Theatre for a New Audience has extended Des Moines one week, with performances now continuing through January 8. Starring two-time Tony nominee Johanna Day (Sweat, Proof) and Oscar, Golden Globe, and Tony nominee Michael Shannon (Knives Out, Long Day’s Journey into Night), the play runs Off-Broadway at the Polonsky Shakespeare Center where it officially opened December 16. Read reviews here.
In Des Moines, Iowa, five characters are brought together by chance events—including a plane crash, a rescued wedding ring, and a frightening diagnosis. Denis Johnson's dark comedy brings features karaoke, liquor, and sex as it "confronts death, mortality, and the stubborn pursuit of grace among those who barely believe in it."
Starring alongside Shannon and Day are Heather Alicia Simms (Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, A Raisin in the Sun), Arliss Howard (Mank, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone), and Hari Nef (“Daddy”, Transparent).
Director Arin Arbus helms the production and the creative team comprising scenic designer Riccardo Hernández (Jagged Little Pill), costume designer Qween Jean (Wedding Band), lighting designer Scott Zielinski, sound designer Mikaal Sulaiman (Macbeth), and choreographer Byron Easley (Slave Play).
Previews began December 10 following delays due to COVID.
Des Moines originally made its world premiere in 2007 at San Francisco’s Intersection for the Arts, following which it was further developed by Johnson until 2013. In 2015, Arbus worked with Johnson on the director's first exploration of the play via a TFANA workshop.
For tickets and more information, visit TFANA.org.
Go inside rehearsals with the gallery below.