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Review Roundup: Death of a Salesman in the West End - Read the Reviews!
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Review Roundup: Death of a Salesman in the West End - Read the Reviews!

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Death of a Salesman opened at the Piccadilly Theatre in the West End, London. Boasting a sold out run at the Young Vic theatre, this critically acclaimed production of a??Death of a Salesman will play at Piccadilly Theatre for 10 weeks only.

Written by a??Arthur Millera??, this American classic follows an ageing, self-deluded salesman, his family and their idea of the American dream. This latest production of a??Miller'sa?? classic work reimagines the play through the eyes of an African-American family.

Let's see what the critics are saying...

Ben Brantley, New York Times: What's most surprising about Marianne Elliott and Miranda Cromwell's beautiful revival of Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman," which I mercifully caught near the end of its West End run here at the Piccadilly Theater, is how vital it is. As Willy Loman, the title character of this epochal 1949 drama, lives out his last, despondent days, what has often felt like a plodding walk to the grave in previous incarnations becomes a propulsive - and compulsively watchable - dance of death.

Anthony Walker-Cook, BroadwayWorld: Elliott continues to strike gold in reinterpreting classic works, to keep them not only fresh but also to ensure the questions they prompt continue to resonate with audiences today. It's clear the questions raised about race, the impossibility of fighting against a changing world and the validity of the American Dream today have yet to be answered. As Linda says, "attention must be paid".

Rachel Halliburton, The Arts Desk: ...this is a production that also shows the play's enduring power through its themes of over-charged parental expectations, the myths that families create for themselves, and the tragedy of watching anyone you care for slowly destroying themselves. It's a brilliant reinvention, but it remains a story for anyone struggling to better themselves: it's a letter from Truman's America to Trump's America, one that shows how while everything changes at the same time nothing changes.

Lucy Brooks, Culture Whisperer: ...the tragedy feels fully gut-wrenching. As 2019's flurry of revivals makes clear, Arthur Miller's plays are powered by society's impulse to overlook or excuse the tragedies of everyday life. This lucidly intelligent interpretation of Miller's best known show takes the overlooked everyman, to whom attention must be paid, and gives him a new face.

Nick Curtis, Go London: Marianne Elliott and Miranda Cromwell's meticulous production holds you mesmerised for over three hours, and the ending is devastating. They are not the first to depart from the idea of Willy as white and Jewish, but they are the first to imagine a black Loman family in a largely white Brooklyn milieu. This adds an edge to the setbacks and slurs they suffer, and a new dimension to the play.

Tim Bano, The Stage: But it's still an overwhelming experience. Wendell Pierce gives a remarkable performance as Willy, full of anguish and oddity, performing almost as if on fast-forward. He bolts through his delivery as if he's on a different plane from the others. Pierce finds fascinating new interpretations of the famous lines. He unearths them and exalts them. Sharon D Clarke proves yet again her status of one of the all-time greats, as pacifying matriarch Linda.

Alice Saville, TimeOut London: Despite its often-dreamy pace, these carefully observed moments mean that 'Death of a Salesman' has a real urgency to it. A nightmarish momentum that keeps you going through three-plus hours of well-thumbed disappointments.

Cristiana Ferraut, The Upcoming: The play leaves us with several points to take home and ponder further, especially on the topic of regret, family support and the meaning of help in a state of mental disorder. The acting exudes passion and an impelling desire to tell the story, with neither pity nor preaching, but just the bare exposition of a confident man and the spiral of degeneration triggered by his actions.

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