Des McAnuff



Upcoming Victorian Opera performances

Des wrote the book for The Who's Tommy with Pete Townshend, playing February 2022.


Des McAnuff received Tony Awards for his Broadway stagings of Big River (1985) and The Who's Tommy (1993). He directed Lee Blessings's A Walk in the Woods on Broadway in 1988 and in Moscow and Lithuania in 1989-90. He is Director-in-Residence of the La Jolla Playhouse where he was Artistic Director from its 1983 revival until 1994, during which time the theatre won more than 200 awards for excellence. For the Playhouse, he directed Romeo and Juliet, A Mad World, My Masters, Big River, As You Like It, The Sea Gull, The Matchmaker, A Walk in the Woods, Two Rooms, 80 Days, Macbeth, A Funny Thing Happened on the way to the Forum, Twelfth Night, Three Sisters, Elmer Gantry, Much Ado About Nothing, The Who's Tommy and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying

McAnuff's play, Leave It to Beaver Is Dead, was produced in Toronto and NY City, here it received the SoHo Arts Award. A co-founder of the Dodgers, he directed its first production, Gimme Shelter (SoHo Arts Award), as well as Mary Stuart and How It All Began, when the theatre moved to the NYSF. McAnuff staged Henry IV, Part I for Joseph Papp in Central Park and was awarded a Rockefeller grant for his play, The Death of Von Richthofen as Witnessed From Earth, which he directed at the Public Theater (SoHo Villager Award). He has directed for the American Rep Theatre at Harvard, Yale Rep and Stratford Festival of Canada and is a former faculty member of the Juilliard School. 

McAnuff is married to actress Susan Berman and they are the proud parents of Julia Violet.