Opening the stage for Fiddler On The Roof


Crowds enter the auditorium, program in hand. The curtains separate as the pit begins to play the song “Tradition,” and the audience hears the sound of a fiddle as the stage begins to come to life. Then, a sultry male voice begins to speak, and the lights are ablaze.

You are being imported to imperial Russia where you meet Tevye and his five daughters: Tzeitel, Hodel, Chava, Shprintze, and Bielke. This is North Kingstown High School’s production of Fiddler on the Roof.

The musical Fiddler on the Roof focuses on Tevye (who is double castby senior Matt Vergun and junior Martin Cooke) and his attempts to maintain his Jewish religion and cultural traditions as outside influences enter his family’s life. Taking place in the small village of Anatevka, a comical matchmaker Yente (played by senior Kayla Albin) prepares to match the three oldest daughters Tzeitel (double cast by seniors Erin Alexander and Elise Felker), Hodel (double cast by seniors Catherine Caswell and Libby McGee), and Chava (double cast by sophomores Maisy Carvalho and Makayla Lane), with their future husband. However, due to the strong-will of these daughters, who wish to marry for love, each one’s choice of a husband moves further and further from tradition and out of the comfort of Tevye’s ideals.

Filled with numerous well known songs like “Matchmaker,” “If I Were a Rich Man,” and “Sunrise, Sunset,” this production of Fiddler on the Roof is bound to give the audience a night to remember.

“Fiddler is such a musical theater classic,” said senior Giuliana Mancini who is double cast as Tevye’s wife Golde with senior Grace Bovenzi. “There are amazing numbers in the show and characters larger than life that excite my cast mates and I just in our first few rehearsals…The show deals with a lot of heavy topics, but all centers around family, love, and traditions, which is something everyone can identify with.”

The show contains many interesting characters and provides an emotional roller-coaster for the audience with its many comical and dramatic scenes that intertwine throughout the play.

“Although there have only been a few rehearsals, I can tell that [Fiddler on the Roof] is going to be absolutely amazing!” said sophomore Maisy Carvalho. “The show has so many different emotions and is incredibly energetic!”

Along with the amazing vocals, dancing, and acting by North Kingstown High School’s best, the set design is also something to look forward to.

The gentleman cast of Fiddler on the Roof.

Designed by alumni Nick Hammond, who graduated in 2015, and built by the NKHS tech crew, this set will have the power to bring each scene together and transport the viewers to another world.

“Throughout the show there are many different layouts of the stage, from the inn set piece to Tevya’s house to a train station,” said Hammond. “I decided to set up the stage, depending on the contents of the different scenes and how much action occurred during the sequence. Sometime the the most minimalist set layout is the most powerful”

The setup of the stage is vital for the performance. There can’t be too much or too little. While set pieces and props fill some scenes, just a backdrop fills others. Each set design sets the scene in a specific way.

“The lighting and space go hand in hand in this to convey the greatest amount focus and direction throughout the show,” said Hammond. “It is all about the balance between these two and then the interaction between the set and the actors that make the set design successful”

Then there comes the day when the rehearsals are over, the sets are built and painted, and everything has finally come together. Costumes are on, makeup is applied, and lines are perfected. Everyone walks into Ms. Caiazza’s room for warm ups with nervous jitters intertwined with rushing excitement flowing through their blood. It’s opening day. The one day the entire production has been working so hard for.

This is their playoffs, their finals, their championship. It’s the day when they can shine.

They walk backstage, everything is ready. Over the loudspeakers they hear senior Leigh Ann Rodgers final words “Now sit back, relax, and enjoy the North Kingstown High School’s Fine Arts Department’s production of Fiddler On The Roof

Crowds are seated in the auditorium, program in hand. The curtains pull apart as the pit begins to play the song “Tradition,” and the audience hears the sound of a fiddle as the stage begins to come to life. Then, a sultry male voice begins to speak, and the lights are ablaze.