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Joseph Stein's

Fiddler on the Roof

April 23rd - October 20thFestival TheatreTicket Info
Generally Positive Reviews based on 24 Critics
24 Reviews

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This is a listing for the 2013 season. For the current 2024 shows click here.

The Globe and Mail - J Kelly Nestruck

A Canadian classic

“Fiddler’s story of tensions between adapting and assimilation, tradition and change – and how there never really is a single, right choice – is one that resonates strongly in a Canadian context. The multicultural cast of Jews and Russians at Stratford with their diversity of accents only emphasizes the universality of the tale.”

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The American Conservative - Noah Millman

Deeply devoted to god and his daughters

As Tevye Scott Wentworth plays “not for us… but for an audience of himself, and his God…Tevye is deeply devoted to his daughters (like Job before him), and Wentworth gets a great deal of support from all of his three eldest…Jennifer Stewart, Jacquelyn French and Keely Hutton.

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The Record - Robert Reid

Light amongst a dark historical backdrop

Reid reminds us that “Fiddler gains depth as a musical because of its literary foundation against a deeply troubling historical backdrop….Feore doesn’t shy away from the theme of anti-Semitism, but…doesn’t allow darkness to usurp the light.”

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The Toronto Star - Richard Ouzounian

Forget any Fiddler on the Roof you...

Ouzounian enjoyed just about every aspect of Stratford’s “Fiddler on the Roof”, which he stated is “done to perfection”. Along with the direction, he praises “the brilliantly brooding shadows of Michael Walton’s lighting”, and the comedic performances of Jones, Ross, Kushiner, and Markus.

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The London Free Press - John Coulbourn

Less Borscht Belt more Anatevka

Coulbourn praises the show overall, but notes “Where Tevye spend his days talking to God, [Scott] Wentworth instead spends much of his time talking to his audience, like a time-travelling Jackie Mason set loose in the Borscht Belt of the Urals.”

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The National Post - Robert Cushman

Great acting, production

Cushman gives kudos to [Tom] Rooney in “Measure for Measure” for “a magnificent, searching performance of a man obsessed with law and morality, and convinced that they’re the same thing”. He calls Stratford’s “Fiddler on the Roof” as a whole “the hero here”.

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Stratford Gazette - Chet Greason

Key choreography incorporated

“The directors fully understand the percussive potential of snapping fingers and stomping feet, and have their cast utilizing these whenever possible, moving the audience to snap and clap along. One audience member, sitting close by this reviewer, even caught himself singing along to If I Were a Rich Man at one point, and, really, who could blame him?”

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The New Hamburg Independent - J.T. Jordan

Historical and cultural accuracy...

“Great pain has gone into the historical and cultural accuracy of the production. Most recognizable is the traditional Jewish wedding re-enacted to the smallest detail. Also outstanding historically and visually are the exciting dances, especially the breath-taking Russian numbers and the original choreography to the Bottle Dance.”

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The Slotkin Letter - Lynn Slotkin

Feore remains true to Robbins'...

Slotkin states “You cannot do a Jerome Robbins musical without adhering exactly to the Jerome Robbins choreography according to the dictates of his estate.” She notes director “Feore has been true to Robbins’ rousing choreography but she goes further than that and has her gifted company of dancers and actors instil the passion and zest for life of all of them into the show.”

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The Hamilton Spectator - Gary Smith

Still fresh as it was in 1964

Smith notes that as with many productions of “Fiddler on the Roof,” “There’s no one correct Tevye, Golde or even Yente the Matchmaker…At Stratford, Wentworth explores a gruffer, less warm vision of the man. Yet when he cries for his lost daughter, Chava, marrying outside the faith, you cry with him.”

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Milwaukee Journal Sentinel - Mike Fischer

Thematic unity no accident

Fischer finds common themes in the various productions he saw, including “Tommy”, “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Waiting For Godot” and a preview of “Taking Shakespeare”. He notes “Cimolino has succeeded, spectacularly — allowing plays written and set centuries apart to speak to each other and to us in new ways.”

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Chicago Tribune - Chris Jones

Mary Stuart a juicy treat, Taking...

Jones states “Taking Shakespeare” “feels like one of those contrived dramas written expressly to fill a slot”. He regards “Mary Stuart”, “Waiting for Godot” and “Blithe Spirit”. He gives kudos to Stewart, French and Hutton in “Fiddler on the Roof” and Kushnier and Nolan in “Tommy”.

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The Beat Magazine - Geoff Dale

A surefire hit to the end

“Not a moment is wasted in this eye-catching, pulse-racing production. Feore and a first-rate company of actors, singers, dancers and musicians keep the audience spell-bound. The Stratford Festival retains its preeminence in the production of quality musical theatre.”

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La Scena Musicale - Paul E. Robinson

Close to original production

“Director Donna Feore adhered closely to the spirit and style of the original 1964 Jerome Robbins presentation in this production of Fiddler. She made no attempt to ‘make it different’ simply to be different. It appeared to be enough for her to remain faithful to the original concept, and strive to be worthy of it.”

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Robyn's Reviews - RL Godfrey

"The best of the best" cast and...

Feore’s production was “much warmer, richer and thus more rewarding” than the last version of “Fiddler on the Roof” at Stratford. Godfrey’s review singles out Feore’s use of the play’s traditions and colour.

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Entertain This Thought - Mary Alderson

Feore takes full advtantage

“Credit goes to director-choreographer Donna Feore for taking full advantage of the great story, and making it relevant today. She has brought together the 1905 stories with the 1964 Broadway opening and the 1971 movie, and made it all work in 2013…The choreography is amazing in all regards. The Russian Cossack dance scene in the bar room has great energy.”

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Stage Door - Christopher Hoile

Wentworth lacks emotional core

Hoile loved Feore’s “Fiddler on the Roof”. However, he found “With Wentworth, there’s a versatile central showman but no emotional core.” He believed Stewart, French, and Hutton “beautifully acted and sung” in their performances, and called French’s “the most compelling”.

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Artes Magazine - Herbert Simpson

Not one false note

“This is a production of Fiddler on the Roof worth treasuring; I hope they film it…There is not one false note: no obvious joking or exaggerations, no easy or corny laughs, no tricks or virtuosic movement for its own sake, but clearly exemplary virtuosity…”

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Southgate News Herald - Phillip Dorian

Different from each other in style...

Dorian regards “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Measure for Measure”, “Romeo and Juliet” and “Tommy”. He praises Feore’s “inspired direction and choreography” in “Fiddler on the Roof” and the “successful ensemble effort” in “Measure for Measure”. Dorian calls Topham “a luminous Juliet” and states “Cilento’s choreography is thrilling”.

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Broadway World - Lauren Gienow

Sure to dazzle audiences of all ages

Gienow states the musical “is relatable to all who experience it because at its core, it is about the struggles that any family and community can and do face everyday.” She notes the cast “excels in this moving production, leaving not a dry eye in the room.”

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Democrat and Chronicle - Jack Garner

Shakespeare is the festival's bread...

Garner states “Othello” is “extremely well-played”, “Taking Shakespeare” “fabulous” and compares “Waiting for Godot” to “a great modern painting by Picasso or Pollock”. He thought “Fiddler on the Roof” was “easily the best” he’s seen and “The Merchant of Venice” was “very good”.

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