Death of a Salesman

Sofie Somoroff10th Grade, Bronx Science High School

Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman is a timeless story about knowing who you are and staying true to yourself. Willy Lohman, an old traveling salesman, is very concerned with others’ perception of him and the amount of money in his pockets and imposes these views on his sons. One son, Happy, goes on to lead a similar dissatisfied life while the other, Biff, once the apple of his father’s eye, turns out to be an utter disappointment in his lack of financial success. Linda, Willy’s wife, is also caught up in Willy’s self-glorifying delusions of success, constantly piling responsibilities for Willy on Biff’s shoulders.This play poses questions of who we are, what we want to be and if we think we can be happy if we get there. None of us wants to disappoint our parents, like Biff, but none of us wants to lead a dissatisfied life, like Happy. The real question is, how do we sort out our priorities and decide the eventual careers that we will pursue? Should they be the ones that will make our parents proud or the ones that give us a nice paycheck? Or maybe the ones that are a reflection of who we are as individuals are the way to go? This tragic, thought-provoking play is one that you should definitely see, but beware that you may find yourself haunted by questions like these. Of course, the words of any play are only as powerful as the way they are performed, so it’s a good thing the stars were none other than Philip Seymour Hoffman (Willy Lohman) and Andrew Garfield (Biff). Andrew Garfield, who some of us may know as Eduardo from The Social Network, is making his Broadway debut, and is absolutely flawless in doing so. It’s always interesting to see a screen actor find his way to the wonderful world of Broadway. Theatre is a much more personal experience than film in that it is a live action performance. The actor is so much more vulnerable. There is no “take 2”. It’s all on the table for the audience to do with what they please. When a screen actor can come to Broadway and perform like Andrew Garfield did, one can’t help but wonder how he could ever do anything else. TICKETS: thru$30 general rush • Barrymore Theatre, 243 W 47 St. website