Death of a Salesman (Revival)

Original Director: Daniel Toyne
Revival Directors: Jeff Book & Phil Lewis
Producers: Cornelia Gröger & Gulmira Jumayeva

Director’s Note

With “Death of a Salesman”, Arthur Miller gives us great American Tragedy- the tragedy of Willy Loman, a 20th century Everyman, ultimately betrayed by his own emotional and financial investment in the American Dream and baffled by his failure to achieve it. The original title of the play was “Inside of His Head”. Through the presentation of memories, imaginings, inventions and fears, Willy is searching desperately back through his life for evidence of the moment when he took the wrong path.

FEST originally presented this play in March 2020, just as Covid was beginning to take hold.  After just three performances of a scheduled nine, the production had to be suspended.  The first shows, directed by Daniel Toyne at the time, received terrific reviews from audiences, and calls to revive the production continued to come in.  Several attempts were mounted in the last few years, and it gives me and the cast, (some of whom were part of the original cast), immense pleasure to be able to finally revive this powerful production.  My sincere appreciation goes out to the collaborative cast members, the production team and in particular our Co-Director Phil Lewis.  This production had to have its stage again, and thanks to the FEST committee for their vision and support to realize it.

-Jeff Book

Jeff Book (Co-Director, Willy Loman)
Jeff is an American actor, living in Germany for more than 25 years and working professionally in film, TV, commercials, and modeling projects. He completed his stage and film actor training in London at Rose Bruford College, Drama Studio, Actor’s Studio at Pinewood Studios, City Academy and the International School of Screen Acting. Jeff has been performing on stage with FEST since 2007, in leading roles such as the first run of Death of A Salesman, Doubt: A Parable, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Broadway Bound, Our Country’s Good and many more. He also directed FEST productions such as Hitchcock’s Dial M for Murder, Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None in 2016 and 2022 and several more.

Phil Lewis (Co-Director, Charley)
Phil studied at E15 Acting School and spent 10 years acting in various theatres in Britain, Kenya, Malta, and France before arriving in Frankfurt in 1983 to work at The English Theatre. Six months later, he had made Bad Vilbel his home. Since then, Phil has acted with both FEST, notably in Bouncers, Bedroom Farce, Charley’s Aunt and And Then There Were None, and The English Theatre Frankfurt in Tony and Tina’s Wedding, La Cage aux Folles and a couple of Tennessee Williams plays. He also directed the FEST 25th Anniversary show Still Crazy … He is spending his dotage doing a bit of acting and the odd voice-over between bouts of lying in his garden.



LINDA LOMAN, Willy’s wife – Veronika Ries
Veronika has German and British roots and grew up in the Frankfurt area. In her teens, she attended a musical school and performed in various shows and was later part of the Chaincourt Theatre Company of Frankfurt’s Goethe University. Her first appearance in a FEST production was in 1998 as Lady Guenevere in the musical Camelot. Since then, Veronika has performed in leading roles in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat and Sister’s Action. In 2011, she was cast in An Actor’s Nightmare – another FEST production, and also performed in The Philanthropist and Pastiche. In 2020, she played Linda in the original production of Death of a Salesman and is so thankful to FEST for reviving this amazing play.

BIFF LOMAN, their older son – Christopher Morahan
This is Christopher’s first production with FEST. He has previously acted with other theatre ensembles in Frankfurt, such as Shakespeare Frankfurt and the ECB Theatre Ensemble, which he has led for the last four years. Recent acting credits include As You Like It, King Lear, Macbeth and Othello, while recent directing credits include The Room and Celebration by Harold Pinter and Accidental Death of an Anarchist by Dario Fo.

HAPPY LOMAN, their younger son – Hazem Elessawy
Hazem comes from the land of the pharaohs. He discovered the world of theatre in his junior year at the American University in Cairo and has appeared in several plays since then. He was also a member of the “Khoyout” playback theatre group in Cairo for two years. Since moving to Germany, Hazem has appeared on FEST’s stage multiple times including as Mr. Pommeroy in Mike Riepl’s Dinner for Five, God in Rich Orloff’s Can This Marriage Be Saved and Fred Narracot in Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. Hazem is a full-time cinephile, book-lover and wannabe writer. And, in his free time, he “engineers” his way out of embarrassing situations. 

THE WOMAN – Ornela Giolla
Ornela was born in Albania and grew up in Greece. Since 2015, she has been living in Germany and working in the fashion industry as a Visual Merchandiser. As a film and theater enthusiast, she has always dreamt of acting one day. After attending her first FEST Workshop, Ornela fell in love with the vast world of theater and realized something that she already knew: Theater can change the world. Joining the FEST family as a member has become an important cornerstone of her acting journey. She is very excited to be part of Death of a Salesman.

CHARLEY, Willy’s neighbor – Phil Lewis

BERNARD, Charley’s son – Andreas Wilk
Having been with FEST for more than a decade, Andreas has been part of many FEST productions over time. While most of his work took place behind the scenes (lights & sound), he has also occasionally acted on stage. His last roles include playing Stan in in Neil Simon’s Broadway Bound and being part of the ensemble in Breakaway.
After a hiatus of three years, Andreas has again assumed the role of Bernard in Death of a Salesman, a childhood friend of the Loman Brothers.

UNCLE BEN, Willy’s brother – David Mark
David has been a member of FEST since 1982 and played countless roles on stage over the years – tragedy, comedy, drag and more. He was also Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Festival of European Anglophone Theatrical Societies (FEATS) in 2010 and 2017 and has been assisting a wide array of FEST productions as photographer. David is attracted to acting, because he loves telling other people’s stories.

HOWARD, Willy’s boss & STANLEY, a restaurant waiter – Tom Ryan
Originally from Dublin, Tom has been involved in numerous FEST plays.  The first such play was The Mousetrap back in 2008, when he played the role of Major Metcalf.  Other roles included Alan in Audience with Murder, Harvey in The Whole Shebang and Nick in Bedroom Farce.  He has also dabbled in writing, achieving notable success with Breakaway in 2015, a FEST original script.  After having been off the grid for too long, Tom is delighted to be back performing on stage, meeting new FEST members and renewing old acquaintances.

MISS FORSYTHE, a restaurant customer & JENNY, his secretary – Heike Why
Heike is a brand-new addition to the acting world and has taken her very first baby steps with FEST as a cast member of “Death of a Salesman”.  She is no stranger to the stage, as her early interest in art led her to ballet and various other dance genres, and to writing stories, lyrics, and poetry, which she has performed at slams and open mic nights.  Heike dreams of combining her passion for storytelling through movement with her passion for words, music, and other forms of artistic expression.  She hopes to entertain with her performance and is looking forward to growing and to learning not only the ropes in theater productions but also to discovering new sides of herself.

LETTA, her colleague – Hannah Kirkpatrick
Born in England with a Scottish-German heritage, Hannah grew up near Mainz. After performing in her school’s theatre group and band and participating in musicals such as Evita and Jesus Christ Superstar, she wanted to pursue acting as a career, but, to her own surprise, ended up changing her mind after visiting opening day at an acting school. Whilst getting to know the world as a flight attendant, Hannah began to study education and later train as a cognitive behavioural therapist. After moving to Frankfurt, she was thrilled to participate in her first FEST acting workshop 20 years after deciding not to apply for acting school. Hannah is happy to discover that it is never too late to follow one`s dreams!


Stage Manager: Elizabeth Krier
Costumes Manager: Julie Regenbogen
Props Manager: Gulmira Jumayeva
Lights & Sound: Anne Flaherty
Make up/Hairstylist: Leticia Tavares, Anastasia Levina, Aleksandra Galaganova