Tevye is a man who wants to hold on to tradition. He says in the opening of Fiddler on the Roof, “Traditions, traditions. Without our traditions our lives would be as shaky as, as… as a fiddler on the roof! “
“A fiddler on the roof. Sounds crazy, no? But here, in our little village of Anatevka, you might say every one of us is a fiddler on the roof trying to scratch out a pleasant, simple tune without breaking his neck. It isn’t easy. You may ask ‘Why do we stay up there if it’s so dangerous?’ Well, we stay because Anatevka is our home. And how do we keep our balance? That I can tell you in one word: tradition!”
In Anatevka where he lives, marriages are arranged by parents with the help of a matchmaker. But when it involves his daughter’s life, he just had to break tradition. For how could he force his daughter to marry a rich widower when he can see in her eyes how much she loves her childhood sweetheart.
I’ve known since I was little that the song Sunrise, Sunset has been associated with weddings. I’ve even watched Philippine actor Boyet de Leon walk Lotlot down the aisle to meet her groom Monching, while this music plays in the background. It’s nice to finally hear the original version of the song in this movie. Here’s Tzeitel, Tevye’s oldest daughter, marrying Motel, the tailor.