Sholem Aleichem Lives On

Most people don’t know their great-grandparents.

Then again, most great-grandparents are not Sholem Aleichem.

Sandy Rothenberg is the famed Yiddish writer’s great-granddaughter. The longtime Weston resident grew up hearing his stories — and attending performances of “Fiddler on the Roof,” the musical based on his tales of Tevye the Dairyman.

She’s seen the original on Broadway, and its several revivals. Her daughter Lindsay was in the show, at Weston High School.

Sandy looks especially forward to this month’s “Fiddler” production by Staples Players. “They always do a wonderful job,” she says. (They do. The show opened last night, to rave reviews.)

Sholem Aleichem

Sholem Aleichem

Every year on his yahrzeit (anniversary of his death), Sandy and her extended family celebrate Sholem Aleichem’s ethical will — a document that passes values, blessings, life lessons, hopes and dreams, from one generation to the next. They read his stories, in a ceremony that’s grown from a small gathering to one held at the Brotherhood Synagogue in New York (with professional readers).

2016 marks the 100th anniversary of Sholem Aleichem’s death. How appropriate that a few months early, in a town next to her own, Sandy Rothenberg can watch her great-grandfather’s story live again.


(Thanks to robust ticket sales, Staples Players has added one more date for “Fiddler on the Roof.” It’s Thursday, November 19, 7 p.m., with reduced ticket prices of $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and $5 for students. The show also runs this weekend and next. For times and ticket information for all performances, click here.)

The staging, acting, choreography and sets of "Fiddler on the Roof" is spectacular -- as Staples Players shows always are. (Photo/Kerry Long)

Staples Players Riley  Andrews, Julia Mandelbaum, Jordan Goodness, Jacob Leaf and Caroline Didelot perform “The Sabbath Prayer.”(Photo/Kerry Long)

3 responses to “Sholem Aleichem Lives On

  1. Good morning, Dan! Again, I thank you for offering us another beautiful treasure that is “our town” (Westport AND Weston) — such a tapestry of wonderful elements that makes our living here so special to us. It’s history, it’s PEOPLE; it’s direction for the future of our children…you find it all and present it to us on a platter. Shalom Aleichem to YOU, my Friend…have a great day! xoxox. Susan+

  2. Sharon Paulsen

    I love these tidbits of Westport’s fabric and history when it comes to the arts, in all its forms.

  3. Elizabeth Kessler

    Dan, thank you for connecting me to a relative. I, too, am related to Sholom Aleichem (Sandy Rothenberg – let’s talk). Two of my daughters are performing in Fiddler on The Roof at Staples. From the cast, crew, direction, music, choreography, costumes and set design, the Staples Players performance is outstanding. I believe my mishpocheh, Sholom Aleichem, would be very proud of Staples Players.