Theater News

Yiddish Fiddler on the Roof to Present Wednesday Fiddler Talks Series

Joel Grey directs the iconic musical, beginning performances July 4.

Director Joel Grey (center) and the cast of National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene's Fiddler on the Roof.
Director Joel Grey (center) and the cast of National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene's Fiddler on the Roof.
(© Janie Willison)

National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene and the Museum of Jewish Heritage will copresent a special Fiddler-themed Wednesday evening series Fiddler Talks: From Anatevke to Broadway and Back Again. The series is presented in association with NYTF's American premiere of the Yiddish language Fiddler on the Roof, beginning performances at the Museum of Jewish Heritage on July 4 and running through August 26.

The series installments are as follows:

The Making of Fiddler on the Roof (July 18 at 6:30pm): Explore Fiddler's rich history through a conversation featuring Sheldon Harnick, Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning lyricist of Fiddler on the Roof, and Alisa Solomon, acclaimed author of Wonder of Wonders: A Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof.

Transforming Fiddler on the Roof Into Fidler Afn Dakh (July 25 at 6:30pm): Join us for a lively discussion of the journey to bring the Yiddish Fiddler to life. Featuring Joel Grey, director; Staś Kmieć, choreographer; and Zalmen Mlotek, National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene's musical director and artistic director. Moderated by Budd Mishkin.

The Tradition of Fiddler on the Roof (August 1 at 6:30pm): Austin Pendelton, Broadway's original Motel the Tailor, and Staś Kmieć, Fiddler historian, choreographer and veteran cast member, will take on the show's incredible "tradition!"

Sholom Aleichem's Tevye and "Fiddler"; or, "Was Tevye A Traditional Jew?" (August 8 at 6:30pm): Join Ruth Wisse, Harvard University's Martin Peretz Professor of Yiddish Literature and Comparative Literature, for an illuminating talk on Tevye.

Shalom / Sholom The Yiddish Mark Twain (August 22 at 6:30pm): Performance conceived and performed by Bob Spiotto. Sholom Aleichem left his literary mark on the world. Bob Spiotto offers a unique smorgasbord of stories featuring the author's precarious balance of humor, horror, pathos, and philosophical insight, as well as words of wisdom and advice from Tevye, the milkman.

The Yiddish language Fiddler on the Roof, constructed by Israeli actor and director Shraga Friedman in 1965, is directed by Academy Award winner Joel Grey. The cast is led by Jackie Hoffman (Yente), Steven Skybell (Tevye), and Mary Illes (Golde).