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By Liam O'Rafferty

Underbelly, Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2016
Upstairs at the Gatehouse 2017
Hamburg Tour 2017
OFFIE nominated for 'Best Director' 
About the piece

Set in a high street bookshop, this uplifting musical follows assistant Atticus Smith, a talented but lazy writer who lives avidly through his novel’s characters until the arrival of the spirited and audacious Lilly. 

Despite the instant dislike for each other, Lilly forces Atticus to face the reality he lives in and learn from the world he’s created in his novel. 

Set in two parallel worlds, 1940s Russia and modern day, the contemporary pop-folk score guides you through a tale of love passion and betrayal among books.



"One of the most groundbreaking shows I have seen in a long time, pushing boundaries, Paper Hearts is exactly what the musical theatre world needs...

Clearly a directorial feat and Tania Azevedo has inspired the actors to play the space confidently, encouraging touching moments of vulnerability that sometimes go amiss in musicals."

West End Wilma


"Beautifully directed by Tania Azevedo. An outstanding, multi-faceted, moving and beautiful new musical"

Musical Theatre Review


"Stellar direction. Marvellous piece of new musical theatre"

London Theatre 1 


"Lyrically laden with literature references...

Stunning direction of Tania Azevedo" 

 Edinburgh Guide


"An elegy to the printed word, the cast’s perfect execution of O’Rafferty’s concept certainly wins over this paper heart."

Ed Fringe Review


"Tania Azevedo’s direction is nothing short of spectacular" 

 TV Bomb


"It’s touching, full of heart and soul, brimming with talent and a pleasure to watch." 

 Broadway Baby

Creative Team

Director | Tania Azevedo

Musical Director and Orchestrator | Dan Jarvis

Choreographer | Lindsay McAllister

Associate Choreographer| Nick Stuart

Set and Costume Design | Anna Driftmier

Stage Manager| Sophie Johnson

Lighting Design | Clancy Flynn

Sound Design | Joshua Robins

Producer | Moon Rock and Denise Koch



Atticus Smith - Adam Small

Lilly Sprocket - Gabriella Margulies

Norman/Isaak/Violin - Matthew Atkins

Yanna/Alex - Sinéad Wall

Roger/Volga - Alasdair Baker/ David Mullen

Ensemble/Bass - Alec White

Ensemble/Cello - Eleanor Toms/ Jessica Pardoe

Ensemble/Violin - Amy Gardyne/ Ella Vize

Ensemble/Percussion - Ben Boskovic

Ensemble/Guitar - Joel Benedict

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