After an extended sold-out run at the Museum of Jewish Heritage and the announcement of an upcoming transfer to Off-Broadway’s Stage 42, the recent production of Fiddler on the Roof from the National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene will record a cast album to be released in 2019. The recording from Time Life Music will be distributed by Warner Music Group. A release date has not yet been set.
The production first opened July 15 in the Edmond J. Safra Theatre at the Museum. Directed by Joel Grey, Fiddler stars Steven Skybell as Tevye, Emmy nominee and Broadway veteran Jackie Hoffman as Yente, and Jennifer Babiak as Golde. It was set for a limited run through August 26, but due to popular demand extended to September 2, again to October 25, again to November 18, and finally to December 30. It will bow at its new venue in February 2019.
The cast recording includes many of the production’s original cast members and features bonus tracks cut from the 1964 production of Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway. The cast recording is being produced by seven-time Grammy Award-nominee Robert Sher, co-produced by Dan Moses Schreier, and Executive Produced by David Garfinkle and NYTF CEO Christopher Massimine, with orchestrations by Larry Blank.
Performed in Yiddish—as are all of the productions from NYTF—this Fiddler features a translation by Shraga Friedman, first used in a performance in Israel in 1965. NYTF artistic director Zalmen Mlotek grew up listening to the album of that Israeli production, and now future generations will have this album to preserve his. The production is accompanied by supertitles in English and Russian.
“Having been a part of cast albums as an actor since 1966 (Cabaret, George M!, The Grand Tour, Goodtime Charley, Chicago, Wicked, Anything Goes), I’ve had the privilege of preserving these stories and it was never less than a memorable experience,” Grey says. “Fiddler, however, is my first cast album as the director. Needless to say, I’m a longtime fan of the original production and it was a joy to create this new version in Yiddish. With this superb company of actors, perhaps we might be creating an event for the ages.”
The album will feature Hoffman, Skybell, and Babiak as well as Joanne Borts (Sheyndl); Doug Chitel (Ensemble); Michael Einav (Ensemble); Jessica Rose Futran (Ensemble); Kirk Geritano (Avrom); John Giesige (Ensemble); Lydia Gladstone (Ensemble); Abby Goldfarb (Ensemble); Stephanie Lynne Mason (Hodl); Maya Jacobson (Ensemble); Cameron Johnson (Fyedke); Josh Kohane (Ensemble); Ben Liebert (Motl); Moshe Lobel (Ensemble); Rosie Jo Neddy (Khave); Raquel Nobile (Shprintze); Jonathan Quigley (Ensemble); Nick Raynor (Ensemble); Bruce Sabath (Leyzer-Wolf); Drew Seigla (Pertshik); Adam B. Shapiro (Der Rov (Rabbi)); Jodi Snyder (Frume-Sore); James Monroe Števko (Mendl); Lauren Jeanne Thomas (Der Fiddler); Bobby Underwood (Der Gradavoy (Constable)); and, Rachel Zatcoff (Tzeitel). Previous cast participating are: Kayleen Seidl (Ensemble); Michael Yashinsky (Mordkhe/Nokhum); Evan Mayer(Sasha); Lisa Fishman (Bobe Tsaytl); Grant Richards (Ensemble); and, Samantha Hahn (Beylke).
With musical staging and choreography by Staś Kmieć, Fiddler features scenic design by Beowulf Boritt, costume design by Ann Hould-Ward, lighting design by Peter Kaczorowski, sound design by Dan Moses Schrier, hair and wig design by Tom Watson, and casting by Jamibeth Margolis.
Fiddler on the Roof was written by Joseph Stein with music by Jerry Bock and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, originally directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins. Harnick and producer/director Harold Prince consulted on the current NYTF production.