Needs 5 Ratings

Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny 



Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?



Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Teresa Stratas ...
Richard Cassilly ...
Jimmy Mahoney
Astrid Varnay ...
Leocadia Begbick
Cornell MacNeil ...
Trinity Moses
Ragnar Ulfung ...
Arturo Sergi ...
Jacob Schmidt
Vern Shinall ...
Moneybags Billy
Paul Plishka ...
Alaska Wolf Joe
Michael Best ...
Toby Higgins
Klara Barlow ...
Nedda Casei ...
Gwynn Cornell ...
Joann Grillo ...
Isola Jones ...
Louise Wohlafka ...


Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

16 November 1979 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Great production of an unusual if interesting contemporary opera
9 September 2011 | by See all my reviews

I love opera, especially the work of Verdi and Puccini. Having been so thrilled with the Met production of The Ghosts of Versailles, I was recommended The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, another contemporary opera, this time by Kurt Weill.

And I sat down to watch this 1979 Met production, as I very much like Teresa Stratas, Cornell MacNeil and Paul Plishka, and mostly I have been consistently impressed by the many Met productions I've watched.

The opera isn't really a favourite, but I am glad I heard it. The music is interesting and memorable, but in a sense it is a style I just appreciate than love, I am not sure whether it's because I am more familiar with the works of Verdi, Mozart and Puccini or whether I am not completely receptive to Weill's music.

I very much like the story though. Its political themes, how it satirises operas and its structure are very unique and the events are compelling enough.

This is a great production. The music is performed with musicality, and James Levine as ever does a solid job conducting and as always you can tell that he is feeling the music through his bones, although I have heard many criticisms against his speeds(which I don't always agree with but perhaps are justified) that is my idea of a great conductor.

The costumes and sets are not spectacular but they are at least appealing and have the feel of a contemporary opera. Video directing and sound are very good, and John Dexter's staging has many moments of interest, my favourite being the boxing match between MacNeil and Plishka.

The performances are excellent. Teresa Stratas is superb, she puts her lovely lyric voice to great use and shows strong acting. Richard Cassilly is more than an ideal match as Jimmy with his voice more suited to this role than a role like Tannhauser, the now regrettably late Cornell MacNeil a superb Moses giving one of his better performances vocally since adopting a more open sound quality to his voice, Ragnor Ulfung a solid Fatty and Paul Plishka perfect as Joe. My favourite performance of the production is that of Astrid Varnay as Begbick, who in a sense dominates the opera, Varnay with her strong voice and compelling presence is extremely effective.

All in all, great and very interesting production. 9/10 Bethany Cox

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See one user review »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb's Top 10 Stars of 2017

"The IMDb Show" connects the dots between IMDb's Top 10 Stars of 2017 and unwraps some of the most memorable and festive animated holiday specials.

Watch now