Fiddler On The Roof – Manor Musical Theatre Company
Sutton Coldfield Town Hall
Tuesday 24th October 2023 – Dress Rehearsal
By Nigel Gambles
Photography – Nigel Gambles Photography
Tradition – something Manor has always been respectful of, and tradition is the main theme of this classic musical.
This the tale of Tevye, the turn-of the century Russian peasant wishing he were a rich man. Battling the wills of his five daughters and keeping the Jewish faith, as sinister forces infiltrate the peace of an historic village, and modern life starts to shift the balance of power. This production is more earthy than showy, and it was all the better for it. It was a stripped-back piece of theatre performed in a way that gave it an especially human touch and immediacy. Beautifully-textured costumes contrasted the threadbare layers of Russian winters with silky, Sabbath finery. Tam Weir a newcomer to Manor anchored the piece as conflicted Tevye (his third outing in this role) complemented by the wonderfully expressive Paula O’Hare as wife Golde, each trapped in the circumstances of changing times, their duet “Do you love me” was perfect. I’m sure we all remember Topol’s wonderful rendition of “If I Was A Rich Man” well Tam’s doesn’t disappoint.
The three older daughters played by Sasha Marsh (Tzeitel) Malaika Martin (Hodel) and Eliza Tall (Chava) play their roles wonderfully showing their struggles with what tradition dictates and what their own hearts want.
The story flows well, the cast gel superbly, and the show set as it is in 1905, resonates in today’s political landscape even more than the company must have anticipated when it was first programmed in.The importance of community is a message clearly at the heart of this production.
Directors Pam and James Garrington have done an amazing job creating a cast with a strong bond supporting each other and sharing their enjoyment at performing with the audience. The group numbers were performed beautifully and choreographed perfectly by Jennie Mason