The Pitch reviews “Fiddler on the Roof”

April 29, 2015

Deborah Hirsch, The Pitch

Spinning Tree’s “Fiddler on the Roof” travels well through time

Fiddler on the Roof turned 50 last year, but the musical doesn’t show its age. Despite being steeped in traditions and, for most of us, an old and far-removed way of life, the story is so fundamentally human that it remains vibrant and contemporary. Its world isn’t so distant, in some ways, from our own.

Spinning Tree Theatre’s Michael Grayman and Andy Parkhurst have grabbed hold of the story’s essence and created a thoughtful, funny and moving production in the intimate Just Off Broadway Theatre.

Tevye (Gary Neal Johnson), a poor milkman in 1905 imperial Russia, is our first glimpse into the village of Anatevka and its Jewish community. “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,” he says. “And how do we keep our balance? … tradition.”

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