Willy's Hallucinations

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Arthur Miller’s Death of Salesman is a play meant to be performed on a stage in front of a live audience. Not only does Miller have to develop a story with dialogue, but he also has to write stage directions for actors in the play. What the actors do on stage are just as important as reciting lines properly for audiences. Directors and producers would have difficulties portraying characters and actions on stage in Miller’s Death of a Salesman because of the setting and background changes, and Willy’s hallucinations. Most of the play takes place in the house of the Lomans but there are scenes that are outside of the house. These scenes between Howard’s office, Stanley’s restaurant, and the Loman’s house can be difficult to transition between. Miller depends on changes and emphasis in light to portray the different rooms and settings his characters act in. The only physical structures Miller describes are the house and its walls. The meeting with Howard is set when the “light slowly fades on…show more content…
Miller writes in his stage directions that Uncle Ben “enters the forestage from around the right corner of the house” (30). Miller intends for Uncle Ben to be portrayed by an actor. This may confuse audiences that Uncle Ben is a real character who is capable of interacting with other characters in the “present time”. Also, in Willy’s hallucinations, time is bent and warped. So sometimes, Willy’s present day will seamlessly transition a hallucination or happen at the same time, like when he is at the restaurant with his sons: “off left, the Woman laughs” while Willy and Biff argue about Oliver’s stolen pen (90). After everyone leaves the stage, “the Woman enters, Willy follows her” (91). The present day of the restaurant flashback suddenly to Willy’s affair. This is challenging to portray, as audiences expect time to be moving forward, not
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