“ENTIRELY FRESH, FUNNY & GORGEOUS!” – New York Magazine
A rich new musical based on an old story about fathers and daughters, husbands and wives, and life, love, and laughter. Featuring the musical hits “Tradition,” “Sunrise, Sunset,” “If I Were A Rich Man,” “Matchmaker, Matchmaker,” and “To Life (L’Chaim!)”. The Tony Award-winning director Bartlett Sher, Tony Award-winning writer Joseph Stein, and Pulitzer Prize winners Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick bring you this fresh and authentic new version of the beloved theatrical masterpiece, which features a talented cast, lavish orchestra, and stunning movement and dance from Israeli choreographer Hofesh Shechter, based on the original staging by Jerome Robbins. The Buell Theatre in Denver, CO is the best place to watch Fiddler on the Roof. Get some tickets and raise a glass to happiness! To love! To life!
“★★★★★! A magnificent, life-affirming production.” – DAVID COTE, TIME OUT NEW YORK
“BEAUTIFUL & STIRRING. A SUPERB PRODUCTION.” – DAVID ROONEY, THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER
“ELECTRIFYING! A SUPERB NEW PRODUCTION.” – CHARLES ISHERWOOD, THE NEW YORK TIMES
Set in the village of Anatevka in Imperial Russia around 1905, where lives are as precarious as the perch of a fiddler on a roof. Fiddler on the Roof is based on Tevye and his Daughters (or Tevye the Dairyman) and other tales by Sholem Aleichem. The story centers on Tevye, a milkman with a lame horse, leaving him to pull the milk cart alone. Tevye is an old Jewish man in an old Jewish settlement, and he tries his best to maintain his Jewish religious and cultural traditions, but the world around him is changing, outside influences encroach upon his family’s lives, and he must cope with the strong-willed actions of his three older daughters who each wish to marry for love rather than have an arranged marriage. Tevye despairs as their choices of husbands are successively less palatable, pushing his boundaries on religion to breaking.
Tzeitel, his eldest, is enamored with Motel the tailor, but he is poor and is saving up to buy a sewing machine before he approaches Tevye, to show that he can support a wife. Tevye, however is approached by Lazar, the rich butcher in town. He agrees to allow their marriage because his daughter will be well-off with a rich butcher. But Tzeitel is devastated, until Motel arrives and tells Tevye that he is the perfect match for Tzeitel and that they promised to marry, and as his wife, Tzeitel will not starve. Tevye is appalled by this break with tradition but impressed by the timid tailor’s courage. Tevye decides to allow them to marry, after some soul-searching, but he worries about telling his wife Golde.
Hodel falls in love with Perchik, a book seller from the village, who is giving lessons to Tevye’s younger daughters. Just before he decides to leave the village and travel to Kyiv to work for the revolution he proposes marriage to Hodel, admitting that he loves her, and says that he will send for her. They tell Tevye that they are engaged, but he is appalled that they are flouting tradition by making their own match, especially as Perchik is leaving. After more soul searching, Tevye relents, the world is changing, he must change with it, and he gives them his blessing and his permission.
Finally, Tevye’s third daughter, the bookish Chava, is teased and intimidated by some gentile youths. One, Fyedka, protects her, dismissing the others. He offers Chava the loan of a book, and a secret relationship begins. When Chava finally gathers the courage to ask Tevye to allow her marriage to Fyedka. Again, Tevye reaches deep into his soul, but marriage outside the Jewish faith is a line he will not cross. He forbids Chava to speak to Fyedka again.
The original Broadway production of the show, which premiered in 1964, had the longest run in musical theater history, with over 3,000 performances. Fiddler on the Roof held the record for the longest-running Broadway musical for nearly ten years until Grease surpassed it. The production was extremely profitable and well-received. It received nine Tony Awards for best musical, score, book, direction, and choreography. It spawned five Broadway revivals and a highly successful 1971 film adaptation, and it has remained popular on a global scale. It’s also a popular choice for school and community plays.
“A great Tevye, and Burstein is nothing short of a miracle, finding the modern mensch in Tevye, as well as the hard-nosed, belief-bound peasant. Rather than bluster or roar his way through the role, Burstein has a delicate, almost motherly touch, kibbitzing with God for laughs and tearing out our hearts by the end. No other actor could juggle the comedy and tragedy masks with such style, such a bittersweet dance with tradition.”
– Review by David Cote for TimeOut NY.