Welcome to our Featured Play Spotlight. Complex characters, excellent scene work opportunities and great for competitions – The Pretty Princess Dollhouse for Pretty Princesses by Emma Fonseca Halverson is an incredibly theatrical play for high school student performers.
Gabi wants to be a writer. Elena wants a family to love and a happy life.
Gabi wants doors – doors that open and allow her to leave. Gabi is suffering from metaphoric asthma. The walls are closing in and she can’t breathe. Elena knows the doors are there, she just doesn’t want to open them. She thinks the walls keep her safe. She thinks Gabi is living in a fantasy world.
Two friends, on the verge of their adult life, realize they have very different viewpoints on how they want to live. Excellent scene work for competition.
Why did we publish this play?
We first met Emma when she submitted her play Not Going Anywhere and knew we wanted to work with her again. Emma’s play The Pretty Princess Dollhouse for Pretty Princesses is Theatrefolk’s first commissioned piece. We gave Emma the criteria and left the rest up to her; she 100% delivered. I love the theatricality of play – you can go to town on the set or leave things very minimal. The two characters are well drawn and complex, this would be an excellent piece to draw scene work from for competition. We’re thrilled to have Emma’s play in our collection!
1. Why did you write this play?
I wrote this play to demonstrate an internal struggle between two opposing desires. The desire to stay with what is familiar and good, and the desire to take the risk for more. This is something I can relate to, as I know many of my teen peers can relate to, as we must make life changing decisions at such a young age, the pressure and conflict can be very real.
2. Describe the theme in one or two sentences.
The theme of this show can be interpreted in different ways- but I would say it’s about yearning- for one another. and for the ‘right’ answer.
3. What’s the most important visual for you in this play?
The most important visual in my eyes is the candlelit set. Although designers do not need to use real candles, a dim lighting will create a stark contrast to the abrasive lighting at the end, and sets the tone for the production.
4. If you could give one piece of advice for those producing the play, what would it be?
One piece of advice I would give to anyone producing this play is to add your own personality! It can be as simple or as flashy as you would like.
5. Why is this play great for student performers?
This play is good for student performers because it is simple enough to be a classroom project, yet the themes are ones that many teens may be able to find some relatability in. I hope students can see themselves in these characters.
6. Do you have any advice for people looking to perform this play online or socially distanced?
This play can definitely be performed online! My peice of advice is focus on the characters, and no set at all can work perfectly fine.