Tennessee Williams Scholar, Sewanee Writers' Conference 2021

production history

FEBRUARY 17-25: h*llo k*tty syndrome @Syracuse University in the LOFT Theater

Reading, Vashon Repertory Theatre, July 24th, 2022

dir. Jéhan Òsanyìn w/ Aviona Rodriquez Brown, Taece Defillo, Sydney Maltese, Chris Boscia

Workshop, 4Culture, Seattle Office of Arts and Culture, Parley Productions, January 29th, 2021

dir. Jéhan Òsanyìn w/ Aviona Rodriquez Brown, Maya Burton, Taece Defillo, Quetzie Taborga-Reyes, Minna Lee

hello kitty syndrome banner.png

acknowledgements + sources of inspiration

in the interest of acknowledging that this play-thing would not be here without these works, individuals, and support:

  • all the love to Sanrio® and Hello Kitty™ herself

  • For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide / When the Rainbow Is Enuf (Ntozake Shange)

  • Twin Peaks (David Lynch)

  • Cloud Nine (Caryl Churchill)

  • Suzan-Lori Parks's essays: "Possession," "An Equation for Black People Onstage," and "From the Elements of Style"

  • Lykke Li

  • friends/collectives at Parley and Karen's Secret Army who read and talked this through with me before i was even ready to confront the becoming i felt within me

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