The Convict’s Opera

Out of Joint and Sydney Theatre Company presents


“Married! Do you think your Mother and I should have liv’d comfortably so long together, if ever we had been married?”

The world’s first musical – and one of the best – gets a fantastic re-imagining from director Max Stafford-Clark.
Stephen Jeffreys (writer of the Johnny Depp film The Libertine) shifts the setting to a creaking convict ship bound for Australia. To pass the time, the convicts put on an opera – an opera set in the world they’ve left far behind, and will probably never see again…
Meet treacherous highwayman Macheath and sweet Polly Peachum as they juggle love and deceit in the dirty underbelly of 18th century London.

“Listen or be double damned. Your are to rehearse and perform a play for your recreation and education… No imitation of lewd behaviour shall be tolerated. Likewise there shall be no blasphemy and no insertion of scurrilous material like to promote a mutiny… Myself I would favour a bible study class.”

This co-production between Cate Blanchett and Andrew Upton’s Sydney Theatre Company and Out of Joint brings together a cast of talented actor-musicians drawn from Britain and Australia, and features the classic folk songs of the original with some modern musical surprises – and plenty of infamy, intrigue, fun and romance!
Director Max Stafford-Clark
Music arranger Felix Cross