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The Beggar's Opera - 1968 - West End Tickets, News, Info & More

At its London premiere in 1728, John Gay's rollicking Beggar's Opera caused a sensation. Lampooning the politics and public morality of the day, it became an instant hit.

Apollo Theatre


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29 Shaftesbury Avenue
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by Stephi Wild - Sep 6, 2020
Come out of quarantine and enjoy an afternoon of beautiful music with an optional dinner. Join in on Sunday September 20th at 2 p.m. for 'Our Three Tenors, a tribute to Luciano Pavarotti.
by Stephi Wild - Sep 6, 2018
The European premiere of Bill Russell and Janet Hood's new musical Unexpected Joy is underway. The powerful all-female cast is made up of:Janet Fullerlove (Fortune's Fool, The Beggar's Opera) as Joy; Jodie Jacobs (Myth, Rock of Ages) as Rachel; Melanie Marshall (Guys and Dolls, Jane Eyre) as Lou; and Kelly Sweeney (Ronald William White Acting Through Song Prize Winner 2018) as Tamara.
by David Sousa Lopes - Sep 30, 2018
Luxembourg has welcomed a variety of interesting shows over the last months, but it has been a while since the public had a chance to see something as great as this version of The Beggar's Opera. This famous masterpiece devised by John Gay and Johann Christoph Pepuschm, who some claim to have defined our modern understanding of musical theatre, is often subject to small adaptations, in order to better fit a certain decade or national context. In this version, Robert Carsen and Ian Burton made the choice to set the play in modern Britain, using 21st century costumes and writing references to today's social and political environment.
by A.A. Cristi - Sep 22, 2020
One of New York City's most innovative opera companies, City Lyric Opera (CLO), begins its fifth season with a never before seen live experience of power, technology, and storytelling. From October 29-November 15, 2020, CLO presents Weill and Brecht's musical comedy The Threepenny Opera in a virtual, fully produced show.
by Stephi Wild - Sep 19, 2019
After sell out seasons in the West End and through the UK, Anthony Jay and Jonathan Lynn's hit returns to the stage for one week only at Theatr Clwyd this November. Prime Minister Jim Hacker and his long-suffering Cabinet Secretary Sir Humphrey Appleby are back - still morally dubious and spinning the stories - all the while staring disaster and political ruin in the face.
by Stephi Wild - Sep 10, 2019
The special guests performing in a double bill showcasing some of the all-time musical theatre classics have been announced.
by Stephi Wild - Oct 7, 2020
James Quaife Productions today announces the world première of Paul Harvard's debut play GHBoy - opening at the Charing Cross Theatre on 10 November 2020, with previews from 4 November, and runs until 28 November.
by Stephi Wild - Oct 7, 2019
An uplifting evocation of 1920s jazz and blues, and the fictitious, gripping story of Honey Grey, lead singer in her Daddy's band, are told in the musical tale of LADY OF JAZZ. Running at the award winning Hope Mill Theatre from Monday November 11- Wednesday 13th 2019, this brand new musical production is presented by Doye Mosse productions, directed by Greg Mosse, and written by Greg Mosse and John Gleadall.
by BWW News Desk - Oct 31, 2018
Fringe First Award winning company Bear Trap Theatre are set to celebrate their eighth anniversary with a new play by Evening Standard Award nominated writer Jesse Briton. The World Premiere production of A Pupil will be performed at Park Theatre from 31st October - 24th November 2018.
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Oct 29, 2019
'The Threepenny Opera' by Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill is considered a masterpiece of 20th-century musical theatre. The UC Davis Department of Theatre and Dance will perform the 1928 work Nov. 14-23.
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Oct 28, 2019
'The Threepenny Opera' by Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill is considered a masterpiece of 20th-century musical theatre. The UC Davis Department of Theatre and Dance will perform the 1928 work Nov. 14-23.
by Julie Musbach - Oct 15, 2019
Two brand new musical theatre shows are being premiered at Liverpool's Epstein Theatre this weekend.
by Stephi Wild - Nov 3, 2018
Fringe First Award winning company Bear Trap Theatre are set to celebrate their eighth anniversary with a new play by Evening Standard Award nominated writer Jesse Briton. The World Premiere production of A Pupil will be performed at Park Theatre from 31st October - 24th November 2018.
by Chloe Rabinowitz - May 4, 2021
Amélie The Musical is set to reopen in the West End this summer at the Criterion Theatre from Thursday 20 May. Olivier-nominee Audrey Brisson will be returning to the role of 'Amélie'.
by Debbie Gilpin - May 24, 2019
"Bring it down. Bring it all down and start again!" An unexpected European election day in the UK and anticipation of Theresa May's resignation formed the backdrop for Kneehigh's London press night for Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs), making its presence more vital than ever - and its message more potent. Carl Grose and Charles Hazlewood's show, which was first performed in 2014, is based on John Gay's The Beggar's Opera, taking the characters and hurling them into the present day.
by A.A. Cristi - May 23, 2018
The Orchard Project is proud to announce the artists, teams, and ensembles participating in its twelfth summer theatre residency program. More than 30 artists and ensembles were selected for residencies this summer from nearly 600 theatre artists and companies who applied. The artists, teams, and companies will come to Saratoga Springs from across the United States and the world to accelerate projects at various stages of development. Throughout the program, the Orchard Project will also present a series of special events and cabarets for the public by OP residents and associated artists.
by Stephi Wild - May 23, 2018
The classic musical The Wizard of Oz is announced as Storyhouse's 2018 Christmas show.
by Jo Fisher - May 2, 2019
Opera isn't dead. In fact, it's alive and kicking off thanks to Kneehigh's reimagining of John Gay's The Beggars Opera, which takes on the new and riotous form of Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs).
by Stephi Wild - May 17, 2022
With the return of Salisbury International Arts Festival imminent, Artistic Director of Wiltshire Creative Gareth Machin today announces the line up the company's Autumn/Winter season.
by Stephi Wild - May 16, 2022
Shakespeare in the Squares today announces the full cast for their fifth anniversary production of Shakespeare's The Tempest. Sioned Jones directs Mark Carlisle, Laura Gomez Garcia, Indigo Griffiths, Phyllis Ho, Ellis Kerkhoven, William Shackleton, Wilf Walsworth and Sasha Wilson.
by Marissa Tomeo - May 11, 2022
WAM Theatre joins the Berkshire Community in celebrating Pride Month with a Fresh Takes Play Reading of Bright Half Life by Pulitzer Prize and Emmy Nominated writer Tanya Barfield (The Call, Blue Door). The play is directed by Gina Kaufmann (Professor of Performance and Directing at University of Massachusetts, Amherst) and will be presented on Sunday, June 5, at 2pm at MASS MoCA in North Adams. Tickets are on sale now. This reading is being presented as part of Berkshire County’s annual LGBTQ+ Pride celebration in partnership with Berkshire Stonewall Community Coalition and MASS MoCA.
by Stephi Wild - Mar 30, 2021
Following its opening at the Watermill Theatre, a critically acclaimed sell-out tour in 2019, a highly successful Christmas season at The Other Palace in 2019, a Grammy nomination and 3 Olivier Award nominations, Amélie The Musical arrives in the heart of the West End this summer.
by Debbie Gilpin - Mar 26, 2018
In our new series, BroadwayWorld UK writers nominate the shows they'd love to see revived!
by Stephi Wild - Mar 21, 2022
NYC based cabaret, concert and recording artist Travis Moser makes his City Winery New York debut with Someday Soon: The Songs of Judy Collins. Travis, along with musical director Drew Wutke, perform brand new arrangements of some of folk and pop icon Judy Collins’ most loved songs, such as “Someday Soon,” “Both Sides Now,” “Mountain Girl,” “Who Knows Where the Time Goes” and many more. 
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Mar 2, 2020
DIANA is officially in previews on Broadway! Tony Award®-winning director Christopher Ashley (Come From Away) and the writers behind the Tony Award-winning musical Memphis (Joe DiPietro and David Bryan) bring us face-to-face with one of the 20th century's most compelling figures in this landmark musical event, featuring an epic and sweeping contemporary score with music supervision and arrangements by Olivier Award® winner Ian Eisendrath, choreography by Olivier Award winner and Tony Award nominee Kelly Devine, and Diana's iconic style reimagined by six-time Tony Award-winning costume designer William Ivey Long.
by Monica Moore - Jun 25, 2019
At times verging on the absurd, this production of the Threepenny Opera (in support of the Wellington Homeless Women's Trust) is thoroughly entertaining, at times unsettling and indicative of the work's continuing popularity and relevance although the purposeful crude scenes, caustic wit and dissection of the hypocrisies of the bourgeois morality may not be for everyone.
by Stephi Wild - Jun 22, 2021
1950. Blackpool. Newly-wed Yorkshire couple, Jack and Liz have crossed the Pennines for their first trip to the seaside mecca. Beneath an uncertain September sky, they holiday in a world of stripy deckchairs, sandy sandwiches and stroppy donkeys. As the Wurlitzer organ plays they sway together on the dance floor of the Tower Ballroom.
by Stephi Wild - Jul 9, 2018
Casting for the European premiere of Bill Russell and Janet Hood's new musical Unexpected Joy has been announced. The powerful all-female cast is made up of: Janet Fullerlove (Fortune's Fool, The Beggar's Opera) as Joy; Jodie Jacobs (Myth, Rock of Ages) as Rachel; Melanie Marshall (Guys and Dolls, Jane Eyre) as Lou; and Kelly Sweeney (Ronald William White Acting Through Song Prize Winner 2018) as Tamara.
by Tim Wright - Jul 5, 2019
'Bring it down, bring it all down' is the anarchic cry from Macheath in Kneehigh's take on The Beggar's Opera. John Gray's original is given the full Kneehigh treatment- the original is not a constraint but a jumping off point. Perhaps the slide in the middle of Michael Vale's set is the physical manifestation of Kneehigh's ever playful nature.
by Marianka Swain - Jul 5, 2019
Full casting has been announced for the 'Musical Theatre Reimagined Cabaret' aptly titled 'REFRESH' that's playing at Underbelly Festival in August.
by Stephi Wild - Jul 3, 2018
Damsel Productions today announces Abi Zakarian's Fabric in support of Solace Women's Aid, a charity which works to bring an end to the harm done through domestic and sexual violence. Hannah Hauer-King directs a brand new production with Nancy Sullivan as Leah. Opening at Soho Theatre on 13 September, with previews from 11 September, and closing on 22 September, the production then tours to non-traditional theatre spaces in four of Solace's target London boroughs from 24 September to 6 October.
by Stephi Wild - Jul 18, 2019
Storyhouse has announced its eleventh season of homemade theatre.
by Stephi Wild - Jul 10, 2019
Amelie The Musical, based on the much-loved, five-time Oscar-nominated film, will transfer to the West End this Christmas following its current UK tour, and its sell-out season premiere at the Watermill in Newbury in April.
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Jan 4, 2020
My name is Lucy Barton is officially in previews on Broadway! Four-time Emmy winner, two-time Golden Globe winner, three-time Academy Award and four-time Tony nominee Laura Linney returns to Broadway in a haunting new solo play adapted by Rona Munro from the bestselling novel by Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout.
by Stephi Wild - Jan 3, 2020
If the turning of the year is a time to think about what's important in the world - and how to challenge everything that's wrong with it - then audiences could do a lot worse than be inspired by the riotous Polly (The Heartbreak Opera) coming to Greenwich Theatre on February 14 and 15. Produced by Marie Hamilton and Sharp Teeth Theatre, the show reimagines the sequel to John Gay's The Beggar's Opera (which sees Polly Peachum heading off in search of Macheath in the West Indies where he is living as a pirate) for a 21st century audience.
by Stephi Wild - Jan 27, 2020
A seminal work of Jewish culture or an act of traitorous libel? Indecent explores the origins of the highly controversial play The God of Vengeance by Sholem Asch. We follow the path of the artists who risked their careers and lives to perform it in this deeply moving play accompanied by a small live klezmer band.
by Stephi Wild - Feb 4, 2021
Chichester Festival Theatre has announced its upcoming spring season of streamed events , including FACING THE MUSIC interviews with Sheila Hancock, Philip Quast, Patricia Routledge, Imelda Staunton and Giles Terera, an encore screening of Celebrating Sondheim, and more!
by Stephi Wild - Feb 3, 2020
Full casting is announced today for the new spectacular production of Zorro The Musical which will run at the Hope Mill Theatre in Manchester from 14 March a?" 18 April 2020, with opening night for press on 18 March, directed by Christian Durham. The show will be brought to life by a cast including Antony Costa as Garcia, Alex Gibson-Giorgio as Ramon, Emma Kingston as Luisa, Genevieve Nicole as Inez, Kit Orton as Don Alejandro and Benjamin Purkiss as the masked hero, Zorro. The cast is completed by Ajjaz Awad, Amy Bastani, Isobel Bates, Ben Boskovic, Maxwell Griffin, Matthew Heywood, Jessica Pardoe, Thomas Ping, Seren Sandham-Davies and Stylianos Thomadakis.
by BWW News Desk - Feb 21, 2019
Quisqueya Productions presents a limited showing of a re-imagined version of Shakespeare's HENRY V. Shakespeare's definitive parable of war and warriors will directed by Broadway veteran, Mary Lou Rosato, at the legendary American Theatre of Actors - one of the last great theaters of the famed off-off Broadway movement - for a special limited run.
by Stephi Wild - Aug 9, 2018
Damsel Productions today announces the London tour dates for Abi Zakarian's Fabric, a new production in support of Solace Women's Aid. Following a run at Soho Theatre, the production tours to non-traditional theatre spaces - Hammersmith Town Hall, Kingsgate Community Centre, Goodinge Community Centre and Draper Hall, located in four boroughs identified by Solace Women's Aid as target areas. Directed by Hannah Hauer-King and starring Nancy Sullivan as Leah, Fabric opens at Soho Theatre on 13 September, with previews from 11 September, and closes on 22 September before touring from 24 September to 6 October.
by A.A. Cristi - Aug 6, 2020
The Stratford Festival is devastated to learn of the death of Brent Carver, an actor of incomparable talent, winner of a Tony Award for his starring role in Kiss of the Spider Woman, and a long-time Stratford Festival company member.
by Stephi Wild - Aug 6, 2019
The actors for #StudioREP inaugural season have been confirmed. Olivier nominated and West End Star David Burt will join the company of six which also includes Dave Fishley, Alice Bailey Johnson, Imogen Smith and Christopher Williams. In keeping with the spirit of the Rep tradition, the #Studio Rep company will always feature one acting graduate, so The New Actors Company is very proud to introduce Emma Byrne to the company who graduated from GSA this year.
by A.A. Cristi - Apr 9, 2020
Projects with Jason launches its new live stream series, a?oeArtists in Conversationa??, with a special live event featuring Academy and Tony Award winning actor Kevin Kline on Saturday
by Alan Henry - Apr 24, 2019
The Lisbon Players are bringing A CHORUS OF DISAPPROVAL to Estrela Hall from May 2 to 18, 2019.
by Marissa Tomeo - Apr 2, 2022
The Broadway Podcast Network (Dori Berinstein, Co-Founder & CEO; Alan Seales, Co-Founder & CTO) is pleased to announced that The Theatre Podcast with Alan Seales is celebrating it's 200th episode in true Broadway style, with special guest, Broadway legend Patti LuPone! The 200th episode is available now, exclusively on the BPN iOS app, and it will be available everywhere you get your podcasts on Tuesday, April 5th.
by Stephi Wild - Apr 14, 2019
Caroline Gottlieb, Visible Ink Productions, and the Beverly Hills Playhouse have announced a new production of Tom Kempinski's critically-acclaimed drama Duet for One, set for a five-week run at the Beverly Hills Playhouse. Under the direction of Allen Barton, the cast will feature Mia Christou and Howard Leder. Opening is on Friday, April 12, at 8pm. The regular running schedule is Friday and Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 7pm through May 12.
by Marissa Tomeo - Apr 11, 2022
LuPone recalls her first introduction to the musical Gypsy (playing Louise) in highschool, speaking candidly about not understanding the play at the time, and shares how she was initially banned from participating in any of Arthur Laurents work before going on to win a Tony Award for playing Rose. She reflects on going to the 'dark side' a lot when COVID shut the industry down, noting it wasn't that she couldn't perform but rather that she had nothing to fill that void with, and shares how close-knit and supportive the cast and crew of Company is as a result of the collective trauma and uncertainty they faced together once they resumed rehearsals. LuPone also speaks about the importance of doing her work completely in the rehearsal room, allowing her and the audience to both play and relax once she is onstage, and shares why she looks at the audience every single night.
by Alan Henry - Apr 11, 2019
The Lisbon Players are bringing A CHORUS OF DISAPPROVAL to Estrela Hall from May 2 to 18, 2019.
by Stephi Wild - Apr 11, 2018
Storyhouse has announced the cast for its new in-house company who will perform in rep, five productions at Chester's multi award-winning theatre cinema and library and outdoors at Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre.

The Beggar's Opera Frequently Asked Questions

What other productions of The Beggar's Opera have their been?
The Beggar's Opera has had 9 productions including West End which opened in 1920, Broadway which opened in 1920, Broadway which opened in 1928, Broadway which opened in 1928, Off-Off-Broadway which opened in 1964, West End which opened in 1968, Broadway which opened in 1973, Broadway which opened in 1973 and London Fringe which opened in 1992.

What productions of The Beggar's Opera have their been?
The Beggar's Opera has had 9 productions including West End which opened in 1920, Broadway which opened in 1920, Broadway which opened in 1928, Broadway which opened in 1928, Off-Off-Broadway which opened in 1964, West End which opened in 1968, Broadway which opened in 1973, Broadway which opened in 1973 and London Fringe which opened in 1992.

What songs are in The Beggar's Opera and what's the order?
Through all the Employments of Life
'Tis Woman that Seduces all Mankind
If any Wench Venus's Girdle wear
If Love the Virgin's Heart invade
A Maid is like the golden Oar
Virgins Are like the fair Flower in its Lustre
Our Polly is a sad Slut! nor heeds what we have taught her
Can Love be controul’d by Advise?
O Polly, you might have toy'd and kist
I, like a Ship in Storms, was lost
A Fox may steal your Hens, Sir
Oh, ponder well! Be not severe
The Turtle thus with plaintive crying
Pretty Polly, say
My Heart was so free
Were I laid on Greenland's Coast
O what Pain it is to part!
The Miser thus a Shilling sees
Fill ev’ry Glass, for Wine inspires us
Let us take the Road
If the Heart of a Man is deprest with Cares
Youth's the Season made for Joys
Before the Barn-door crowing
The Gamesters and Lawyers are Jugglers alike
At the Tree I shall suffer with pleasure
Man may escape from Rope and Gun
Thus when a good Huswife sees a Rat
How cruel are the Traytors
The first time at the Looking-glass
When you censure the Age
Is then his Fate decreed, Sir?
You'll think e'er many days ensue
If you at an Office solicit your Due
Thus when the Swallow, seeking Prey
How happy could I be with either
I'm bubbled
Cease your Funning
Why how now, Madam Flirt?
No Power on Earth can e'er divide
I like the Fox shall grieve
When Young at the Bar you first taught me to score
My Love is all Madness and Folly
Thus Gamesters United in Friendship are found
The Modes of the Court so common are grown
What Gudgeons are we men!
In the Days of my Youth I could bill like a Dove, fa, la, la
I'm like a Skiff on the Ocean tost
When a Wife's in her Pout
A Curse attends that Woman's Love
Among the Men, Coquets we Find
Come, sweet Lass
Hither, dear Husband, turn your Eyes
Which way shall I turn me?
When my Hero in Court appears
When he holds up his Hand arraign’d for his life
Our selves, like the Great, to secure a Retreat
The Charge is prepar’d; The Lawyers are met
O cruel, cruel, cruel Case!
Of all the Friends in time of Grief
Since I must Swing, – I scorn, I scorn to wince or whine
But now again my Spirits sink
But Valour the stronger grows
If thus – A Man can die
So I drink off this Bumper. And now I can stand the Test
But can I leave my pretty Hussies
Their Eyes, their Lips, their Busses
Since Laws were made for ev’ry degree
Would I might be hang'd
Thus I stand like the Turk, with his Doxies around
When Gold Is in Hand
In Pimps and Politicians
In a Humor I Was of Late
Newgate Prison
Prisoner's Song
Macheath's Hanging

What is the order of songs in The Beggar's Opera and what's the order?
Through all the Employments of Life
'Tis Woman that Seduces all Mankind
If any Wench Venus's Girdle wear
If Love the Virgin's Heart invade
A Maid is like the golden Oar
Virgins Are like the fair Flower in its Lustre
Our Polly is a sad Slut! nor heeds what we have taught her
Can Love be controul’d by Advise?
O Polly, you might have toy'd and kist
I, like a Ship in Storms, was lost
A Fox may steal your Hens, Sir
Oh, ponder well! Be not severe
The Turtle thus with plaintive crying
Pretty Polly, say
My Heart was so free
Were I laid on Greenland's Coast
O what Pain it is to part!
The Miser thus a Shilling sees
Fill ev’ry Glass, for Wine inspires us
Let us take the Road
If the Heart of a Man is deprest with Cares
Youth's the Season made for Joys
Before the Barn-door crowing
The Gamesters and Lawyers are Jugglers alike
At the Tree I shall suffer with pleasure
Man may escape from Rope and Gun
Thus when a good Huswife sees a Rat
How cruel are the Traytors
The first time at the Looking-glass
When you censure the Age
Is then his Fate decreed, Sir?
You'll think e'er many days ensue
If you at an Office solicit your Due
Thus when the Swallow, seeking Prey
How happy could I be with either
I'm bubbled
Cease your Funning
Why how now, Madam Flirt?
No Power on Earth can e'er divide
I like the Fox shall grieve
When Young at the Bar you first taught me to score
My Love is all Madness and Folly
Thus Gamesters United in Friendship are found
The Modes of the Court so common are grown
What Gudgeons are we men!
In the Days of my Youth I could bill like a Dove, fa, la, la
I'm like a Skiff on the Ocean tost
When a Wife's in her Pout
A Curse attends that Woman's Love
Among the Men, Coquets we Find
Come, sweet Lass
Hither, dear Husband, turn your Eyes
Which way shall I turn me?
When my Hero in Court appears
When he holds up his Hand arraign’d for his life
Our selves, like the Great, to secure a Retreat
The Charge is prepar’d; The Lawyers are met
O cruel, cruel, cruel Case!
Of all the Friends in time of Grief
Since I must Swing, – I scorn, I scorn to wince or whine
But now again my Spirits sink
But Valour the stronger grows
If thus – A Man can die
So I drink off this Bumper. And now I can stand the Test
But can I leave my pretty Hussies
Their Eyes, their Lips, their Busses
Since Laws were made for ev’ry degree
Would I might be hang'd
Thus I stand like the Turk, with his Doxies around
When Gold Is in Hand
In Pimps and Politicians
In a Humor I Was of Late
Newgate Prison
Prisoner's Song
Macheath's Hanging

What productions of The Beggar's Opera have there been?
The Beggar's Opera has had 9 productions including West End which opened in 1920, Broadway which opened in 1920, Broadway which opened in 1928, Broadway which opened in 1928, Off-Off-Broadway which opened in 1964, West End which opened in 1968, Broadway which opened in 1973, Broadway which opened in 1973 and London Fringe which opened in 1992.