Starsky star talks to Freetime about his children's book and Craig Revel Horwood

Bucks Free Press: Paul Michael Glaser Paul Michael Glaser

SPORTING a rather impressive beard Paul Michael Glaser has been recognised less frequently for his most famous role as Starsky while he has been touring the UK with Fiddler on the Roof. But London cabbies have clocked on and spoken to him about the hit American TV series.

Those days on the show are now long behind him and the actor will be treading the boards in Fiddler playing Tevye at the Wycombe Swan in January. Directed and choreographed by Strictly Come Dancing's, Craig Revel Horwood, Fiddler on the Roof has been receiving rave reviews as it tours the country.

Paul is playing the iconic role of Tevye, the local milkman in his village of Anatevka. He has always stuck by his traditions but suddenly his headstrong daughters decide that they want to marry for love rather than accept whatever Yente the Matchmaker comes up with.

Tevye loves his daughters but has to convince his wife, and the villagers, that their decisions are actually falling in with tradition. Even if it means conjuring up ghosts of dead wives and scaring his own wife to bits in order to get her to agree.

Paul, 70, said: "People love the show. They love the music. They are very appreciative of our show and the way we do what we do. It is very gratifying."

The actors in the show not only act but also play music- some of them play up to six instruments. And the music is of course an integral part of the show with If I Were a Rich Man, Matchmaker Matchmaker, Sunrise Sunset, To Life and Tradition.

He said of Tevye: "It is a great role. It is a great character. He has got so many levels to him- that is one of the things I find really fun.

"I mean I think it is just a great role because of that.

"He's an everyman. He represents so many things in all of us.

"His character can be bad, serious, funny and silly."

And although he said he does not watch Strictly or "anything like that" he said of the famous judge: "He is delightful. He is very talented and he's a lot of fun and I enjoy him a lot."

Paul is, of course, best known for playing David Starsky in the iconic Starsky and Hutch TV series for four seasons from 1975 to 1979 opposite David Soul.

He also made a brief cameo appearance in the 2004 film version of the same- with Ben Stiller playing Starsky.

He said with his beard, less people have recognised him, but funnily enough cabbies have.

He said: "Yeah, I mean I struggled with celebrity for a long time but I came to terms with it."

As well as acting Paul also writes, directs and produces motion pictures. He has directed and/or produced Band of the Hand, The Running Man, and more.

But he said he doesn't know when he will direct next as the people who decide who to give money to for films are in their 30s, and he said they don't want someone around who knows more than they do.

He added: "I would like to. I am very good at it and I really enjoy it.

"I don't know if I will have the opportunity. That is why I stared writing."

He has written a young adults' novel called Chrystallia and the Source of Light and recorded its audio version which is coming out soon along with four e-books of Chrystallia in French, German, Italian, and Spanish.

He is currently illustrating his second novel, Hook-Foot and Peg, A Cautionary Tale.

Chrystallia is set at Christmas and is about a thirteen-year-old girl called Maggie and her ten-year-old brother Jesse. Their mum is dying, the bank is about to foreclose on their home, and very soon, everything about their lives will change.

An adventure takes them underground into a world of crystals and minerals. Paul said he wrote the book for the child in all of us. He said: "The story asks an interesting question- 'What is the purpose of fear in our lives?'"

For now Paul is touring with Fiddler until May and working on his next book. He said you get to a certain point in life where you don't want to know what comes next. He said: "I move around a lot. I like to express myself creatively in as many ways as possible. It is more fun that way.

"I don't think life ever gets boring- for me, it doesn't."

Fiddler on the Roof is at the Wycombe Swan from January 29 to February 1. Tickets are £23 to £39. To book call 01494 512000 or go to www.wycombeswan.co.uk

For more leisure stories including what's on, gig listings and food reviews click here.

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