Search - Kurt Weill, Rudolf Nelson, Friedrich Hollaender :: Die Dreigroschenoper: Berlin 1930

Die Dreigroschenoper: Berlin 1930
Kurt Weill, Rudolf Nelson, Friedrich Hollaender
Die Dreigroschenoper: Berlin 1930
Genres: World Music, Pop, Soundtracks, Classical
 
Performed in 1930 by the cast and orchestra of the 1928 Berlin premiere (except for Willi Trenk-Trebitsch, the Mackie of the 1929 Prague premiere), this extraordinary recording must be the last word in genuine, unvarnished...  more »

      
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Performed in 1930 by the cast and orchestra of the 1928 Berlin premiere (except for Willi Trenk-Trebitsch, the Mackie of the 1929 Prague premiere), this extraordinary recording must be the last word in genuine, unvarnished "authenticity." Even the remastered sound is amazingly good and life-like. The half-spoken, half-sung delivery captures the biting sarcasm of Brecht's text as well as the abrasive bitterness and sinuous lyricism of Weill's melodies, underlined by the punchy, swinging rhythms and indigenously jazzy sound of the orchestra. The result is an uncanny evocation of a historical period and its atmosphere. One can smell the smoky nightclub air, see the garish colors, and feel the unbridled sensuousness. This "abridged" version offers 13 familiar numbers, with most strophic repeats omitted, but includes alternate versions of several songs--four in French, two sung by Brecht himself. There are also two songs from Mahagonny, a long "scene" by Wilhelm Grosz, and two songs each by Rudolf Nelson and Friedrich Hollaender (who wrote the music for the film "The Blue Angel), two of them sung by Marlene Dietrich with her inimitable lascivious sensuality. --Edith Eisler
 

CD Reviews

Wonderful original recording, plenty extras.
Gluedisc | 09/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"In quick summary:
- If you're at all familiar with the Dreigroschenoper and all its incarnations, be sure to buy this album. It's the closest you could get to an 'original'.
- If you're completely new to the Threepenny story, I would recommend starting with the 1999 Nina Hagen concert version instead. It's got all the songs left out here, better recording quality, and a more modern approach to the music.

This is not a complete collection of original cast Dreigroschen songs. Rather, it's a selection of the best tracks from the play, often censored and cut short (in all the usual ways), and filled up with seemingly random extras in the genre.

The performers are all quite brilliant, and it's refreshing to hear a 3P without all the screaming and biting from recent versions. Though the songs are by no means slow, they're much more relaxed, more saccharine I would say, than what they've later evolved into. I love both type interpretations, but I often prefer this one.

One very nice bonus is the inclusion of a handful Threepenny songs in French. Otherwise pretty hard to come by. Also, the famous final lines of the movie version (Moritat reprise) are present, which I've only seen in one other recording (the 1981, also led by Miss Lotte Lenya). All in all, an essential CD for Brecht/Weill fans."
This one is really fine.
William S. Kalenborn | Rochester, MN USA | 03/02/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I've been a three-penny freak ever since I was a hanger-on at a Stanford production 40 years ago directed by a Brecht associate from Berlin. It's wonderful to get the authentic original cast records. I really like the added Berlin Chansons, too. "Don't Goggle at that Tango Dancer, Keep Your Eyes on the Guy You Came with!" Or Marlene Dietrich, with "Jonny, When it's Your Birthday, I'll Be Your Guest for a Night.""
The original cast--the real thing.
Uncle Willie | San Diego, CA | 03/12/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"You can buy lots of different versions, old and new, German and English, of The Three Penny Opera. This is the original "Dreigroschenoper," done with the cast and orchestra of Brecht and Weill. Be ready for culture shock, but--isn't that what you're looking for?"