Audio Play / The Dolls of New Albion
"Years before, a Monk and Gambler embarked..."

The Dolls Of New Albion: A Steampunk Opera is a 4-Act play composed and written by Paul Shapera. So far, there has only been a workshop performance, but the audio version of the entire play can be found here.

The Steampunk Opera follows four generations of McAlistairs, beginning with the Mad Scientist Annabelle, who is attempting to raise from the dead the love of her life. The story is told by an all-knowing Narrator.

The story is set in the fantastical Steampunk city of New Albion. Each act contains a song sung by the Narrator who describes the history and culture of the city. As each new generation passes, the city grows and evolves too, along with the people in it.

The other two parts of the trilogy, The New Albion Radio Hour and The New Albion Guide To Analogue Consciousness, are available for your listening pleasure. The entire albums are available here and here.


  • All-Knowing Singing Narrator
  • All Love Is Unrequited: The only character with a requited love interest marries her ex-fiancee when he threatens to keep her from her father, whom he just brought back from the dead.
    • Also, even though all of the McAlistairs are strangely in love with Jasper, Priscilla is the only person he truly loves back. It doesn't end well
  • And Now You Must Marry Me: Edgar blackmails Fay into marrying him after ruining her fiance by threatening to withhold her recently revived father from her.
  • Back from the Dead: Jasper. After Annabelle brings him back and then kills him because he asked her to, Edgar brings him back AGAIN.
    • All of the dolls in New Albion are this really.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Jasper, after four generations of begging for death, finally gets his wish—at the cost of Priscilla's life.
  • Breather Episode: The Ballad of the Monk and the Gambler is a fun and carnival-esque song separating the burning of Byron's love and the dystopian New Albion of Act 4.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Annabelle's notes.
  • City of Weirdos: Annabelle struts around New Albion with a life-sized mechanical doll and no one seems to care, probably because there is a lot of weirder stuff going on.
    Narrator: "New Albion today / With bustling streets, machines, cafes / And the nice, the wise, the eccentric and insane"
  • Cult: The Voodoopunks.
  • Death Seeker: Jasper is one thought all four acts. Eventually he gets his wish, but at the cost of Priscilla's life.
  • Dystopia: After Act III, New Albion becomes this.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Several songs are titled this way—"Annabel Raises the Dead", "Edgar Gets His Heart Broken", "The Suicide"...
  • Generational Saga: Each acts follows a new generation in the McAlistair family.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Edgar, big time. Destroyed the home and livelihood of the man his girlfriend left him for in order to make her desperate enough to give into his blackmail.
    Edgar: There's a man they call Sillof, and he once stole my girl. I want him destroyed, all he has in this world. His business, his home, and his carriage all crushed. I want him left penniless, face down in the dust!
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Priscilla sacrifices her life so Jasper can die (again).
    • Jasper stays alive, despite wishing to return to the afterlife because if he is caught, his entire family will be killed.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Amelia to Byron. Have I mentioned All Love Is Unrequited?
    • To make this worse for poor Amelia, Byron later does marry a lady, as the fourth generation focuses on his daughter Priscilla. Amelia is dead by then and even if she'd been alive, it would unlikely be happy for Byron at least...
  • Intellectual Animal: The cat burglars' "pet albatross Simon and a brilliant mouse named Sam."
  • Ironic Echo: There's like ten of these. Some of the more obvious examples:
    • When Priscilla dies, the Narrator reverses her lines from Annabelle has a Doll.
    • Also, Priscilla reverses Annabella's lines back in Annabelle Raises the Dead.
    • Jasper also mimics the "Be my angel" lines from Annabelle, which may be more or less ironic since he actually knew her and heard those lines.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: The exact process Annabelle uses to bring Jasper back to life is never said, but the line "With voltage I invoke!" seems to imply this.
  • Love Makes You Evil: Fay dumping Edgar for someone else does not make him happy.
  • Mad Scientist: Annabelle, of course, and Edgar as well, to a lesser extent.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: At the end of Act 3, Byron gives a speech to try to calm the population after the song being played by the dolls leads Amelia to kill herself. This involves telling them that they're pushing a doll into the position of Mayor and that their kids are all dancing each night with the dead.
    Narrator: "Kill the dolls! Kill the dolls!" everyone screamed.
    Byron: Now my friends just hold on, that is not what I mean!
  • Only Child Syndrome: All four generations of McAlistairs appear to be only children.
  • Revenge: Big time. Edgar makes this his life's mission after Fay leaves him. Once he succeeds, Fay vows revenge unto him.
    Edgar: One day, you will learn, and you will burn like my heart burns!
    • Soldier 7285 eventually vows this upon the government of New Albion after Priscilla's death.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Annabel/Annabelle/Annabella.
  • Steampunk: The Dolls of New Albion: A Steampunk Opera
  • Suicide by Cop: Priscilla sacrifices herself to let Jasper return to the afterlife by doing this.
  • Word of God: Paul Shapera has a blog where he sometimes gives extra background information about the world and the characters.
  • You Are Number 6: Soldier 7285.

Alternative Title(s): The Steampunk Opera