Fiddler on the Roof
Jerry Bock - Sheldon Harnick
Fiddler On the Roof is the greatest musical of all time.
Days meld into one as sunrise follows sunset in the Ukrainian village of Anatevka in 1905. As a Jewish community in Imperial Russia, it’s set in its ways, from what people can eat to how they sleep, and how girls are successfully married off. Tevye the Milkman cherishes his Jewish roots, despite conflicts flaring up and the sense of doom brought by the approach of the Czar’s Gendarmerie.
Fiddler’s songs are a medley of melancholy and optimism. Tevye looks at the changes taking place around him through warm-hearted humour, always hoping for the best.
History repeats itself. Who are we allowed to be, and where are we allowed to live? Who are we allowed to love?
Fiddler on the Roof, or Anatevka, is performed in German.
Laiden with happiness and tears.
Our visiting opera company this summer is Theater Hagen from the Ruhr region in Germany. The theatre is located in the midst of large cities in an area with a broad opera offering. Theater Hagen stands out from the crowd with its fresh, inventive repertoire.
See synopsis here.
Theater Hagen’s visit also brings us the new Finnish opera A Room of One’s Own and the dreamlike psychological drama Bluebeard’s Castle. See more here.
a medley of melancholy and optimism
Life in early 20th century Russia was full of tension. Pogroms, violent attacks on Jews, were intensifying, and the country was on the threshold of a revolution. As Tevye says:
”A fiddler on the roof. Sounds crazy, no? But here, in our little village of Anatevka, you might say every one of us is a fiddler on the roof trying to scratch out a pleasant, simple tune without breaking his neck. It isn’t easy.”