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'Fiddler' is coming to town

A lawyer who closely identifies with the main role plays Tevye.

By JON WILSON

© St. Petersburg Times, published April 18, 2001


ST. PETERSBURG -- Veteran lawyer Michael Schwartzberg is back in his favorite outside-the-courtroom role.

For perhaps the seventh time, Schwartzberg will play Tevye, the lead character in Fiddler on the Roof, when the play opens Thursday at the St. Petersburg Little Theatre.

"I live that role," said Schwartzberg, 43. "I try to live my life like Tevye. I'm a criminal defense attorney and I probably find myself at least once a day saying something that Tevye does.

"I might lose a trial, but no matter how much adversity you face, you've got to keep smiling. That's the predominant attitude of Tevye."

Fiddler on the Roof plays at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, with a Sunday matinee at 2 p.m. It also plays at 8 p.m. April 26-28 and at 2 p.m. April 29. Tickets are $16, or $8 for students. The St. Petersburg Little Theatre is at 4025 31st St. S. Call 866-1973 for reservations.

Fiddler, considered a classic show, focuses on a Jewish dairyman in Czarist Russia whose bucolic life is complicated when his daughters begin contemplating marriage. It is an uplifting tale, although it deals with people in emotional crisis.

Jorge Acosta is directing the production. Lorna Thompson plays Tevye's wife, Golda, who would like her daughters to marry wealth, while Tevye prefers intellectual men for them.Meggin C. Stailey, Caroline Brasfield and Amy E. Gray portray the daughters. Dawn McClurg plays Yenta.

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