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Sycamore man playing Tevye in ‘Fiddler’

Published: Thursday, Oct. 24, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT
(Provided photo)
Bernie Schuneman of Sycamore will play Tevye in PR Productions' "Fiddler on the Roof" in November.

The Broadway award-winning hit, “Fiddler on the Roof,” will be performed at the historic Sandwich Opera House in November.

Performances will be at 7 p.m Nov. 15, 16, 22 and 23 and 2 p.m. Nov. 17 and 23. Tickets cost $15 for adults and $12 for seniors and students. 

Tickets can be purchased online at www.wewantpr.com or by calling 888-395-0797.

In the little village of Anatevka, Tevye, played by Bernie Schuneman of Sycamore, is a poor dairyman. He tries to instill in his five daughters the traditions of his tight-knit Jewish community in the face of changing social mores and the growing anti-Semitism of Czarist Russia.

Schuneman, a veteran of the local stage, has played the lead role before.

“This is one of my all-time favorite musicals,” he said in a news release. “It’s a wonderful script that actually tells a story and isn’t simply a frame from which to hang a set of songs like so many big musicals.”

Rich in historical and ethnic detail, “Fiddler on the Roof” has touched audiences around the world with its humor, warmth and honesty. The universal theme of tradition cuts across barriers of race, class, nationality and religion, leaving audiences crying tears of laughter, joy and sadness.

Though probably best known for songs such as “If I Were a Rich Man,” “Sunrise Sunset,” and “Matchmaker,” Fiddler also features dozens of other heartwarming interludes. The song “Far From the Home I Love” is featured in one of Schuneman’s favorite scenes, one that he relates to most as a real-life father. 

“In this scene, Tevye has to trust his daughter’s judgement as she is leaving him. He also has to trust her fiance’s honor and his God’s grace that things will work out alright,” he said in the release. “Tevye doesn’t understand her leaving, and has to rely on faith that it’s the right thing. Any parent who has helped a child move and then had to drive away alone has experienced many of the same feelings.”

The script has been hailed as Broadway’s very best. The original Broadway production of the show was nominated for 10 Tony Awards, winning nine, including best musical, score, book, direction and choreography. It spawned four Broadway revivals, a successful film adaptation, and the show has enjoyed enduring international popularity.

“The music is familiar and accessible,” Schuneman said in the release. “I think our audiences will walk away smiling and humming one of several different tunes.” 

For more information on the PR Productions presentation of Fiddler on the Roof, visit www.wewantpr.com or search for PR Productions on Facebook. 

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