U of M dusts off Threepenny Opera - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

U of M dusts off Threepenny Opera

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

For six days over the next two weeks the University of Memphis will showcase "The Threepenny Opera."

The musical is about some rather seamy characters who were in a way occupiers of 19th Century Europe.

"It's a musical comedy that basically follows the underworld  of beggars, whores and thieves and how they manage to get over on the wealthy," said Mark Allan Davis, University of Memphis Theatre and Dance. ""It's a musical about the one percenters and the 99 percent. The Occupy Musical."

MORE: 'Threepenny Opera' showtimes

Even as old as it is, "The Threepenny Opera" has undercurrents reflecting modern politics, Davis added.

"The Threepenny Opera" was first produced on stage in 1928. You might think, well, I never heard of that before. But the reality is you have.

It may surprise you to learn we have been singing along with the musical version of "That Message" for years.

"The most famous song is 'Mac The Knife,'" Davis said. "The ballad of 'Mac the Knife' has been recorded by Ella Fitzgerald, Bobby Darin, Louie Armstrong, Harry Connick, Jr., and Michael Buble'."

Probably the most famous version of the song has been performed by Darin.

If the words have always seemed strange, even though the melody seemed great, now you know the reason. Darin did a great arrangement of an old song, but even the original has a cool rhythm. Even for a song 84 years old.

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