International actor Topol, known for playing Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof on stage and screen, would have headlined as the lusty Greek who teaches a young man to be more hedonistic.
The Crete-set musical by composer John Kander, lyricist Fred Ebb and librettist Joseph Stein is based on the Nikos Kazantzakis novel, "Zorba the Greek" (also known as a 1965 film starring Anthony Quinn and Alan Bates).
The bull-like Quinn starred in a revised 1983 revival of the zesty 1968 musical. Herschel Bernardi originated the role on stage.
Sammy Dallas Bayes was to have helmed.