West Des Moines’ only community theatre company has recently signed a lease to occupy 2019 Grand Ave. Suite 100 in West Des Moines. The new 6,500+ sq. ft. space will allow Tallgrass to have a performance space, shop and storage in a single site. The new performance space will be an adaptable “black box” theatre with a capacity of approximately 100 – 112, depending on the configuration of the stage and audience seating. This will allow Tallgrass the flexibility to expand their season to include more productions and performances and to conduct their children’s programming, Seedlings, on-site.
Created in 2003 and based in West Des Moines since 2006, Tallgrass has grown to be an increasingly viable destination for audiences and artists, both established and emerging. The new home will help Tallgrass continue to be a leader in the cultural landscape of West Des Moines by providing a stable, dedicated space recognized as a destination for artistic excellence.
“We’re very excited about this opportunity,” said Board of Directors President Tyler Klobassa. “Not only will we be able to expand our own programming, but we’ll be in a position to make our new facility available to other groups in the area, as well.”
“We also know that this won’t happen overnight,” he added. “Right now, the space is basically an empty shell. As one might expect, there were no ‘turn-key’ venues in West Des Moines for us to consider during our new home search.”
“We are also very aware of the impact COVID has had on the arts. Our goal is to be in a position where we can once again offer quality local theatre when it is safe to do so.”
Tallgrass is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, supported by ticket sales as well as private donations and grants. Tallgrass is an all-volunteer organization with the exception of a few seasonal box office workers and children’s theatre program directors. Over its history, Tallgrass has staged 49 productions, ranging from dramas and comedies to musicals and brand-new works by Iowa playwrights. These shows have involved hundreds of local artists and volunteers and have played to many thousands of theatre patrons.