This is not one of the indelible contributions to the musical stage of Weill's German period nor one of the dazzling Broadway scores which immediately marked the emigre from Hitlers Europe as another of the superbly talented immigrants who sparked American cultural life. It is Weill, in the valley of statelessness, seeking to establish himself with a not too heavy offering for a new audience. The book, even as reworked for this recent Viennese revival, is routine, more burlesque than theatrical, the music a modification of the strong melodies of his Brechtian collaboration but not yet the American associating himself with such as Ira Gershwin, Maxwell Anderson, and Langston Hughes, among others. Dead at age 50, he was still able to establish himself as an influential figure in the development of the finest of American musical theater.
My rating is not based on the aesthetics of this production as compared to either Weill's or any other composer of theatrical musicals. Rather, it is strictly consonant with Amazon's definition, how much did I like it. What I intend to convey was that I enjoyed this vehicle not only for its significance in understanding one of my favorite composers of theater music but for its own merit as a kind-of-knockabout "let's put on a show" offering. For one who can get into the mood of a 'lets take this music with this kind of "fun" book" and see what we can do with it" approach, it makes for an enjoyable evening. For one who is looking for a mega-expensive Broadway crowd pleaser, this might well be an awful bore.