July 07 - July 10 2022

Bees at Des Moines Performing Arts (USA)

Bees is a joyful interactive work in which children are welcomed into a world of community, communication, wonder and imagination.

An outdoor Bees production photo. A Polyglot artist in an intricate black and yellow bee costume crouches on a green lawn. A small child, holding their parent's arm, looks at them intently. Other families are visible in the background, and the grassy area is surrounded by trees. Photographer: Theresa Harrison

Explore a buzzing, humming hive of activity, as three human-sized Bees busy themselves in the creation of a community alongside children who transform into bees as they play. The bees are fascinating, strange and beautiful, traversing invisible pathways and mapping delicate patterns across the performance space.

Inspired by the mysterious life and work of bees, this re-imagining of public space involves the slow uncovering of an intricate unseen world. Children are immersed in the sounds, shapes and scents of the bee world, from their familiar buzz to honeycomb houses. Bees uses ritual, non-verbal communication and the secret world of bee movement to provide a range of access points for children to participate.

Bees is presented by Des Moines Performing Arts in partnership with the parks and recreation departments of Altoona, Des Moines, Urbandale and Waukee. Polyglot Theatre is working in partnership with Inlet Dance Theatre to deliver this season.

Bees was developed through Polyglot’s Generator program, with support from the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria, and the Sidney Myer Fund.

Logos: Creative Victoria, Sidney Myer Fund, City of Yarra

Thursday, July 7
Des Moines Sculpture Park
2pm, 3:30pm, 5pm, 6:30pm

Friday, July 8
Haines Park
10am, 11:30am, 2pm, 3:30pm

Saturday, July 9
Centennial Park
10am, 11:30am, 2pm, 3:30pm

Sunday, July 10
Walker Johnston Park
10am, 11:30am, 2pm, 3:30pm

  • Bees will take place outdoors, on grass. Please check the weather and bring sunscreen, hats and water bottles.
  • All parks are wheelchair accessible.
  • Wheelchair accessible bathrooms are available at Haines Park and Walker-Johnston Park.
  • There are no bathrooms available at Des Moines Sculpture Park.


  • Children and families choose how they interact with the performers and the landscape. Some participants may prefer a gentle experience, others may be more energetic.
  • Bees will take place outdoors in daylight. There will be no bright or flashing lights.
  • Bees contains amplified sound and music that is played through portable speakers.
  • Strollers are welcome at Bees. Strollers can be parked alongside the performance space.
  • Water, infants’ bottles and breastfeeding/chestfeeding are welcome, but we do ask that there is no eating in the Bees performance space where possible.
  • You are welcome to BYO food and drinks for picnicking in the parks before or after Bees.

Free outdoor family events! 

There’s something for everyone this year in some of Des Moines’ beautiful outdoor venues and parks—and it’s all FREE!

This is an opportunity to experience family-friendly, multi-generational arts and cultural events that can be safely enjoyed together.

We can’t wait for you to join us!


Watch the trailer


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Acknowledgment of country

Polyglot acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we live and create, and we pay our respects to Elders past and present. For more than 65,000 years, children and families have created and played here, and we are grateful to make our art on this country too.