Death of a Salesman

No, this isn’t a cute post title. This is a post that will have no meaning except for people within driving distance of Mountain View or Berkeley and who like good contemporary drama.

We saw the Traveling Jewish Theatre production of Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman on Sunday at Mountain View’s Center for the Performing Arts, where it will be playing through May 20. After that, it moves to Berkeley’s Julia Morgan Center for the Arts, May 25-June 10. (The production began at San Francisco’s Theater Artaud, April 5-29).

Here, it was presented at the Second Stage–the smaller venue with an open “stage” area with bleacher-style seating on three sides (that is, rows with a rapid vertical rise and individual chairs rather than fixed seating), meaning no bad sitelines and an intimate space overall.

It’s a first-rate production. I’m not much of a theater-goer, although that may be changing, but this was profoundly satisfying. If you’re in the vicinity, you might give it a try. Here, at least, the tickets were reasonable (for live performances)–we paid $34 a ticket, with open seating.

We’re not the only ones who thought this was well done. The San Francisco Chronicle gave it a good review when it was at Theater Artaud. (For those not familiar with the Chron‘s trademarked little man, this play got the second best of five possible ratings, which is a strongly positive rating.)

If you’re nearby but not familiar with downtown Mountain View and the Center for the Performing Arts–well, the center is a linchpin of the hugely successful revival of downtown (specifically Castro Street); the library’s a couple of doors away, and that section of Castro has a range of fairly new and interesting restaurants.

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