A new Fiddler on the Roof is heading towards our Auditorium Theatre at Congress and Michigan, and the “Broadway in Chicago” folks are flooding the airwaves with promo information. But times are hard and tickets are expensive. What to do?
The received wisdom is that the 1971 screen adaptation is “elaborately faithful and musically nearly complete,” so why not just pop a disk into your DVD player and start a sing-along at home?
Anticipating this question, I flew up to Canada last week to catch the new troupe at the Conexus Arts Centre in Regina, Saskatchewan. Really! I did! And I took four people with me, two of whom had never seen Fiddlerbefore (either on stage or on screen). We all had a great time, and we all urge you to go.
Click here to read my full post in JUF online.
Many thanks to Courtney Davis of Troika for helping me arrange my trip, and to Melissa Steinbach of Matchmaking Touring, LLC for the Back Stage Tour.
Follow-Up Interviews coming soon with Set Designer Steve Gilliam & Costume Designer Tony Ray Hicks 🙂
Cast members (& their roles) from left: Brooke Hills (Tzeitel), Billy Holly (Rabbi), Brenne Rimberg (Shprintze), David Andrews Rogers (Music Director), Pamela D. Chabora (Golde), Ted Keener (Vladimir), & David B. Springstead, Sr. (Lazar Wolf).
Some Comments from My Guests
From Jymmi Kaye Demchuk (who had never seen Fiddler before): “I did not know what to expect when I attended the show, but from the opening scene I was captivated by the actor’s voice. The music was very familiar and I settled in to be thoroughly entertained right till the end. The story was easy to follow and the theme is as applicable today as it was so many years ago.”
From Erin Genoway (who had never seen Fiddler before): “I absolutely loved the Fiddler on the Roof production that I saw in Regina. The acting was amazing and the singing was fantastic. At times I felt as if Tevye (played by John Preece) was talking or singing directly to us. This historic account is full of lessons, comedy, culture and it provides such insight and understanding. I loved, loved, loved, the show. Thank you so much for sharing your enthusiasm for Fiddler on the Roof with us.”
From Jackie Kuikman (who remembers having seen Fiddler on stage many years ago): Fiddler tunes have been going through my head all weekend. I found the production very poignant. It was thrilling: it wasn’t just the superb quality of the artists and their exuberance, freshness and an air of chutzpah, but it was a glimpse into shtetl life that was lost in the holocaust. That lent an air of sadness for me.”
From Emma Rousseau (who had seen Fiddler on screen but had never seen a performance on stage before): “I found the acting superb. It brought such laughter because song, gestures etc fit so well. It also touched my heart in those instances when change was resisted/reconsidered/finally accepted or agreed to. Was I in a ‘different’ space that night or was the production that good? What a gift!”