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Spotlights

Stefano Takes the StageOne Final Time as Tevye

Stefano Takes the Stage One Final Time as Tevye


John Stefano has been a professor and chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance since 1992. Soon, he will close the 2015-16 season and his time at Otterbein by taking the stage in the iconic role of Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof.

“Fiddler on the Roof is one of the best musicals ever written, and the story is universal — human beings torn between tradition, the rock of survival for threatened peoples, and love, the force that binds couples together. The chance to do this show and to play this iconic role with my beloved students and colleagues, is a precious gift,” Stefano said.

Winner of nine Tony Awards when it debuted in 1964, Fiddler on the Roof has been touching audiences worldwide with its humor, warmth and honesty and has become a staple of the musical theatre canon. Set in the little village of Anatevka, the story centers on Tevye, a poor dairyman, and his five daughters. With the help of a colorful and tight-knit Jewish community, Tevye tries to protect his daughters and instill them with traditional values in the face of changing social mores and the growing anti-Semitism of Czarist Russia. Rich in historical and ethnic detail, Fiddler on the Roof’s universal theme of tradition cuts across barriers of race, class, nationality and religion, leaving audiences crying tears of laughter, sadness and joy.

Before joining the Otterbein faculty, Stefano began teaching at Southern Methodist University in 1975 and continued his academic career at Emporia State University in Kansas and Illinois State University, where he was department chair and managing director of the Illinois Shakespeare Festival. He has been active in the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival and was awarded the KC-ACTF Gold Medallion Award of Excellence in 1998.

He has directed more than 40 productions, 23 of them at Otterbein, including the musicals Carnival, Big River, Baby, Sweet Charity, West Side Story, Oklahoma!, Kiss Me Kate, Peter Pan and Smokey Joe’s Café.

Although he is looking forward to retirement, Otterbein will always hold a special place in Stefano’s heart.

“What other college’s alma mater is a love song? Otterbein has given me and my colleagues the chance to build a place based on mutual respect, professionalism, laughter and joy, where we care for each other, we care for ourselves, we care for our audiences, we care for our art form, we care about what’s happening in the world, and we work very hard to create exceptional pieces of theatre which our audiences love. Where else but Otterbein could that have happened?”

Tickets for Fiddler on the Roof are $25 each and can be reserved by calling the Otterbein University box office at (614) 823-1109 or purchased online at www.otterbein.edu/drama. The box office is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The box office is located in Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St.


PERFORMANCE INFORMATION

Thursday, April 7*, 7:30 p.m.   Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville
*Opening night, reception to follow performance

Friday, April 8, 8 p.m., Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville

Saturday, April 9, 8 p.m., Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville

Sunday, April 10, 2 p.m., Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville

Thursday, April 14, 8 p.m., Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville

Friday, April 15, 8 p.m., Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville

Saturday, April 16, 8 p.m., Fritsche Theatre at Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville


PRODUCTION TEAM

Director: Lenny Leibowitz

Music Director: Lori Kay Harvey

Choreographer: Stella Kane

Scenic Designer: Rob  Johnson

Costume Designer: Julia Ferreri

Lighting Designer: T.J. Gerckens

Sound Designer: Arri Allen

Stage Manager: Tara Smith

PRINCIPAL CAST LIST

Tevye, the Dairyman................................................................ Dr. John Stefano

Golde, his wife................................................................................ Aubree Tally

Tzeitel, his daughter........................................................................ Lauren Kent

Hodel, his daughter................................................................... Natalie Szczerba

Chava, his daughter........................................................................ Abigail Isom

Yente, the Matchmaker............................................................... Dana Cullinane

Motel, the Tailor............................................................................. Connor Cook

Perchik, the Student.................................................................... Connor Allston

Lazar Wolf, the Butcher............................................................. Jack Labrecque