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‘Fiddler’ tour tosses tradition: Male actor from Miami plays the butcher’s dead wife, Fruma Sarah

BY STEVE ROTHAUS, srothaus@MiamiHerald.com

SeanPatrickDoyle Un-traditional casting: Miami Springs native Sean Patrick Doyle plays the role of Fruma Sarah -- the butcher's dead wife -- in the national revival of Fiddler on the Roof running Tuesday through Oct. 18 at Broward Center for the Performing Arts.

A man has never played a woman's part in any major production of Fiddler, according to Doyle, a 2001 musical theater grad of Miami's New World School of the Arts.

"Motel [the tailor], that was the part my agent submitted me for. But they said I was too young. I have a baby face," explains Doyle, age 26. "Now I'm playing a dead woman -- who is much older."

In touring companies of Fame and West Side Story, Doyle has traveled the world, having visited 17 nations including Germany, Italy and The Netherlands, as well as an extensive tour of Asia.

“The gypsy life suits me,” said Doyle, whose boyfriend, David Kaley, is an assistant costume designer working on the upcoming Broadway production of The Addams Family starring Nathan Lane.

“Every layoff, I spend with him,” Doyle says. “Our relationship has been sustained through iChat. We both have Macs and they've save us.”

FrumaSarah-3Doyle, who also dances as a townsman in Fiddler, says getting cast as Fruma Sarah was ``kind of a fluke," after production staff heard him sing in a high voice outside a rehearsal hall.

"I'm a soprano, and I'm also a jokester," Doyle said. "The music director said, `How about if we ask him to sing as Fruma Sarah?' ''

Doyle sang 16 bars as the butcher's wife, who haunts Tevye the Milkman (played on this tour by Topol) in a scene-stealing dream sequence. "I thought, `I'm never going to get that, it's so crazy.' Then two weeks later, I had the offer."

The only down side to wearing multiple layers of clothing, a wig and thick green makeup, according to Doyle:

"I've only been recognized twice at the stage door in the past eight months."

Caption: Sean Patrick Doyle as Fruma Sarah by Joan Marcus

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hi i play "fruma" in the israeli version of the musical:) my name is " nisso shalev " !

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