I’ve seen Fiddler on the Roof five times and this version at the Shea’s Performing Arts Center is the best of the bunch. The story of Tevye, a Jewish milkman in the small Russian town of Anatevka in 1905, and his wife Golde and their five daughters lights up the stage in this updated musical. Director Barlett Sher’s staging for this touring company reflects his innovations for the Broadway production. Things are changing in Russia and those changes are reaching Tevye’s family. The musical starts with a song of “Tradition” which introduces one of the themes of this play. Tevye would like to stick with Tradition, but the marriages of his daughters test his resolve. Yehezkel Lazarov, who plays Tevye brilliantly in this touring version of Fiddler on the Roof, finds his ideals and religion tested as his daughters marry…untraditionally. I really enjoyed the performances of Mel Weyn as Tzeitel, Ruthy Froch as Hodel, and Natalie Powers as Chava. They sing the classic “Matchmaker, Matchmaker” in their innocence ignorant of the fates that await them. (My favorite is the bookish Chava!)

The dance sequences burst with energy, especially the fabulous Bottle Dance. Classic songs like “Sunrise, Sunset” and “If I Were a Rich Man” sound great! If this wonderful touring musical shows up in your neighborhood, I highly recommend it! GRADE: A
Act I
“Prologue: Tradition” – Tevye and Company
“Matchmaker, Matchmaker” – Tzeitel, Hodel and Chava
“If I Were a Rich Man” – Tevye
“Sabbath Prayer” – Tevye, Golde, Company
“To Life” – Tevye, Lazar Wolf, Russian soloist and Men
“Tevye’s Monologue” – Tevye
“Miracle of Miracles” – Motel
“Tevye’s Dream” – Tevye, Golde, Grandma Tzeitel, Rabbi, Fruma-Sarah and Company
“Sunrise, Sunset” – Tevye, Golde, Perchik, Hodel and Company
“The Bottle Dance” – Instrumental
Act II
“Entr’acte” – Orchestra
“Now I Have Everything” – Perchik and Hodel
“Tevye’s Rebuttal” – Tevye
“Do You Love Me?” – Tevye and Golde
“The Rumor/I Just Heard” – Yente and Villagers §
“Far From the Home I Love” – Hodel
“Chavaleh (Little Bird)” – Tevye
“Anatevka” – The Company

10 thoughts on “FIDDLER ON THE ROOF

  1. Jeff Meyerson

    Glad you enjoyed it. We’ve seen FIDDLER several times too – first was shortly after we got married, when the play was in its sixth year on Broadway. We saw Paul Lipson, then the understudy but soon the replacement Tevye. I wasn’t that impressed with him. In 1984 we saw it in London, with Topol, who starred in the 1971 movie version and did it on stage many, many times. He was excellent. In 1995 we even saw Harvey Fierstein of all people play Tevye in the fourth Broadway production. And we’ve seen the film probably a dozen times. I believe we also saw a high school production because the son of a friend was in it. (He went on to do sitcoms in California.) It’s a timeless show.

    1. george Post author

      Jeff, timeless is a great adjective to describe FIDDLER ON THE ROOF. Classic story, wonderful characters! This touring version is top-notch!

      1. Rick Robinson

        Too bad NY doesn’t to Vote-By-Mail the way Oregon, Washington and Colorado do. We just drop our ballots off at the local library, and done. We voted over a week ago. So easy! Plus it saves a bundle, not having to set up all those polling places.

      2. Jeff Meyerson

        It was surprisingly busy here too this morning when we voted. I was around #275, pretty high for that time of the morning in an off-year election, especially as it was pouring rain at the time. It seemed mostly retirement age people, not really surprising. People vote before work or after work, and the rain is finally ending. But we really, really need a better system. New York City has had massive delays all day. I don’t know if it is true, but the claim is that all the scanners that have gone down have been affected by the rain! Seems the wet hands get on the ballots, and when they go in the scanner, kerblooie! My guess is, there are just too many voters for the machines, plus we had two pages for each voter that had to be scanned separately. We need to get early voting and we really need to go all-mail like Oregon.

  2. Elgin Bleecker

    George – Thanks for the review. I hope this show comes to a theater close to us. I’ve only seen the movie, but remember the clever lines from, “If I Were A Rich Man,” like: “There would be one long staircase just going up, and one even longer coming down…” On Voting – Seemed like a light turnout at my polling place. In 2016 there was a long line.

    1. george Post author

      Elgin, you’re in for a treat if FIDDLER ON THE ROOF shows up in your neighborhood. One of the commentators on CNBC this morning said, “The Republicans didn’t win. The Democrats didn’t win. Gridlock won.”


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