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The Los Angeles Opera production earned Grammy® Awards for Best Classical Album and Best Opera Recording in February 2009. Broadway stars Audra McDonald, Patti LuPone and Anthony Dean Griffey welcome you to the City of Mahagonny! This Old West boomtown rises from the desert to become a razzle-dazzle Mecca for lust, liberty, and the pursuit of pleasure. Cash is king, poverty is punishable by death, and anything worth doing is worth overdoing. The gripping story and sharply satirical opera - full of whiskey, women and gambling fools - raises an ironic eyebrow at capitalist society. With lyrics by the influential German playwright Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956), the provocative work that inspired the Broadway hits Cabaret and Chicago, had its premiere in 1930 and was banned by the Nazis in 1933. Kurt Weill (1900-1950), composer of “Mack the Knife” and the Threepenny Opera, penned a haunting score, which crosses over from opera to cabaret to Broadway including ragtime, jazz, raucous music hall songs and the classic pop hit “Moon of Alabama”. On this DVD, recorded live at Los Angeles Opera in spring 2007, John Doyle, the director of Broadway's smash hit revival of Sweeney Todd, delivers a risky new production starring four-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald, who stars as Jenny, a tart-with-a-heart, and Broadway legend Patti LuPone as the town's feisty madam Begbick. In an additional bonus feature, conductor James Conlon talks about the work and this particular staging.
Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht: Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny