Tradition! Studio Tenn Plays Like a ‘Fiddler on the Roof’

IMG_1300FRANKLIN, Tenn.  For the past 50 years Fiddler on the Roof has delighted and touched the hearts of audiences the world over. Now as the new theater season dawns Studio Tenn Theatre Company pays tribute with its own fresh take on one of musical theater’s most enduring shows starting Thursday and running through Sept. 21 in Studio Tenn’s new Jamison Hall home at The Factory at Franklin. Tickets are going fast; they may be purchased by clicking here or by calling (888) 664-6362.

Based on a collection of stories by Yiddish author Sholem Aleichem adapted by Joseph Stein, Fiddler on the Roof tells of Tevye, a poor but devout Jewish milkman living in 1905 Imperial Russia. As his five daughters grow up and seek husbands, Tevye and his family struggle to uphold their religious convictions, traditions and relationships. The show features music by Jerry Bock and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick.

Fiddler on the Roof has captivated audiences all around the world for half a century,” says Managing Director Jake Speck. “We feel the timing couldn’t be more perfect to bring this blockbuster masterpiece to Franklin.”

IMG_1366Studio Tenn’s production will again combine big-time talent from New York and Nashville: Tevye will be played by Peter Kevoian, whose credits include the original Broadway cast of Phantom of the Opera, the Zorba Broadway revival, the Chicago productions of Wicked and Ragtime, and the Original Canadian Cast of Sunset Boulevard. Kevoian also appeared in the role of Herod in the national tour revival of Jesus Christ Superstar, in the Los Angeles production of Les Miserables and the Los Angeles production and First National tour of Cats. Studio Tenn company member and recurring critics’ favorite Nan Gurley will co-star as Tevye’s wife, Golde.

In addition to the telling of Tevye’s plight, Artistic Director Matt Logan says there’s an important substory in the costumes. “All the characters’ lives center on their positions in society, dictated largely by their vocations as tradesmen, such as shoemakers, milkmen, tailors, and butchers,” Logan shares. “Their daily activity shows in how their clothes are tattered and worn. That element of distress is a central part of my design for this show.

“In this era, clothing was only made with natural fabrics, such as linen and wool,” Logan adds. “The balance of all these crude textiles creates a rich tapestry that tells the story of hardworking people who dress more for function than form.”

The set, constructed of juxtaposed wood and metal, will be primitive and rustic. While Logan tends to favor abstract, interpretive sets over literal ones he says, “I hope to evoke realistic emotions brought on by the basic elements of daily life on a farm in Russia.” Props such as a cast iron stove, butter churn, horse saddles, rusted milk cans, knotted rope, window panes, and wagon wheel chandeliers will populate Logan’s portrayal of early century 20th peasantry.

IMG_1022To help kick off the new season and their new home at The Factory, Studio Tenn recently announced their partnership with Saffire Restaurant. Patrons will now have the option to a specially priced pre-show dinner for all Thursday evening performances or a brunch package for any Sunday afternoon show. To find out more about this special dinner/brunch package, please visit here to find out more, view the menu options, as well as to make reservations.

Studio Tenn will also celebrate a milestone of its own with “Fiddler”: the opening of its first full season in The Factory, the company’s new permanent performance home. This season—Studio Tenn’s fifth—celebrates “blockbuster” theatre that has had marked influence both on the stage and on the screen. Selections include “Steel Magnolias,” “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “The Wizard of Oz.” “The Cash Legacy,” a brand new, all-original Studio Tenn production featuring the music of Johnny Cash, will also debut this season.

IMG_1155CAST

TEVYE…………………………… PETER KEVOIAN
GOLDE……………………………… NAN GURLEY
MOTEL……………. JEFFERSON CARSON
PERCHIK……………. CALEB MARSHALL
FYEDKA………………….. JORDAN WRIGHT
TZEITEL……………….. MIA ROSE LYNNE
HODEL…………………………. LISSA DE GUZMAN
CHAVA………………………………. ANNABELLE FOX
SHPRINTZE…..………………… ISABELLA FLORY
YENTE, GRANDMA TZEITEL ………….. KIM BRETTON
LAZAR WOLFE…………………… RICHARD DANIEL
FRUMA SARAH & OTHERS………………….. JANETTE BRUCE
FIDDLER, MENDEL…………….. DOUGLAS WATERBURY-TIEMAN
CONSTABLE……………………. JEREMY CHILDS
RABBI…………………………………….. JOHN SILVESTRO

ENSEMBLE:

MATT BIRDSONG
NEAL BUCKLEY
KATIE DAVIS
CASEY HEBBEL
CLAIRE KAPUSTKA
ALEX RADER
DAVID SHAMBURGER
MATTHEW TAYLOR

 

*Photos and video by ANTHONYMATULA courtesy Studio Tenn.

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