Big Apple and Back: Set Designer Returns to His Roots - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Big Apple and Back: Set Designer Returns to His Roots

 By: Jason Rantala


From the Big Apple and back again, an Iowa native pursued his dreams and has now returned home. 

Tim Wisgerhof grew up in Urbandale and moved to New York to work at MTV and design window displays, but his love for theater has brought him right back to the Des Moines Playhouse. 

It was two-and-a-half decades ago that Wisgerhof started out at the Playhouse.

After mastering his skills, he went on to the "big leagues," so to speak.

About 12 years ago, he moved to New York City to work on Christmas window displays for Saks Fifth Avenue.

In New York, that he worked on MTV shows like Say What Karaoke and The Tom Green Show.

"Every bad piece of television for MTV there for awhile," said Wisgerhof.

While New York was great, Tim says it was his love of family and theatre that brought him back.

"It ended up the further I got up the ladder, the further I got away from what I really loved to do," he said.

Tim, along with the Des Moines Playhouse's team of volunteers, has spent the last three months working on the set of the new musical Legally Blonde.

"I'm a pig in mud, to use an Iowa phrase. I'm very happy being back here at the Playhouse and making giant dogs for Legally Blonde," said Wisgerhof.

While it 's not the bright lights and big city, Tim says he's just happy to be back doing what he loves.

"The joke we say here at the Playhouse is we bring the community together and we just happen to do theatre. It's a wonderful place to work, I can't believe I get to get up and do this everyday," said Wisgerhof.


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