Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Strong Tevye Keeps 'Fiddler' Zeroed in for Summer Show ; Theater Review

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Strong Tevye Keeps 'Fiddler' Zeroed in for Summer Show ; Theater Review

Article excerpt

To be successful, a production of "Fiddler on the Roof" requires a strong performer to play Tevye, the dairyman and father of five daughters who is struggling to hold onto his Jewish religious traditions amid a changing world. For its summer musical production of the award-winning Broadway show, the Public Education Foundation and Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. struck gold in recent North High School graduate Allen Karch.

From his complicated but endearing relationships with his five daughters, his arguments with his wife Golda, and his vision for a better future - Karch quickly proves to be the perfect match for the role.

The summer musical production of "Fiddler on the Roof" opened Thursday night to a packed audience in Old National Events Plaza's Aiken Theatre for a performance lasting almost three hours with a 20-minute intermission. But a three-hour show didn't seem to faze the performers, with all of them giving a tireless performance until the final curtain.

The show, which is directed by Sue Schriber and produced by Amy Walker, hits its stride almost immediately with a stage-filling opening of "Tradition," where the audience meets Tevye and the people of Anatevka.

The three oldest daughters - Tzeitel, played by Sarah Brown, Hodel, played by Audrey Ferguson, and Chava, played by Katelynn Fahrer - are charming in "Matchmaker," where they quickly show off their individual personalities.

Tevye's wife Golda, played by Claire Mumford, depicts a strong woman with an even stronger attitude, but she reveals a softer side when it comes to matchmaking for her children.

Karch's first solo piece in "If I Were a Rich Man" is commanding, humorous and charismatic from start to finish. At the end of his performance, the audience seemed to forget that these were students performing and not Broadway professionals.

Another memorable performance is "To Life," where Tevye and Lazar Wolf, played by AJ Mason, celebrate a marriage agreement. …

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