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The New Albion Radio Hour: A Dieselpunk Opera, is a three act musical written by Paul Shapera. It follows the O'Brien family and serves as a sequel to The Dolls of New Albion. The musical takes place roughly 10 years after Solider 7285's rebellion and covers the falling city of New Albion as it plunges into civil war.

The album can be listened to here

The show features four singers who have the dominate roles of the play. The female lead of Constance is sung once again by Lauren Osborn. The main male lead is sung by Oliver Marsh who plays John O'Brien. The other female role is sung by Courtney Ellis, who plays Jacqueline O'Brien. The narrator of the play is Lloyd Allen, who is voiced by Paul Shapera.

The 1st Act covers John O'Brien and his life of misfortune as a super solider. The 2nd Act follows Constance O'Brien, a seductive thief who plans on toppling the government and their plans. The 3rd and final Act follows Jackie, closing the story with an all out battle.

Each act slowly leads into the next, leading up to the ultimate finale.


Act I[]

The opera opens with 1940s style instrumentals and a voiceover from a man who introduces himself as Lloyd Allan, the host and narrator of the New Albion radio hour, who is accompanied by the dieselpunk orchestra. (Overture) He than explains that the city of New Albion became a vicious police state, until Solider 7285 rebelled by putting a truth serum in the tunnels underneath parliament, sending New Albion into a ten year long Civil War between the government and the rebels. Tonight's episode of the New Albion radio hour covers the Battle of Cryer's Boulevard, which decided the outcome of the war, and the featured family the O'Briens. (New Albion 5) Lloyd brings the narrative to John O'Brien.

John is sitting in a pale green room underneath the city, watching two screens attached to mannequins, one of which plays a recoding of a young girl singing. John explains that years before his house was blown up by rebel bombs, killing his wife and destroying his home, and that afterwards he joined the government as part of their secret super solider program, which involved replacing humans insides with metal and wires. He ended up being the only survival of the program, and has to take two pills a day, one to live and to fight. He spends the rest of his time sitting alone in the room watching the screens. (The Green Room Pale) Lloyd's narration returns and he flashes back to when John first revived the offer to join the program. It's revealed that John was drunk at a bar when a man from the government approached him and manipulated him into joining by telling him it was the only way to avenge his wife. (The Pitch) It returns to present time and John recalls how, when he left, it involved him abandoning his daughter, Constance, as a young girl, and that Constance believes he's dead. John also dwells on the people he's killed and the lives he's destroyed since becoming a solider. (Daddy Left) Afterwards, Lloyd cuts to the Battle of Cryer's Boulevard, and explains that the government decided to have their super solider, John, infiltrate the rebels' underground headquarters and kill everyone he finds. John does this until he enters an isolated substation beneath the city, where he sees two men and a woman. He goes to kill the woman, but before he can he recognizes her as his long lost daughter, Constance. Instead, John turns around and attacks his own solders in order to protect his daughter. It's here where the first act ends. (The Operation)

Act II[]

The second act takes place over the same few hours as the first, but now from the point-of-view of John's daughter Constance, to explain how she ended up in the substation. Lloyd introduces Constance as an orphaned, low-class young woman whose mother died in a rebel bombing. He also explains that the divorce laws in New Albion's upper-class districts are extremely unfair to the woman, and that they often end with them on the streets and without food or shelter.. Constance is infuriated by the upper-class divorce laws, and has decided to become a thief, who intends soirees under the codename Inanna. While there, she flirts with men who have left their wives, steals their money, and brings it to the women they've abandoned. (The Thief)

Constance and her boyfriend Thomas are heading to one of the soirees. They've been hired to steal a device called the MCG, and after they steal they plan to use the money they make to leave New Albion and move to the Tusian Cost (Discussion 1) At New Albion's soirees, everyone always has a secret plan or scheme, and everyone there are trying to deceive each other. Constance finds her target, a man named Mark, and greets him. Mark offers Constance a special brand of cigarette, which she declines. She distracts him with dancing and conversation until she manages to steal the MCG. (The Soiree) Just than, solders burst in. They shoot Mark and explain that he was a rebel, and that they're searching for a thief who has the device they've been trying to get. Constance manages to escape with the MCG, but Thomas is left behind. Shortly afterward, a woman in a car calls for Constance to get in. It turns out to be Constance's aunt Jacqueline, who raised her after her parents died. Jacqueline reveals herself to be the leader of New Albion's resistance, who operate as a voodoo cult underneath the street, and are the people who hired Mark. Jacqueline gives Constance a map of the underground city and tells her to bring the MCG there. Constance refuses, pointing out that Thomas will be killed if she doesn't give the government the device, since he was involved with stealing it. Jacqueline tells Constance to think of the greater good, but Constance runs off instead. She goes back to soiree and finds Thomas, alive and well, and asks him how he escaped. Just than, armed guards step out from behind him. Thomas explains that he's been an undercover cop all along, and that it was his co-workers who hired her in the first place. He says that he doesn't want to hurt her, but that there's a war they need to win. He warns her that the solders will kill her unless she hands over the MCG, but she runs away again, with gunshots going off behind her. (The Bust)

Heartbroken, hunted, and without anywhere else to go, Constance heads to the underground city. She's being pursued by the government, but follows the map Jacqueline gave her to try to find the rebels, where she can than give them the MCG. However, she hears herself being pursued by someone and turns around to see none other than Lloyd Allan, the opera's supposed narrator. She recognizes him, but he refuses to acknowledge that they've met. She argues that she saw him at a radio broadcast, but he's able to get her to 'slip back into character', and forget she saw him. (The Underground) Constance sits in the underground tunnels and remembers her life up until that point. Constance's mother died in a rebel bombing, and her father disappeared soon after and was declared dead. Constance was raised by Jacquline, and spent her adolescence as an angry, troubled delinquent. She would spend every night out on the streets with other kids whose lives had been destroyed by the war. She was very close with a girl named Katy. However, when Katy's parents got divorced, her mother was left with nothing. Young Constance was horrified by this, and when no one else would step up, she got her life together and became a thief to avenge her friend. Constance remembers that, right before he father left, he sat by her bed one night and told her to never stay down and always fight back, but now she thinks she can't do that again. (The Wasteland) Thomas has followed her to the unground tunnels finally finds her. He tells her that he can help her. He explains that he did come to love and never wanted to hurt her, but that there are people in danger and they need to step up. He tells that they can get through this and be together. Constance refuses saying that he lied to her and deceived her from the beginning. Thomas says this isn't all that different from what she did to the men at the soirees. Constance tells him that maybe she deserves what he did to her, but that she loved him more than anything and he betrayed her. She even goes so far as to say she doesn't love him anymore. Right than, Jacqueline steps out from the tunnels and, seeing he's a police officer, kidnaps Thomas and brings him to the rebels' headquarters, much to his terror. Constance, having nowhere else to go, follows. (Discussion 2)

The resistance are made up of voodoo occultists, who sing songs that replace people's mind with spirits. They play their songs and recite their chants for Constance, explaining what it is that they do. They also use one of the songs to possess Thomas, until he's left incoherently singing 'dollay-dollay'. (The Voodoopunks) Constance brings to MCG to the voodpoopunk substation, where there are two men waiting to receive it. She tells them that she has lost everything she has, and that now she just wants to go home. Just than, the doors are blown down and a man storms in with guns. Constance screams, but a few seconds later recognizes him to be her father, John, who abandoned her. This is the same place the first act ended. (The Substation)

Act III[]

The third act opens several hours after the ending of the first two acts. Jacqueline and Thomas sit in the substation under the city, waiting to hear word from above. During this time, they share different stories from their lives. Thomas explains that he became a police officer to defend his mother, who was hurt by someone during the war, and Jacqueline tells him stories of when she was raising Constance. They still haven't heard word from the surface, and finally Thomas asks Jacqueline if she's ever been in love. (Waiting) Jacqueline tells him she was in love with a woman named Dorothy, who she met a bookstore. They were together for several years until one day governments officials came and took Dorothy away. Years later, Jacqueline found her again, but the government had lobotomized Dorothy and she didn't even recognize Jacqueline. This inspires Thomas to rethink his stance in the war. (The Best of Times) Finally, they hear from the surface. One of the voodoopunks warns them to get as far away from the city as possible, and Jacqueline says they need to figure out what's going on. Thomas asks what Jacqueline wants to do with him. Lloyd tells the audience that Jacqueline gives Thomas to the voodoopunks to be executed. Jacqueline, who can apparently hear the narration, refuses, saying Thomas doesn't deserve to die. Lloyd tells Jacqueline she has too, because it's part of the story, but she won't. Thomas asks Jacqueline what she did to the city. (Going)

Lloyd shows the audience a flashback to a few hours before. The government hired a military group called the Blood Red Dogs to attack the rebels and steal the MCG. It turns out Jacqueline had the voodoopunks possess Thomas so that they could broadcast the song with the MCG, and it would play in the helmets of the Blood Red Dogs, allowing their minds to disappear and be replaced by spirits. Thus meaning victory for the rebels. But, when the possessed Blood Red Dogs sung the song, it also hypnotized everyone who heard it, plunging New Albion into an apocalypse. (Blood Red Dogs)

Returning to the present, Jacqueline and Thomas arrive at the surface, but the only people they find who haven't been possessed are John and Constance. Jacqueline and John are brother and sister, but they were never close and haven't seen each other in years. They apologize for having never been there for each other. Thomas also apologizes to Constance for betraying her, and she tells him she's glad that the voodoopunks let him go. She points out that everyone in the city is obsessed with control. Thomas asks how she's survived so long without getting hypnotized, and she tells him that she and John spent the day walking and talking. Jacqueline, John, and Thomas decide they need to flee the city and that it's too late for New Albion. Jacqueline explains that she and Thomas were immune to the song since they'd already been possessed in the past, and that John was immune since he was cyborg. However, she says there's no reason why Constance is immune, but that she can there's something different in Constance's eyes. The others are set to leave, but Constance says they can't abandon everyone in the city, and goes over to the MCG. Thomas tells Constance that if she hears the voodoo song it will possess her, but she tells him to listen. (Reunion)

Constance sings a different song into the MCG. In the song, she describes a metaphorical version of her life; saying that she always tried to ignore the world around and tell herself a better story whenever anything went wrong. However, she says that when she saw John turn on his own guys to protect her, she realized that this was no way to live. She tells the possessed soldiers to join her in the real world, and 'wake up' like she did. (Storyville Station)

Lloyd tells Jacqueline that this is a ridiculous way for the story to end, and that the opera should be an epic tragedy. Jacqueline tells him the most striking stories are always the emotional ones, and they don't want a tragedy. Lloyd says that it would be heart wrenching if Constance died. Jacqueline tries to stop him, but Lloyd tells the audience that the solders see Constance, the most hunted thief in the city, and decide to kill her. Jacqueline tells John to protect Constance or she'll be killed. John says he won't let them, and tells the others to leave the city. He says that as Constance's father it's his job to die for her. Constance is reluctant to leave, but Thomas connives her to go. He says that all he's ever tried to do is keep safe, and that he can understand if she doesn't want to be with him, but that he wants to make sure she lives. She says she'll go with him, but that she's going to find a different way to fight other than thievery. At the last minute, Jacqueline decides to stay with John, since they'd never been close before. The solders shoot her, and in her dying moments she tells John she wishes they'd been closer as kids. The soldiers tells John to surrender, but he tells them to run or he'll kill them. (Finale)

Lloyd's narration returns. He explains that John died on Cryer's Boulevard, but he took the city forces with him. After the war, the eight districts separated, and New Albion, although still around, is broken and fractured. However, the voodoopunks are starting to resurface, which could mean a better future for the city. Lloyd says that Constance kept fighting until one day the upper class districts changed their laws regarding women. After that, Constance and Thomas left the city, and although no one is exactly sure where they went, they were last seen in the mountains to the west. (New Albion 6)

The reemergence of the Voodoopunks is detailed in the Atompunk opera, The New Albion Guide To Analogue Consciousness


Main Characters[]

Lloyd Allen - The Radio Host and Narrator

John O'Brien - The father of Constance and a government super soldier

Jacqueline O'Brien - The sister to John, and a Voodoopunk Priestess

Constance O'Brien - Thief trying to take down the government

Thomas - Constance's boyfriend and government double-agent

Side Characters[]

Blood Red Dogs - Government funded military force

Voodoopunks - A subculture religion fusing Haitian voodou and Celtic fae myths


  • NADS, a discord server for fans of Paul's work can be found here