Written by Berthold Brecht
and Kurt Weill
Also known as 'The Little Mahagonny', the Songspiel must not be confused with the opera Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny. The SongSpiel was first performed at the Baden-Baden festival, July, 18th of 1927, with projections by Caspar Neher. Lotte Lenya, Irene Eden, Erik Wirl, George Ripperger, Karl Giebel and Gerhard Pechner played the roles of the characters. Mahagonny Songspiel was commisioned by the organizers of the festival, who wanted a performance of a short opera for chamber ensembles. Weill's first idea was to set a scene of King Lear or Antigone, but since he and Brecht were already planning a Mahagonny opera they decided to make a 'style study' for a shorter version.
The Songspiel was an instant success and centerpoint of discussions: the set was a 'boxing ring', the music in-corporated jazz music with the intentional 'vulgarism'. Alabama song instantly became a hit.
The Songlist is: