Com­ing up in Philly Music: The life and music of Kurt Weil

1 minute read
Brian Major, bass baritone, sings 'Lost in the Stars' by Kurt Weill. (Image courtesy of Lyric Fest.)
Brian Major, bass baritone, sings 'Lost in the Stars' by Kurt Weill. (Image courtesy of Lyric Fest.)

Lyric Fest is releasing its latest video in bite-size installments, especially for those who may be experiencing some sort of virtual concert fatigue. The final chapter of its latest Biography in Music series will air this Saturday. The first three installments are available on YouTube.

The subject is Kurt Weil, a composer who had two major careers. In Germany before World War II, he was the influential composer of socially conscious operettas like The Threepenny Opera. In the United States, where he sought refuge from the Nazis, he became the equally influential composer of Broadway musicals like One Touch of Venus.

Lyric Fest’s biographies combine songs by the subject with readings from documents like letters and diaries. Lyric Fest has made good use of the video medium, adding newsreel footage and costuming that add to the emotional impact.

We’ve heard Weil’s best-known song, Mack the Knife, but have you heard it in the original German with the chilling effect tenor Richard Troxell produces when he sings it at the end of the first installment? If not, now’s your chance.

What, When, Where, and Accessibility

Lyric Fest will premiere the final installment of Speak Low, a Biography in Music on Saturday, June 26 at 7:30pm on the Lyric Fest website. The video will be available free on-demand. For further information visit Lyric Fest online.

Image Description: Brian Major, a Black person, sings with a spacey background with stars and splashes of color.

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