Thomas Markworth
Thomas Markworth - President of the Kurt-Weill-Gesellschaft e.V.

General Music Director Markus L. Frank, Directors Johannes Weigand, Gerhard Kämpfe and Dr. Jürgen Schebera (f.l.t.r.)

Kurt Weill Festival Dessau

Dear friends of the Kurt Weill Festival,

"Weill on stage!" – the motto of the Kurt Weill Festival 2018 follows Theodor Fontane's words: "A good aphorism is the wisdom of an entire book in a single sentence". With "Weill on stage!" we present a highly diverse programme that focuses on the composer's work for musical theatre, the person of Kurt Weill as well as his extraordinary life story.

In this 26th festival year, we pay tribute to the composer's achievement as an innovator in musical theatre and creator of a new style of song. Thus our programme features the greatest successes of the composer: a play with music in the form of The Threepenny Opera in a long-awaited new production by the Anhaltisches Theater Dessau – a must-see event in the year of the work's 90th anniversary (its premiere was in 1928). And to complete the arc from the past through the present to the future, we have a real treat: the work that served as the original model for The Threepenny Opera, namely, The Beggar's Opera, in an entirely new version entitled La BETTLEROPERa.

But what is the meaning of a work if we have no knowledge of its background or any understanding of its creator? Hence, "Weill on stage!" also places the spotlight on the charismatic and internationally renowned composer himself. Born in the state of Saxony-Anhalt into a Jewish family, a member of the artistic and politically active November Group, he was a true cosmopolitan. Quite in the spirit of "Weill's principle", the festival presents a wide-range programme shaped by prominent artists, newcomers and experts. In particular, Artist-in-Residence Till Brönner has accepted the invitation to come to Dessau, and is sure to leave his mark on the festival with his unbounded virtuosity and wealth of ideas.

We are grateful to the city of Dessau-Roßlau and the state of Saxony-Anhalt for helping to safeguard the Kurt Weill Festival as well as to all the patrons and sponsors who enable us to put on such a hugely diverse programme; we are delighted that these include the Kurt Weill Foundation of New York, a true partner to the festival.

We are looking forward to welcoming you as our guests at the 26th Kurt Weill Festival and wish you many wonderful and unforgettable hours!

Thomas Markworth
President of the Kurt-Weill-Gesellschaft e.V.

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