September 22, 1964

Fiddler on the Roof is a musical with music by Jerry Bocklyrics by Sheldon Harnick, and book by Joseph Stein, set in the Pale of Settlement of Imperial Russia in or around 1905. It is based on Tevye and his Daughters (or Tevye the Dairyman) and other tales by Sholem Aleichem.

The story centers on Tevye, a milkman in the village of Anatevka, who attempts to maintain his Jewish religious and cultural traditions as outside influences encroach upon his family’s lives. He must cope with the strong-willed actions of his three older daughters who wish to marry for love; their choices of husbands are successively less palatable for Tevye. An edict of the tsar eventually evicts the Jews from their village.

The original Broadway production of the show, which opened, on September 22 1964, had the first musical theatre run in history to surpass 3,000 performances. Fiddler held the record for the longest-running Broadway musical for almost 10 years until Grease surpassed its run.

Sholem Aleiichem
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