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The Threepenny Opera

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Based on John Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera, as translated by Elisabeth Hauptman, The Threepenny Opera, is the sly musical story of Macheath (“Mac the Knife”), a magnetic con man who does whatever he can to avoid the hangman in a world of betrayal, backstabbing and sexual barter.

Credits

Creative team

Book and lyrics by

Bertolt Brecht

Music composed by

Kurt Weill

Based on

Elisabeth Hauptmann’s translation of John Gay’s The Beggar’s Opera

Book translated by

Michael Feingold

Lyrics translated by

Jeremy Sams

Directed by

Ron Daniels

Directed by

Ron Daniels

At the American Repertory Theater Ron Daniels has directed Hamlet, The Seagull, Dream of the Red Spider, Cakewalk, Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2, The Cherry Orchard, Henry V, The Threepenny Opera, The Tempest, and Long Day's Journey Into Night on the Loeb Stage and Silence, Cunning, Exile and Slaughter City for the A.R.T. New Stages; he was also associate artistic director of the A.R.T. and director of the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University from 1992 to 1996. Mr. Daniels was a founding member of the Teatro Oficina in São Paulo, Brazil, where he was born. In 1977, he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company as artistic director of the Other Place, Stratford-upon-Avon. His work in the U.S. includes Romeo and Juliet at the Guthrie Theater, Camille at Long Wharf, and Bingo, Ivanov, Man Is Man, and Mister Puntila and His Chauffeur Matti at the Yale Repertory Theatre. At the RSC, his productions included The Tempest, Julius Caesar, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Pericles, Timon of Athens, Richard II, A Clockwork Orange, and many more, as well as world premieres of works by David Edgar, David Rudkin, Stephen Poliakoff, Pam Gems, and others. Mr. Daniels has staged Titus Andronicus and Hamlet in Tokyo, Japan. He is an honorary associate director of the Royal Shakespeare Company.

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Set design by

Michael H. Yeargan

Set design by

Michael H. Yeargan

Michael Yeargan designed sets for King Stag, Six Characters in Search of an Author, Long Day's Journey Into Night, The Threepenny Opera, The Juniper Tree, The Seven Deadly Sins, and Sganarelle at the A.R.T. He is resident designer for the Yale Repertory Theatre and Professor of Stage Design at Yale School of Drama. Mr. Yeargan has designed extensively in American resident theatres and on Broadway, and for opera companies throughout the U.S. and Europe, with designs for the Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera, and Covent Garden, Frankfurt Opera and Australian Opera. His U.S. credits include the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Dallas Opera, and Houston Grand Opera.

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Costume design by

Gabriel Berry

Costume design by

Gabriel Berry

A.R.T.: The Provok’d Wife; Pericles; The Birthday Party; Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2; Henry V; The Tempest; The Threepenny Opera. Recent work includes Osvaldo Goliov’s Ainadamar directed by Peter Sellars for the Teatro Real in Madrid, Stew and Heidi’s The Total Bent at The Public Theater and the world premiere of Tennessee Williams’s last play, Of Masks Outrageous and Austere at the Bleeker Street Theater in New York. An OBIE and Bessie award winner, Ms. Berry is the only American to ever win an individual medal at the Prague International Design Quadrennial. She received a silver medal for her contributions to experimental theater.

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Lighting design by

Anne Militello

Sound design by

Christopher Walker

Sound design by

Christopher Walker

Christopher Walker has composed music and designed sound for We Won't Pay! We Won't Pay!, Phaedra, Beckett Trio: Eh Joe, Ghost Trio, and Nacht und Traüme, and An Evening of Beckett, and designed sound for The King Stag, Loot, The Idiots Karamazov, Ivanov, The Cripple of Inishmaan, Charlie in the House of Rue, The Merchant of Venice, Valparaiso, The Taming of the Shrew, The Bacchae, The Wild Duck, Woyzeck, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, The Wild Duck, Alice in Bed, Slaughter City, Buried Child, Ubu Rock, The Threepenny Opera, The Accident, Demons, Waiting for Godot, The Oresteia, Hot 'n' Throbbing, The America Play, A Touch of the Poet, The Cherry Orchard, What the Butler Saw, and Those the River Keeps at the A.R.T. Previously he composed music and designed sound for productions at the Intiman Theatre, the Bathhouse Theatre, and the Alice B. Theatre. He also scores for dance and has composed for the Allegro Dance Festival, the Bumbershoot Festival, and On The Boards.

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Music Directed by

Craig Smith

Cast

A Singer on the Street/Reverend Kimball

Charles Levin

A Singer on the Street/Reverend Kimball

Charles Levin

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J.J. Peachum

Jeremy Geidt

J.J. Peachum

Jeremy Geidt

A.R.T. Senior Actor, founding member of the Yale Repertory Theatre and the A.R.T. Yale: more than 40 productions (including The Seagull). A.R.T.: 100 productions including The Seagull (three turns as Sorin), Julius Caesar, Three Sisters, The Onion Cellar, Major Barbara (Undershaft), Heartbreak House (Shotover), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Quince four times, Snug once), Henry IV (Falstaff), Twelfth Night (Toby Belch), The Caretaker (Davies), The Homecoming (Max), Loot (Truscott), Man and Superman (Mendoza/Devil), Waiting for Godot (Vladimir), The Threepenny Opera (Peacham/Petey), Ivanov (Lebedev), Three Sisters (Chebutkin), Buried Child (Dodge), The Cherry Orchard (Gaev) and The King Stag (Pantelone). Teaches at Harvard College, Harvard’s Summer and Extension Schools and at the A.R.T/MXAT Institute. Trained at the Old Vic Theatre School and subsequently taught there. Acted at the Old Vic, Young Vic, The Royal Court, in the West End, in films and television and has been hosting his own show “The Caravan” for the BBC for five years. Came to the U.S. with the satirical revue The Establishment and acted on and off Broadway, at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival and at the Lincoln Center Festival. Lectured on Shakespeare in India and the Netherlands Theatre School. Received the Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Boston Actor and the Jason Robards Award for Dedication to the Theatre.

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Charles Filch/Walt Dreary/Beggar Joe

Benjamin Evett

Charles Filch/Walt Dreary/Beggar Joe

Benjamin Evett

Benjamin Evett has appeared at the American Repertory Theater in La Dispute, as Ilya Ilych Telegin in Uncle Vanya, Kinesias in Lysistrata, Jacques Roux in Marat/Sade, Peter in Absolution, Cassio in Othello, Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk/Sir Stephen Scroope in Richard II, Burris in Animals and Plants, the General in Mother Courage, the Messenger in Antigone, Time in The Winter's Tale, Lvov in Ivanov, the Policeman in Charlie in the House of Rue, Babbybobby in The Cripple of Inishmaan, Hyppolytus in Phaedra, Clèante in The Imaginary Invalid, Tranio in The Taming of the Shrew, Pentheus in The Bacchae, Zalman Tippish/Chaim Rascal/Dopey Petzel in Shlemiel the First, the Dreamer in The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Leandro in The King Stag, the Son in Six Characters in Search of an Author, Punch 2/Judy Bell/Taxi Judy in Punch and Judy Get Divorced, Bouggerslas in Ubu Rock, Vince in Buried Child, Ariel in The Tempest, Charles Filch/Walt Dreary/Beggar Joe in The Threepenny Opera, Bardolph/Montjoy in Henry V, Lucky in Waiting for Godot, Herald/Chorus/Pylades/Hermes in The Oresteia, Epihodov in The Cherry Orchard, Nicholas Beckett in What the Butler Saw, Pistol in Henry IV, Part 2, and as Sir Richard Vernon in Part 1, in 'Tis Pity She's a Whore, and in Platonov. He has also performed at the Missouri Repertory Theatre, where he played the title roles in Billy Bishop Goes to War and Amadeus, and at the Great Lakes Theatre Festival, where he played Swiss Cheese in Mother Courage. He is a graduate of Harvard University and the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University. Mr. Evett currently serves as artistic director of the Actors' Shakespeare Company in Boston.

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Mrs. Peachum

Patti Allison

Mrs. Peachum

Patti Allison

Polly Peachum

Lynn Torgove

Polly Peachum

Lynn Torgove

Macheath

Elmore James

Macheath

Elmore James

Remo Airaldi

Matt of the Mint

Remo Airaldi

Remo Airaldi

Matt of the Mint

Remo Airaldi

A.R.T.: The Lily’s Revenge, Cabaret, Paradise Lost, Endgame, The Seagull, Oliver Twist, Island of Slaves, The Onion Cellar, The Communist Dracula Pageant, Cardenio, Julius Caesar, Amerika, The Miser, Henry IV and V, The Birthday Party, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, La Dispute, Uncle Vanya, Enrico IV, The Winter’s Tale, The Wild Duck, Buried Child, Tartuffe, Six Characters in Search of an Author, Waiting for Godot. Regional: Twelfth Night, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Love’s Labour’s Lost, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company; Sweeney Todd, My Fair Lady, Lyric Stage Company; Boston Playwrights’ Theatre; The Poets’ Theater; Israeli Stage; Central Square Theater; New Repertory Theater; Hartford Stage.

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Crook-Finger Jack

Vontress Mitchell

Crook-Finger Jack

Vontress Mitchell

Vontress Mitchell appeared as Zeinvel Shmeckel in the American Repertory Theater's world premiere of Shlemiel the First and as the Man in the A.R.T. New Stages production of The America Play. He has recently appeared as Rodrigo in Othello with the Juggernaut Theatre in New York, which will be performed at the Royal Shakespeare Company in spring 1997. Other A.R.T. credits include Henry IV, Black Snow, and The Threepenny Opera. He is also a 1995 graduate of the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University.

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Sawtooth Bob/Smith, a police officer

Jonathan Hammond

Sawtooth Bob/Smith, a police officer

Jonathan Hammond

Jonathan Hammond is a 1996 graduate of the American Repertory Theater/Moscow Art Theater Institute for Advanced Theater Training at Harvard University. His American Repertory Theater roles included Ralpheslas/Tax Collector/Trash's Messenger/etc. in Ubu Rock, Francisco/Captain in The Tempest, Sawtooth Bob/Smith in The Threepenny Opera, and Cilissa in The Libation Bearers. At the A.R.T. Institute he appeared in The Conduct of Life, Party Time, The Balcony, Blood Wedding, and Tales From the Vienna Woods. Other credits include Forbidden Broadway, Forever Plaid, The World Goes Round, Cabaret, and The Merry Widow (opposite Judy Kaye and Ron Raines). He has appeared as soloist with the Rochester Symphony in Michigan, the Michigan State Symphony, and with The Wheeling Symphony in West Virginia. Mr. Hammond has a BFA in musical theatre performance from the University of Michigan.

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Ed/Jones, A police officer

Chil Kong

Ed/Jones, A police officer

Chil Kong

Tiger Brown

Ben Halley, Jr.

Tiger Brown

Ben Halley, Jr.

Ben Halley, Jr., was most recently seen at the American Repertory Theater as Durandarte in the summer 1995 Cambridge performances of The King Stag, Tiger Brown in The Threepenny Opera, Pistol in Henry V, and Agamemnon and Apollo in The Oresteia. He is a classical actor whose artistry has taken him from Broadway to Hollywood, to the prominent resident theaters of America, to London, and to the major festival houses of Europe. Mr. Halley made his professional directorial debut with the South Coast Repertory Theatre in Costa Mesa, California.

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Jenny Diver

Sharon Scruggs

Jenny Diver

Sharon Scruggs

Sharon Scruggs appeared at American Repertory Theater as Marie in Woyzeck, Cod in Slaughter City, Aline Solness in The Master Builder, and as Jenny in The Threepenny Opera. Broadway credits include Welcome to the Club and Cleavage; Off-Broadway credits include Tina Landau's Stonewall, Night Variations, and Orestes (En Garde Arts); Goblin Market (Circle in the Square); The Common Pursuit (Promenade Theatre); and The Don Juan and the Non Don Juan (Vineyard Theatre). Other New York credits include Stand-Up Shakespeare, Oil City Symphony, Spring Awakening, Floyd Collins, Heart's Desire, and Still Dancing (New York Shakespeare Festival). Resident credits include Mrs. Farmer's Daughter and Tina Landau's States of Independence (American Music Theater Festival), The Secret Garden (world premiere, Virginia Stage), Happy End (Baltimore Center Stage), Diamond Studs (Cleveland Playhouse), and Elmer Gantry (Ford Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse - 1996 Helen Hayes Award nominee).

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Vixen

Wendy Frank

Vixen

Wendy Frank

Wendy Frank (Americas in The Tempest) appeared as Vixen in last season's The Threepenny Opera. She graduated from Oberlin College/Consevatory in 1993 with degrees in opera performance and pre-medicine. Since then, she has appeared as the Soprano in the Boston premiere of the review That's Life at the Jewish Theatre of New England, as Gianetta in The Gondoliers at the Publick Theatre, Rapunzel in Into the Woods at the Worcester Forum Theatre, Caroline in A Christmas Carol at the Colonial Theater (R.I.), Angelina in The Most Happy Fella at Chiswick Park Theatre, Ellie in the world premiere of the musical Where Are You Going, Hollis Jay? at the Bradford Theatre in Kentucky, as Curley's Wife in the opera Of Mice and Men, and as Pauline in the opera The Seagull at Oberlin College, Ohio. Ms. Frank has appeared as a soloist with orchestras in New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Ohio, and Washington, D.C.

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Dolly

Jenny Harrison

Dolly

Jenny Harrison

Betty

Samantha Phillips

Betty

Samantha Phillips

Molly

Jean Danton

Molly

Jean Danton

Lucy Brown

April Armstrong

Lucy Brown

April Armstrong

Ensemble

Brian Kinney, Brian Lamphier, Michael McNeil, Liam Sullivan

Ensemble

Brian Kinney, Brian Lamphier, Michael McNeil, Liam Sullivan