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Pamela Katz

Nan A. Talese (March 15, 2019)

“Her work as a novelist and screenwriter helps her keep the pacing swift and the prose dynamic — the chapters on the creation of “The Threepenny Opera” are almost unbearably suspenseful. If the characterizations of the three women of the subtitle seem selected for contrast — sturdy Weigel, sensual Lenya, timid Hauptmann — she offers a real and empathetic sense of how Brecht and Weill walked and spoke and dressed (and in the case of the unwashed Brecht, how he smelled).”

—New York Times

Pamela Katz vividly portrays the tempestuous collaboration between the renegade poet and playwright, Bertolt Brecht, and the gifted composer, Kurt Weill. They were the geniuses who created the theatrical and musical masterworks The Threepenny Opera and Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny amid the most turbulent years of the twentieth century.


New York Times review
Wall Street Journal review
New Yorker review


  • Talk and concert at Barnes and Noble (Upper East Side branch), New York, NY

  • Talk and concert at Politics and Prose Bookstore, Washington, DC

  • Talk and concert at McNally Jackson Books, New York, NY

  • Talk and concert at Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY

  • Talk and concert at Gramercy Arts Center, New York,

  • NY Talk and concert at Brooklyn Reading Works at The Old Stone House, Brooklyn, NY

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About the Author

Author and screenwriter Pamela Katz, the child of a German émigré, has often explored the complex past of the European refugees that populated the Upper West Side of Manhattan where she was raised. Drawn to the brilliant personalities of the Weimar Republic, her latest film, the internationally acclaimed Hannah Arendt — winner of two German Academy awards, Best Foreign Film in Japan, and one of New York Times critic A.O. Scott's Top Ten Films of 2013 — hints at some of the intellectual and cultural themes she explores more fully in her new book, The Partnership. Katz, an erudite and entertaining speaker, who teaches screenwriting at the NYU Graduate School of Film, presents her work at festivals and universities around the world. She is best known for the dramatic historical films she’s written in collaboration with the legendary director Margarethe von Trotta. These include Rosenstrasse, about German civilian resistance to Hitler, The Other Woman, about the Stasi Romeos in former East Germany, and Hannah Arendt, portraying the German Jewish philosopher’s controversial encounter with the Nazi Adolf Eichmann. In The Partnership, Katz turns her attention to Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill, the writer and composer who created The Threepenny Opera. In this, her first non-fiction work, Katz offers a richly detailed portrait of a celebrated artistic relationship, giving her readers an intimate glimpse of Weimar Republic through the eyes of the artists who created the beguiling gangster Macheath and the song, “The Moritat of Mack the Knife”.



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