Study Guide

The Threepenny Opera ACT III, Scene 7

By Bertolt Brecht

ACT III, Scene 7

That night Peachum prepares his campaign. He plans to disrupt the coronation procession by a demonstration of human misery.

  • The beggars paint signs inside of Peachum's shop, while Peachum and his wife give them advice about how to get the most money out of the people gathered for the Queen's Coronation.
  • Jenny comes in looking for her pay, but Mrs. Peachum refuses because Macheath escaped from jail. Looking for a buck, Jenny tells the Peachums that Macheath is with yet another prostitute, Suky Tawdry.
  • The police show up and Brown arrests Peachum and the rest for begging on the street.
  • Music starts up, and Peachum tells Brown to think about the song, "The Song of the Insufficiency of Human Endeavour".
  • Peachum tells Brown that he should arrest Mac the Knife, not some poor beggars who are celebrating the Coronation in costume.
  • Jenny tells Brown Suky Tawdry's address, and Brown has no choice but to go after him. Then, Jenny sings the "Solomon Song", accompanied by a hurdy-gurdy.