Brecht’s first major collaboration with Kurt Weill is now taken for granted as a masterpiece of twentieth century music theatre, but at its premiere it blew Berlin apart. It was modern, sexy, shot through with urgent, anti-capitalist politics, unashamedly shabby, full of hit tunes but with brutally honest or shockingly street-wise lyrics. A noisy hotchpotch of stock operetta characters, American jazz, John Gay’s eighteenth century world of thieves, pimps and whores recast in mythical Victorian London and all refracted through the feral prism of Weimar cabaret. Seventy-five years on it is still an explosive work. Its classic status has too often set it at a comfortable distance, but in the world of sports-shoe sweatshops and stockpiled food its questions still roar. Benedict Andrews’ new production, using Jeremy Sams’ brilliant new English lyrics, will unleash the beast.


Paula Arundell
Bob Bertles
Blazey Best
Nicholas Coghlan
Craig Driscoll
Anni Finsterer
Wayne Freer
Pippa Grandison
Alan John
Justin Kearin
Kris McQuade
Robert Menzies
Robert Morgan
Wayne Pygram
Terry Serio
Justin Smith
Simon Sweeney
Matt Whittet
Ursula Yovich


By Bertolt Brecht
Directed by Benedict Andrews
Music by Kurt Weill
Lyrics translated by Jeremy Sams
Book translated by Raimondo Cortese
Musical Director Alan John
Set Design Robert Cousins
Costume Design Jodie Fried
Lighting Design Damien Cooper