Annual Paper Theater Festival

It’s the smallest show on Earth!

A full production in a scale model theater is featured, much like was done in the Victorian Era (when families gathered, after hours of cutting & pasting, to bring a play to life). Performance takes place Thursday, August 25 at noon, with an encore performance immediately following at 12:30 p.m. on the lower level, West wing of Geisel Library at UCSD.

Paper Theatre was a popular Victorian Era educational toy. These colorful scale model theaters were cut and pasted together from posters promoting specific playhouses or plays. The paper doll characters included were often in the likeness of popular actors of the era and were costumed as seen in the actual stage play. Distinctive architectural elements of the historic playhouses were meticulously recreated on the paper sheets of these scale-model promotional kits, including accurate miniature backdrops. Scripts, translated into several different languages, were included in these kits, showing the international popularity of these toys.

An exhibit of Victorian Era replicas and modern takes on paper theater is featured in the UCSD Arts Library the day of the paper theater performance. This year’s featured play, about shape-shifting folk legends of Hawaii, will be performed in a tiny replica of a 1922 theater still active in downtown Honolulu called the Hawaii Theater.

About this production:
Annie Flager of UCSD’s Pan-Asian Staff Association helped write and will perform this paper theater play along with readers Nancy Relaford and Glen Motil. Live music is provided by UCSD alumnus Scott Paulson. UCSD alumna & artist/playwright Miriam Manning created the play and built the replica theater for this production.

For more information, contact Scott Paulson at (858) 822-5758 or

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