Local acting group fiddles to success

In the early 1900s, violent riots and attacks took place in an effort to purge the Jewish population from Russia. These attempts were called pogroms, known today as ethnic cleansing. While these events caused damaging results, people have found ways of looking back on them in a light-hearted manner.

On the weekends of Feb. 14-15 and 21-22, Duncan Little Theater (DLT) presented “Fiddler on the Roof,” a story about a Jewish peasant family in pre-revolutionary Russia. Most of the story centers around the main character, Tevye, his five daughters, and their inevitable rebellion against his precious Tradition.

Junior Alyssa Flesher plays Tzeitel, who struggles to tell her father that she wants to decide who she will marry without the help of a matchmaker, the usual tradition. Tzeitel wants to marry the man her heart belongs to, Motel, played by senior Hudson Moore. Eliza Mobley plays Hodel, the daughter pining after the “revolutionary” Perchik, acted by Craig Lovett. The bibliophile Chava is played by senior Sydney Henricks, who falls for one of Tsar’s soldiers Fyedka, played by senior John Mirth.

Each person in the cast all brought a new, but also authentic, portrayal of their roles. Many of the actors took on culturally correct — and highly comical — accents to get into character. There was a believable balance of humor and trauma; they made me laugh, and then cry, with each line delivery and scene runthrough.

Not only was the acting excellent, the vocal aspect of the show was equally impressive. Songs such as “Sunrise Sunset” really showed off the voices of the cast and I was highly impressed with the overall quality of sound.

The dancing in the show was another great spectacle. Two stand-out scenes were the celebratory dance in a bar where the Russians quite comically tried to teach the Jews some of their moves and the dance at the wedding where cast members balanced bottles on their heads, all the while performing a number of challenging steps. This choreography obviously required an ample amount of concentration and strength, and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one highly impressed they were not only able to pull it off but also make it look so easy.

In the end, all of these aspects came together to tell the story of  “Fiddler on the Roof” in a truly professional way. This is probably the most flawless performance I’ve seen from DLT.

My favorite part about DLT productions is watching the whole community come together. Whether on the stage, behind the curtains or in the audience, everyone in the town shows up to enjoy a wonderful show with each other.