CET’s Fiddler on the Roof Raises the Roof

As the audience walked into the Craft Theater they were taken to a different world, in a different time. From March 16 – 25, CHS’s Community Ensemble Theater (CET) performed “Fiddler on the Roof”, a play by Original New York Stage Production, and based on the novel by Joseph Stein. Directed by CET’s beloved director Quinn Strassel, CET presented a moving story filled with love and family.

The story takes place in a settlement during industrial Russia in 1905. The cast included junior Clarence Collins III playing the lead role of Tevye, sophomore Lily Rosenberg playing the wife of Tevye, and junior Isabel Ratner playing the eldest daughter of Tevye, Tzeitel.

Showing the importance of tradition through song the audience also meets all the charecters for the first time.

Considering the size of Craft Theater, it was amazing to see everyone gather together with the addition of a thrust stage. Throughout the duration of the show, however, the audience couldn’t pay attention to the seating as they laughed, cried, and enjoyed the musical, which would not have been possible without the thrust stage.

Ending the song “To Life” and the scene of the Inn.

The musical ran for two and a half hours which required the cast to stay energetic and lively throughout the show. And nobody was more dynamic and hilarious than Tevye, portrayed perfectly by Collins. Filled with conflict, anger, and love, Collins was able to make the main character seem alive.

Tzeitel, played by junior Isabel Ratner, Hodel, played junior Ellen Reed, and Chava, played by senior Emily Fishman, also gave heartfelt performances as the children of Tevye who fell in love but were not allowed to marry due to the importance of tradition in this settlement.

The Russian soldier’s dances in the Inn scene.


The show also had some devastatingly sad moments. In one moment, Chava expresses her love of Fyedka, a young Russian soldier, to her father. Outraged, Tevye tells Chava to leave him or she is dead to him. Later, Chava returns hoping to talk to a voice of reason in her father, but still—outraged and miserable—Tevye breaks both Chava’s heart and the audience’s as he walks away from a screaming Chava.

However, the show does not only have sad and serious scenes. For example, one of the show’s most hilarious and exciting scenes is when Tevye is in the Inn making an agreement with Lazar Wolf, portrayed by Enrique Ayala. In this scene, the song “To Life” is performed with many dances such as jumping, flips, and line dancing.

“I am thankful to have chosen [Fiddler on the Roof] because it reminds us that all families — even those who argue, struggle, break traditions, love, laugh, and cry together — all families deserve a home where they can ‘live together in peace,’” CET director Quinn Strassel said.

While the show had its ups and downs, CET successfully managed to produce a show filled with the portrayal of struggles, breaking traditions, and the importance of love in a family.