Every time the Peninsula Association of Performing Artists puts on a show, our newsroom is flooded with letters to the editor praising PAPA’s quality – with good reason.
Last weekend, I caught PAPA’s production of “Fiddler on the Roof,” and the show was charming, pleasing and thought-provoking.
David Immel brought Tevye to life with humor and nuance, commanding the stage. Carly Keone, Brooke Flood-Brown and Indigo Kerr-Harding, playing sisters Tzietel, Hodel and Chava, showed off their acting chops with aplomb – and when the dance-heavy numbers came up, they hit the stage like a whirlwind.
I was in a production of “Fiddler” in high school, and the show brought back old memories and delighted with new takes on familiar numbers. The song and dance between Russian soldiers and Jewish men in “To Life” was full of revelry. The dramatic lighting and staging of “Tevye’s Dream” was smart and effective, moving from ordinary white spotlight to colored lights, flashes and fun ghostly costumes.
The show is housed in the theater in Fort Columbia State Park in Chinook, Washington. It was my first time in the park, and my friends and I explored a short trail during the 20-minute intermission.
Though “Fiddler” focuses on a Jewish community in a small village in 1905 Imperial Russia, the story easily resonates with modern audiences. It addresses the age-old clash of generations: parents’ traditions butting heads with youth’s modern ideas.
Arranged marriage vs. marrying for love is an easy one to recognize in the show, but “Fiddler” also touches classism, education, tolerance, and (something we’re all familiar with) new technologies.
It also addresses isolationism vs. recognizing your involvement in current events, something that speaks to an increasingly globalized world.
Aug. 8 to 10 is closing weekend, so you still have time to see the show yourself.