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Music and song lyrics: Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht, book: Elisabeth Hauptmann

HAPPY END, one of the three great collaborative works of the Brecht/Weill workshop, which premiered in 1929, can be seen at the Renaissance Theater in Berlin. The play, for which Elisabeth Hauptmann wrote the book, features many of those songs which, as a congenial combination of Kurt Weill's music and Bertolt Brecht's texts, are now considered to be among their great "classics".  

HAPPY END - The Story

"To the guns, soul in distress!" - Lilian Holiday, idealistic shooting star of the local Salvation Army detachment, meets Bill Cracker, ruthless man of action and gangster boss. An ambitious mission to proselytize Cracker against all his beliefs and opposition ultimately leads Miss Holiday to a battle in which her own salvation is existentially at stake. Whose soul will be saved in the process, and how, is revealed "happily" at the finale of this lively comedy with music.  

HAPPY END - The Play

Elisabeth Hauptmann, Brecht's long-time collaborator, wrote the libretto for this melodrama, Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht provided the music and lyrics - in essence, the creative team that, after DREIGROSCHENOPER, realized another play in the mood and style of the previous worldwide success. With the DREIGROSCHENOPER of 1928 and the opera AUFSTIEG UND FALL DER STADT MAHAGONNY of 1930, HAPPY END came to the stage in 1929 as the middle part of a trilogy of the three great collaborative works of the Brecht/Weill workshop. Many of the songs from the play have been an integral part of the concert repertoire since its premiere: "Bill's Ballhaus in Bilbao," "Surabaya Johnny," the "Sailor Tango" - and exemplify both Brecht's outstanding lyricism and Kurt Weill's musical genius.  

  • This production by the Renaissance Theater Berlin is sponsored in part by the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music, Inc, New York, NY.
Language: German

Music and lyrics: Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht

Sophia Euskirchen
Gabriel Schneider
Jacqueline Macaulay
Klaus Christian Schreiber
Noëlle Haeseling
Felix Lüke
Martin Schneider
Moritz Carl Winklmayr
Johanna Asch
Lennart Preining
Daniel Warland    

Musical direction: Harry Ermer
SSemjon Barlas
Karola Elßner
Johannes Gehlmann
Stephan Genze
Roland Schmitt
Otwin Zipp  

Direction: Sebastian Sommer
Stage: Philip Rubner, Alexander Grüner
Costumes: Wicke Naujoks, Ariane Warns

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