4975 saw ‘Fiddler’ in Hastings
The Napier Operatic Society’s production of “Fiddler on the Roof” was seen by 4975 people during its Hastings season of nine performances.
The show drew a large house on Saturday night and was given an enthusiastic reception as the story of Tevye and the other Jews of the village of Anatevka in Tsarist Russia unfolded. By the end of the performance the members of the audience were clapping to the rhythm of the music.
It was a pity that for many in the dress circle the atmosphere of the opening scene was spoilt by the arrival of latecomers who were being shown to their seats mainly in the front seats – as Robert Houston in the principal role of Tevye was setting the mood for the whimsical and poignant musical.
This happens so often in Hastings that it is hard to understand why the house management does not issue instructions to ushers that latecomers are not to be admitted until the end of the scene.
People who have settled down to enjoy a concert or play deserve this consideration and those who are casual about their arrival time would learn after a while that it pays to be early.
Performers as well as the audience can be disturbed by the noise and movement of dilatory arrivals being shown to their seats, as this often means that some already seated have to stand up to let others past.
This was the only flaw in an otherwise excellent night’s entertainment.
Immediately after the show ended in the Hastings Municipal Theatre on Saturday night, 26 men including four from Wanganui where the scenery was built, dismantled the revolving stage and scenery to take it to Napier.
The men worked throughout the night and up until 7 o’clock last night in the Napier theatre where they built the stage up to 10 inches and out over the orchestral well by two feet.
At the rear of the stage they built a four foot wide bridge by 30 feet long to cover the drive unit of the revolve.
Most of the team will be back in the theatre tonight to set the lighting and adjust stage drapes.
The cast will rehearse tomorrow night and the Napier season of “Fiddler on the Roof” will begin on Wednesday – C.S.M.