BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo Department of Theatre
and Dance will present The Threepenny Opera from Wednesday, Nov.
14, to Sunday, Nov. 18, in the Drama Theatre in the Center for the
Arts, UB North Campus. Evening performances will be at 7:30 p.m.
There will be matinee performances on Nov. 17 and 18 at 2 p.m.
The Threepenny Opera, written by Bertolt Brecht with music by
Kurt Weill, will receive a full production with orchestra and will
include newly designed and executed sets, lights and costumes.
Vincent O'Neill will direct the production and Nathan R. Matthews
will serve as the show's music director and conductor. Marlee Stoka
Set in Victorian London, the play focuses on Macheath, an
amoral, anti-heroic criminal. After only knowing each other for
five days, Macheath marries Polly Peachum. This displeases her
father, who controls the beggars of London, and he endeavors to
have Macheath hanged, but his attempts are hindered by the fact
that the chief of police is Macheath's old army comrade. Still,
Peachum exerts his influence and eventually gets Macheath arrested
and sentenced to hang. Macheath escapes this fate when, in an
unrestrained parody of a happy ending, a messenger from the Queen
arrives to pardon Macheath and grant him the title of Baron.
O'Neill is the artistic director of the celebrated Irish
Classical Theatre Company. O'Neill trained as a mime artist with
the legendary Marcel Marceau in Paris. He became a member by
invitation of the internationally celebrated Abbey Theatre Company,
both as actor and director. He performed with the Abbey Company on
tour at the Edinburgh Theatre Festival, London, Paris,
Philadelphia, New York, Hong Kong, the Bolshoi Theatre in Leningrad
and the Moscow Arts Theatre. He has been a member of the UB faculty
since 1990, where he is former chair of the Department of Theatre
and Dance, and currently director of theatre performance.
Matthews, UB associate professor of music theatre and director
of music theatre, is the founding producing artistic director of
New York's Riverside Opera Ensemble, where he has developed and
produced new works of music theatre. Matthews served on the music
staff of the Santa Fe Opera and has worked on Broadway, across
North America and abroad with internationally acclaimed artists
such as Dixie Carter, Mellissa Errico, Malcolm Gets, Mark Hamill
and Anne Hathaway. In Western New York, Matthews has music
directed/conducted at UB, the Irish Classical Theatre Company, the
Kavinoky Theatre, Musicalfare Theatre and at Artpark. He also
serves on the advisory board of the Amas Musical Theatre Company in
New York City, a company celebrated for the development of new
The cast for The Threepenny Opera will be comprised of students
from the UB Music Theatre and Dance programs. This production is
funded in part by the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music Inc., New