Friday, December 4, 2020

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Posted December 02, 2020in Center Stage

The local performing arts scene finding pandemic niches

Creatives often have to embrace patience. This contradicts their strong “take charge” mindset during the creative process. The patience side of performing artists’ yin-yang is currently being tested. They thrive in the live performance environment. They feed off of audience response, while elevating their performances from that stimulation. Many performers,

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Posted November 04, 2020in Center Stage

Is that a glimmer of stage lights we see at the end of this dark cultural tunnel?

Two-hundred-and-nine days. That is how long it has been since the Des Moines Community Playhouse has presented live theater in its mainstage performing hall. It was the last of the local producers to do so. While they created an outdoors experiment with their drive-in theater in the parking lot, theater,

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Posted September 30, 2020in Center Stage

Dark, virtual, or real space

When last we left this fluid situation, the central Iowa theater scene reflected the national and international trends and responses in their art. Each company, with its own unique circumstances, was in seclusion to determine what could be done and when. From Des Moines Performing Arts, a dynamic performing arts

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Posted September 02, 2020in Center Stage

Theaters find ways to connect

The local theater scene continues to evaluate and evolve, balancing the necessity of safety with the call of the muse to produce performances. Without our traditional focal points in performance arts, the initial shock of what the pandemic has done to life’s routines has been replaced with finding new directions

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Posted August 05, 2020in Center Stage

Cloris Awards

There has never been anything like the current pandemic’s influence on the live performing arts. Local and regional disasters have stopped theater before, but nothing has had such an insidious and pervasive impact in bringing this multi-billion dollar creative industry to a screeching halt. This pandemic has affected the youngest

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Posted July 01, 2020in Center Stage

Adapting to deliver to theatrical audiences

The COVID-19 pandemic changed all aspects of our lives as it insidiously swept into every corner the world. The world of live performing arts was immediately plunged into a foggy realm of uncertainty. Shows were canceled, then seasons. Audience participation evaporated. This was a catastrophic blow to live theater. Central

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Posted June 08, 2020in Center Stage

Peeking behind a new curtain

When last we convened, I shared observations from leaders in our theater community. The world of live performing arts was immediately plunged into a foggy realm of uncertainty. Shows were cancelled, then seasons. Audience participation evaporated. The Des Moines Playhouse (Playhouse) was forced to furlough, then lay off, almost its

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Posted April 01, 2020in Center Stage

All the world’s a stage?

This month’s column was going to cover the opening of three metro stage shows — “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” (DMYAT); “Pippi Longstocking” (DMP-Kate Goldman); and “That Golden Girl Show” (DMPA-Temple). COVID-19 changed those plans, along with the plans of countless businesses, cultural events and personal lives. David

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Posted March 04, 2020in Center Stage

Music and comedy await audiences

Playwright David Lindsay-Abaire dips his pen into his wickedly witty ink for “Wonder of the World.” The beauty of living in a land of rugged winters is finding the indoor options that beckon to sweep us into compelling stories, rollicking comedies or even interactive experiences. February is filled with plenty

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Posted February 05, 2020in Center Stage

Beat the winter blahs

With a show… or two…or more. The beauty of living in a land of rugged winters is finding the indoor options that beckon to sweep us into compelling stories, rollicking comedies or even interactive experiences. February is filled with plenty of options, from national touring productions on the Civic Center

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