This L.A. Theatre Works full-cast production of Miller's classic play about the crashing of the American Dream is an especially poignant listen during the current financial crisis. As the Loman family's aspirations come crashing down, patriarch Willy battles his ego and his slow decline into old age, while his two boys continue to fail as men. But with money dwindling, they must make one last attempt to find financial stability. Stacy Keach offers up an admirable rendition of Willy, for whom listeners will easily feel empathy as he swings from mood to mood. Keach's emotional range and energy dominates what is already an impressive production in terms of acting, sound effects, and sound clarity. Jane Kaczmarek provides a winning performance as Linda Loman, battling against the dominating and condescending males within the family. This audio drama proves so enjoyable that a second listening will definitely be necessary. (Aug.)[Page ]. Copyright 2011 PWxyz LLC
Gr 9 Up--In this full-cast performance featuring Stacy Keach and Jane Kaczmarck, Arthur Miller's 1949 classic has been recorded in front of a live audience. Miller's story of Willy Loman, the iconic traveling salesman, and his ultimate unraveling while in pursuit of the American dream invokes both empathy and pity. While Willy's linear thinking serves to illustrate his incessant need for success, his loyalty and love for his family peppers the story with humanity, making it just as relevant today as it was more than 60 years ago. The performance is powerful, with the narrators playing their characters with intensity and a humorous irony. Limited, yet calculated use of sound effects adds to the effectiveness of the production. While there are other audio versions of the play, the sound quality here is far better than previously recorded versions. Add this title to high school library collections where Death of a Salesman is part of the curriculum.--Rebecca Flannery, Lyman Memorial High School, Lebanon, CT[Page 60]. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.