Leila Alvares brings an iconic musical back to the city
Fiddler on the Roof by CAUSE Foundation returns after a gap of over a decade. A not-for-profit organisation, the Foundation promotes local talent extensively and is led by Leila Alvares, the director and producer of the play.
With a number of musicals under her belt, including Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Grease, My Fair Lady, Hello Dolly, Sound of Music, Monty Python’s Spamalot and Curtains, Alvares has been entertaining theatre lovers with a steady stream of musicals over the past 17 years.
Based partly on the Broadway production and the 1971 film of the same name, the story is a classic, focusing on Tevye, a man with five daughters and his attempts to support his family while strictly following his Jewish traditions, despite all the challenges that come his way.
“This is an exciting production as I have put it together after almost 12 years. I hope this show recreates the magic,” Alvares enthuses, explaining, “While the film is almost three hours long, I have cut it short to about an hour-and-a-half, making it easier for people with time constraints.”
Starring a host of local talents like Priya Mendens, Arvind Kasthuri, Prem Koshy, Tuffy Taraporewala, Jude Lazaro, Rahael Thomas, Alisha D’Souza and Shyju Varkey, the costumes have been done by Asha Fernandez of Elan and Trendz Boutique. “Since most of the costumes are the ones we used in the original production, they needed a lot of repairing and alterations. Both Elan and Trendz have done a great job with them,” she tells us.
Set in the Pale of Imperial Russia, the only area in the country where Jews were allowed to settle down, in 1905, the musical features lively dances and vocal performances. “There are a couple of dances one must watch out for. One is the Jewish bottle dance and the other is a lively Russian number. The dances have been choreographed by Alisha D’Souza and Lionel De Nazareth,” she informs. As always, the entire musical score of the show will be performed by a live band, which includes Denver Pinto (violin), Aashish Paul (bass), Vivek Menzel (percussion, drums), Kevin Suvedan (keyboard) and Carol Britto (piano).
With the age range of the cast extending from eight to about 55, the play promises to be a fun and engaging production. And when the cast and crew come from varying backgrounds like medicine, law, education and even students, it definitely packs in a whole lot of talent.
At Chowdaiah Memorial Hall, Malleswaram. Tickets (`300 upwards) at Supermarket (Brigade Road), Market Basket (Fraser Town) and bookmyshow.com. On August 30, 31 and September 1. A show to raise funds for a local charity has been arranged on August 28. Tickets (`200 upwards).