Multimedia: Wendell Pierce and Tony, Grammy and Emmy Award® Winner André De Shields Discuss DEATH OF A SALESMAN at BroadwayCon First Look; Previews Begin September 19

Photography, Theater

Death of a Salesman stars Wendell Pierce and Tony, Grammy and Emmy Award® winner André De Shields were part of BroadwayCon’s First Look programming in the Grand Ballroom of The Manhattan Center in New York on July 8, 2022. The pair, who play brothers Willy and Ben Loman in the highly anticipated Broadway revival of Death of A Salesman, chatted with Master of Ceremonies Jared Grimes about the show.

Wendell Pierce, André De Shields and Jared Grimes. Photo by Lia Chang

Following its critically acclaimed run at London’s Young Vic Theatre and on the West End, this vibrant and timely production is told – for the first time on Broadway – from the perspective of an African American family, living and working in a White, Capitalist world.

Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman is directed by Miranda Cromwell, who co-directed the London production alongside Marianne Elliott. Together, they won the 2020 Olivier Award for Best Direction.

2022 Tony Award® nominee Sharon D Clarke, who garnered an Olivier Award for her turn as Linda Loman, will reprise her role in the Broadway production, which kicks off  the limited 17-week engagement on Monday, September 19 at the Hudson Theatre (141 West 44th Street). Opening night is set for Sunday, October 9. Click here for tickets.

After the conversation, Wendell and André met up with the company of A Strange Loop backstage.

DEATH OF A SALESMAN meets A STRANGE LOOP – Erin Gioia Albrecht, Charlie Rosen, Cherie B. Tay, André De Shields, John-Andrew Morrison, L Morgan Lee, Wendell Pierce, Jason Veasey, Jon-Michael Reese, Mars Rucker, Vicki Whooper. Photo by Lia Chang

Watch their conversation and check out the photos below.

The Death of a Salesman cast also features Khris Davis as Biff, McKinley Belcher III as Happy, Blake DeLong as Howard/Stanley, Lynn Hawley as The Woman/Jenny, Grace Porter as Letta/Jazz Singer, Kevin Ramessar as Musician, Stephen Stocking as Bernard, Chelsea Lee Williams as Miss Forsythe, and “The Wire”‘s Delaney Williams as Charley, Willy’s neighbor and only friend.

The creative team includes Olivier Award winner and Tony Award® nominee Anna Fleischle (scenic and co-costume design), Sarita Fellows (co-costume design), Tony Award® nominee Jen Schriever (lighting design), Tony Award® nominee Mikaal Sulaiman (sound design), Femi Temowo (composer), Drama Desk Award nominee Nikiya Mathis (hair design), Erica A. Hart & Daniel Swee (casting) and John Miller (music coordinator).

Few works of drama loom as large in the national psyche as Miller’s seminal Death of a Salesman. It caused a critical sensation when it premiered on Broadway in 1949 with a production directed by Elia Kazan. It went on to win six Tony Awards® including Best Play and was also honored with the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play. The play has enjoyed four previous Broadway revivals, three of which won the Tony Award® for Best Revival of a Play.

André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce and André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce, André De Shields and Jared Grimes. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce, André De Shields and Jared Grimes. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields and Jared Grimes. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce, André De Shields and Jared Grimes. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce, André De Shields and Jared Grimes. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell PIerce. Photo by Lia Chang

André De Shields and Wendell Pierce. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce and John-Andrew Morrison. Photo by Lia Chang

Wendell Pierce, Olivier Award winner and 2022 Tony Award® nominee Sharon D Clarke, Tony, Grammy and Emmy Award® winner André De Shields, Khris Davis, McKinley Belcher III, Blake DeLong, Lynn Hawley, Grace Porter, Kevin Ramessar, Stephen Stocking, Chelsea Lee Williams, and Delaney Williams Set for the Broadway Production DEATH OF A SALESMAN; Opening Night is October 9

Lia Chang

LIA CHANG is a Chinese-American actor, a multi-media content producer, an award-winning filmmaker, and a photo activist and documentarian, who lifts up and amplifies BIPOC communities and artists and the institutions that support them.

Lia moved to New York from her home in San Francisco when she was 17 years of age and made her stage debut as Liat in a national tour of South Pacific with Barbara Eden and Robert Goulet. She spent many years working extensively Off-Broadway, including Signature Theatre’s revival of Sam Shepard’s Chicago. Her film work includes Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, and The Last Dragon. The decades of being viewed by others through the narrow lens of “Asian actor” in the industry brought Lia to a turning point, and she picked up her camera, determined to create awareness by documenting the work and the lives of her BIPOC colleagues, resulting in the creation of thousands of photographs and pieces of video. Her photo archives are housed in the AAPI collection in the Library of Congress’ Asian Reading Room under “Lia Chang Theater Portfolio collection,1989-2011” and in the “Lia Chang Photography Collection” in The Billy Rose Theatre Division of the New York Public Library.

Lia’s awards include the 2000 OCA Chinese American Journalist Award, the 2001 AAJA National Award for New Media and the 2022 Prospect Muse Award. She is also an AAJA Executive Leadership Graduate, a Western Knight Fellow at USC’s Annenberg College of Communications for Specialized Journalism on Entertainment Journalism in the Digital Age, a National Press Photographers Association Visual Edge/Visual Journalism Fellow at the Poynter Institute for New Media, and a Scripps Howard New Media Fellow at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

More recently, Lia co-founded Bev’s Girl Films, which makes films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. She executive produced and starred in the indie films Hide and Seek (AA Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Best Actress Nomination), Rom-Com Gone Wrong, and When the World Was Young (2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative).

A retrospective of Lia’s photographs will be on view at the Museum of the City of New York later this year, documenting her BIPOC colleagues and contemporaries in the performing arts. www.liachang.com, www.liachangphotography.com

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