Opera Scotland

Beggar's Opera 1755Mr Adams' Theatrical Company

Read more about the opera Beggar's Opera

The earliest entry on our website so far is, appropriately, for performances of the most popular British opera of the day.   At that era, theatrical performances were required to be licensed in order to charge admission, except at a restricted number of Theatres Royal.   Dundee's Theatre Royal would not be built until 1810, so a visiting company would customarily charge entry for a short 'Concert of Musick' after which would be performed 'Gratis and for Nothing' a play or two.   The Town House was then a handsome new (1734) building on the High Street, designed by William Adam.  It contained a spacious room suitable for assemblies and concerts (and which would later be converted for use as the Council Chamber).

Mr Adams' company performed a range of popular comedies and tragedies of the day by authors such as Rowe, Otway, Fielding, Centlivre, Garrick, Lillo and others.  They also included one Shakespeare play, Othello.  The Beggar's Opera was scheduled for one performance, but a second was slotted in instead of Otway's tragedy The Orphan.

(Data from playbills in Dundee City Library)

Performance Cast

Mr Peachum a 'fence'

Mr Salmon

Filch employee of Peachum

Mr Heyman

Mrs Peachum

Mrs Hamilton

Polly Peachum Peachum's daughter

Miss Hamilton 1

Macheath a highwayman

Mr Keasberry

Matt of the MInt of Macheath's gang

Mr Adams

Lockit the gaoler

Mr Wright

Lucy Lockit Lockit's daughter

Miss Welles

Jenny Diver a woman of the town

Mrs Wright

Production Cast


Mr Adams

Performance DatesBeggar's Opera 1755

Map List

Town House, Dundee | Dundee

21 May, 00.00 6 Jun, 00.00

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