Die Dreigroschenoper

Play with music after John Gay's The Beggar's Opera; in three acts.
German translation by Elisabeth Hauptmann.
Adaptation and lyrics by Bertolt Brecht.

Macheath (Harald Paulsen) in prison,
with Mrs. Peachum (Rosa Valletti) and Polly (Roma Bahn), Berlin, 1928.


Macheath (Mack the Knife), notorious bandit and womanizer, runs afoul of Jonathan Peachum when he marries Peachum's daughter Polly in a ceremony of doubtful legality. Peachum's resolve to have Mack sent to the gallows is complicated by the fact that Mack's old army buddy is the chief of police, Tiger Brown. Peachum and his wife commence a series of strategems to ensnare Mack: bribing prostitutes to turn him in, exercising their influence over the police, and ultimately threatening to ruin the coronation of Queen Victoria by having all the beggars in London (whom Peachum controls) line the parade route. Mack is imprisoned, escapes, and is imprisoned again. When his hour of execution arrives, however, a mounted messenger appears with the Queen's reprieve, which includes a baronetcy and an annual pension of 10,000 pounds.

Song list


Performance Information

English title: The Threepenny Opera
Cast: Singing roles - Street Singer, Macheath (tenor), J.J. Peachum (baritone), Mrs. Peachum (mezzo-soprano), Polly Peachum (soprano), Tiger Brown (bass baritone), Lucy Brown (soprano), Jenny (mezzo-soprano), Constable Smith, ensemble.
Speaking roles -- Filch, the Rev. Kimball, the gang of thieves, beggars, prostitutes, policemen.
Orchestra: alto sax (fl, cl, bar. sax); ten. sax (sop. sax, bn, bass cl); tpt; tbn (double bass); banjo (cello, guitar, Hawaiian guitar, mandolin, bandoneon); timp/perc (tpt 2); harmonium (celesta, piano).
Authorized Translations:
English - in all territories: Michael Feingold, outside the USA and Canada: Ralph Manheim & John Willett; Hugh McDiarmid; Robert David McDonald
French - Jean-Claude Hémery
Italian -- Emilio Castellani

Principal productions


LP CBS S 66239
LP Columbia 02S 201
LP Odyssey Y2 32977
LP Philips L 09 421-22
LP CBS 78279 (2 LPs)
CD CBS MK 42637
CD Bear Family 16019

Lotte Lenya, Wofgang Neuss
Günther Arndt chor
Sender Freies Orchester Berlin
Wilhelm Brückner-Rüggeberg, cond.
LP Telefunken 97012
LP Capitol / Telefunken P8117
Lotte Lenya, Kurt Gerron, Erich Ponto
Willy Trenk-Trebitsch, Erika Helmke
Conducted By Theo Mackeben
7 Dec. 1930
Teldec 9031-75025-2
Teldec 0630-13824-2
Teldec 39842 92812-2
Teldec Basic Edition 100è
Teldec 0927-42663-2

Pearl GEMM 9189
VAI 1193

LP Historia 625
CD MP Records
Pastel 201898

Capriccio 10 346 Enregistrements historiques
Philips 6768 700
CD Philips 426-668-2
Frankfurt Opera
Wolfgang Rennert, cond.
London 430 075-2 René Kollo, Ute Lemper, Milva, Mario Adorf, Helga Adorf, Helga Dernesch, RIAS Berlin Sinfonietta,
John Mauceri, cond.
Koch International Classics 3-7006-2 Waldemar Kmentt, Manfred Jung, Stephanie Myszak
Anelia Shoumanova
Bulgarian Radio Television Mixed Choir and Symphony Orchestra
Victor Symonette, cond.
LP Amadeo AVRS 6023
Amadeo 423 810-2
LP Vanguard SRV 2735D
LP Vanguard VRS 9002
Vanguard OVC 8057
Line Music (Cantus Classics) 5.00991
LP Majestic
LP Karussell 635130
Past Classic 2464866

Anny Felbermayer, Liane Augustin, sopranos
Rosette Anday, contralto
Helge Rosvaenge, Kurt Preger, tenors
Alfred Jerger, baritone
Chor und Ensemble der Wiener Staatsoper
F. Charles Adler, cond
A1.1 Helge Roswaenge Ouverture - Moritat Vom Mackie Messer
Akt 1
A1.2 Alfred Jerger Morgenchoral Des Peachum
A1.3 Alfred Jerger, Rosette Anday Anstatt Dass-Song
A1.4 Chor Hochzeitslied
A1.5 Liane Augustin Seeräuberjenny
A1.6 Kurt Preger, Frederick Guthrie Kanonensong
A2.1 Liane Augustin, Kurt Preger Liebeslied
A2.2 Liane Augustin Barbara-Song
A2.3 Various 1. Dreigroschenfinale
Akt 2
B1.1 Liane Augustin Pollys Lied
B1.2 Hedy Fassler, Kurt Preger Melodram / Zuhälterballade
B1.3 Kurt Preger Ballade Vom Angenehmen Leben
B1.4 Anny Felbermayer, Liane Augustin Eifersuchtsduett
B1.5 Various 2. Dreigroschenfinale
Akt 3
B2.1 Alfred Jerger Lied Von Der Unzulänglichkeit Menschlichen Strebens
B2.2 Hedy Fassler Salomon-Song
B2.3 Kurt Preger Ruf Aus Der Gruft
B2.4 Kurt Preger Grabschrift
B2.5 No Artist Gang Zum Galgen
B2.6 Various 3. Dreigroschenfinale
Polydor 543-563-2
Polydor 428 349-5
Helmut Qualtinger, Hannes Messemer, Karin Baal, Sylvia Anders,
James Last, cond.
Capriccio 60-058-1 Walter Raffeiner, Peter Nikolaus Kante, Ulrike Steinsky, Gabriele Ramm
The König Ensemble
Jan Latham-König, cond.
BMG 74321 66133-2 Max Raabe, Nina Hagen, Sona MacDonald
Ensemble Modern
HK Gruber, cond.
DG The Best of Dreigroschenoper
Dominique Horwitz
Armin Pokorn
Uli J. Messerschmidt
Wolfgang Ekholt
Film (Pabst, 1931)
- Français
- Allemand
Film (Wolfgang Staudte, 1962)
CD Telefunken
Curd Jürgens, Hildegard Knef, Gert Fröbe
Peter Sandloff (cond.)