Runs from Saturday January 13 2018 to Sunday January 28 2018

Approximate running time: 1 hour and 15 minutes


Potrero Stage
1695 18th Street
San Francisco CA 94107

Performance Notes

written & performed by Michael Phillis

Dolls is the story of a man’s life as seen through the eyes of the dolls he has collected from adolescence to old age. It is the Day-After-Christmas (also known as Orientation Day for toys) and a group of freshly-unboxed dolls (the audience) awakens in their new home – the colorful and unpredictable world of the United Shelves of Frank’s Collection. During their Orientation Day tour, the new arrivals meet a diverse array of doll characters that include an unstable porcelain Southern belle, an openly gay action figure, an embittered Barbie knock-off, and a reclusive wedding cake figurine. As the story of Frank’s life unfolds, Phillis uses monologue, movement, music, and a few action figures to create and embody a unique and utterly original doll society full of unforgettable characters. A humorous and thought-provoking allegory, Dolls uses a toy story to explore the very real, very human themes of political strife, racism, classism, homophobia, and self-acceptance. The Bay Area Reporter called the World Premiere production of Dolls “a magical solo show … that pretty much encompasses the entire human experience … in just 70 minutes, and without a single human character ever uttering a word.” Time Out New York gave Dolls 4 stars, calling it, "amusing, imaginative, and perfectly suited to its intimate Fringe stage.

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