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Fiddler On The Roof In Yiddish Is Brilliant! REVIEW

Fiddler On The Roof In Yiddish Is Brilliant! REVIEW

NAUGHTY GOSSIP just saw a preview of an extraordinary piece of theatre. FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, the first-ever New York production in Yiddish, at The Museum of Jewish Heritage in Battery Park. Co-produced by The National Yiddish Theatre. Directed by Joel Grey.

I always thought Fiddler opened with a great first line: “A fiddler on the roof! Crazy, no?”

Well now it’s a brilliant first line for a Yiddish production of the show–

“A fiddler afn dakh! Meshuge, nit?”

After Tevye delivered it there was a long, sustained, warm laugh. It’s as if the entire audience was saying, “Wow, we’re really going to do this…Fiddler in Yiddish! Okay, I’ll go for the ride!” and we were all in Tevye’s pocket from then on.

We loved every second and every inch of this production. In these days of producers, directors and choreographers thinking they can do better than the likes of Robbins, DeMille, Fosse and the like, they opted for the original ravishing Robbins choreography modified only in scale. Orchestra of 12 and it was first rate. A minimalist set composed of chairs and hanging sheets of parchment paper–the stuff used for Torah scrolls–and it’s used to dramatic effect throughout, especially in Tevye’s Dream and the pogrom. The translation is also projected on two of these sheets of parchment though not many needed it. My guest didn’t even bother to follow it–not necessary.

Hearing this show in the mother tongue of the characters was unspeakably beautiful, soulful and, at times, gut-wrenching. We were both dishrags after it.

It has already been extended to run to September 2nd. YOU MUST SEE THIS SHOW!

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