Fiddler on The Roof

Joe was interviewed on Central Television and City Talk (Liverpool) prior to the tour.

Photos (L to R)

Joe as Tevye onstage, in his dressing room (photo courtesy of Joe) and with brother Paul on press night in Nottingham

Joe toured the countryin 2008 with 'Fiddler on The Roof', playing the lead role, Tevye.

He was scheduled to appear in the full tour, which started in Nottingham on February 25th 2008. However, during one of the shows in Glasgow in August, he suffered an injury to his arm which didn't heal in time for him to rejoin the tour before it finished in Castlebar, Ireland, on October 4th 2008.


What the press said....

"Joe McGann's performance as Tevye made the show one to remember"

"Joe McGann plays Tevye brilliantly, portraying him as a philosophical, witty, caring father living through times of change."

Sunderland Journal

"Joe McGann, playing Tevye, has given the milkman a certain manner that is instantly engaging and the delivery of his many witticisms is all but perfect..... on the whole, this is as good a Tevye as anyone is likely to have seen."

The Stage Online

"Joe McGann brings to the part an actorly precision and sprightly seriousness that is both fresh and endearing. This is McGann's triumph."

Sunday Express

"Dairyman Tevye is the central character around whom the musical must stand or fall… and Joe McGann is brilliant."

"McGann captures perfectly the long-suffering Tevye's attempts to adapt with the times – delivering asides with the timing of a comedian, never overstating the deliberately sentimental songs and carrying on a running discourse with his god."

Blackpool Gazette

"McGann adds such colour to the stage that it is profoundly obvious when he is not there"

Express & Ster

"Joe McGann cuts a more realistic figure as the central character, the milkman Tevye, than the sprucer Topol in photographs of the original production. He sings and acts his way with appropriately glum wit and stoicism through the soft rebellion of his daughters which precedes the more traumatic upheavals to come"

Birmingham Post


"A Fiddler, on the Roof? It sounds crazy, no?"

These words, alongside the beautiful music that runs throughout this production, set the scene for a wonderful evening. Told through the eyes of Tevye, this is a powerful story of a man fighting to keep the old traditions alive, yet wanting to keep his children happy and accept the new ways. He can compromise to a certain extent, but everyone has their limits and Tevye reaches his when dealing with his middle daughter, Chava.

The dancing throughout is joyful and very powerful, fitting in perfectly with the story. The songs, from the well-known 'Matchmaker, Matchmaker' and 'If I were a Rich Man' through the beautiful 'Sabbath Prayer' and the haunting 'Anatevka', all took us on the journey with Tevye and his family.

This is a long production, at three hours, but is an amazing piece of musical theatre. There are no weaknesses in the cast and they performed perfectly together, but special mention has to be given, I feel, to Carrie Ellis (Golde), Tommy Sherlock (Motel) and Wendy-Lee Purdy (the Matchmaker).

And so to Joe's performance as Tevye. I was very unsure what to expect as I had never seen 'Fiddler', either on screen or on stage and it had never been a musical that held particular appeal for me. I needn't have worried. Joe took to the stage and became Tevye, the dairyman. There is an undercurrent of humour throughout this production and Joe is so good at the one-liners and the comical looks, but this was so much more. From the traditional dairyman looking after his family, to the father rebelling against the idea of his daughter wanting to marry for love he held everyone enthralled. The humour came through in 'The Dream' and when he sang 'Do You Love Me?' to Golde I think everyone was willing her to answer in the affirmative.

This show has everything and for me Joe held it all together as the pivotal player in the story. The ending, when it came, was one of hardship, but of a hope to come with a new life in a new country where Tevye and his family may one day be united again.



The following review was submitted by 12 year old Charlotte Harrisas part of her Arts Award.

On the 26th July I went to see ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ at the New Victoria Theatre in Woking. The theatre was packed and the atmosphere was thrilling, as I sat down I couldn’t wait for the show to start!

This musical is about the Jews living in Russia. They live in a small village called Anatevka and all Jews are being evacuated from their homes. The main character, Tevye, (played by Joe McGann) is the father of a family and the play is about what happens to him. He is trying to live his life by following all the old traditions but 3 of his 5 daughters want things to change.

There are several songs in the show. The one I found the most humorous was ‘Tevye’s Dream’. Tevye doesn’t know how to explain to his wife, Golde, that he is letting Tzeitel, his eldest daughter, marry the poor tailor Motel instead of the rich butcher, Lazar Wolf, as the matchmaker, Yente, had suggested. During this song Tevye pretends to have had a dream about the butcher’s dead first wife, Frumasarah returning from the grave.

The only song I didn’t like was ‘Sabbath Prayer’. I found it very slow and a bit dull, though other people may enjoy it.

I loved the whole play but my favourite part was Tevye’s conversations with God!

There were no bad parts to the play and I would recommend it to anyone. A thrilling performance!

By Charlotte Harris


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