Today is July 23, 2024 ()

New B’nai Sholom Course Looks at “The Tevye Stories: Fact in Fiction”

A new course taught by Rabbi Don Cashman at B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation will look at the stories of Tevye the dairyman and the degree to which they did or did not reflect the realities of Jewish life in czarist Russia.

“The Tevye Stories: Fact in Fiction” will be offered Mondays from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. beginning February 27 at the synagogue, 420 Whitehall Road, Albany, New York.

According to Cashman, “We’ve all seen ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ and know all the lyrics, and we know the book is always better than the movie.  Or is it?  The underlying short stories give us much more historical detail than Broadway gave us.  The Jewish character of the stories, too, is much more pronounced, as one would expect from literature written in Yiddish.”

Participants will read two stories per week from Sholem Aleichem’s Tevye the Dairyman and some of the Railroad Stories as a basis for delving into events and Jewish life in czarist Russia.  The course also will examine how Broadway and Hollywood handled certain points.  

Registration for this six-class course and purchase of the book are required.  Cost of the course is $45; for B’nai Sholom members, it is just $30.  Participants may obtain the book, Hillel Halkin’s translation of Tevye the Dairyman and The Railroad Stories (Schocken), through the synagogue for $17 or on their own.  Deadline to purchase the book through B’nai Sholom is February 17 to ensure that it arrives by the start.

For more information or to register for this course, contact the B’nai Sholom office at 518-482-5283 or e-mail

Founded in 1971, B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation in Albany is a home for contemporary Reform Judaism in the Capital Region, creating a vibrant Jewish present that links ancient traditions with the promise of the future.  Nearly 130 diverse households from eight counties seek religious, educational and social fulfillment at B’nai Sholom.  For information about B’nai Sholom and the benefits of belonging, visit  or contact the B’nai Sholom office at 518-482-5283 or

Contact Us

420 Whitehall Road, Albany, NY 12208
518-482-5283|Email Us

Office Hours

Tuesday through Friday 9:30 am - 4:30 pm
Closed Mondays

Stay Connected