by Daniel Thau-Eleff

Directed by Arne MacPherson

premiered in Winnipeg

May 17 – 27, 2018

Deserter is a new play by award-winning playwright Daniel Thau-Eleff, inspired by the soldiers who deserted the Iraq war and came to Canada.

Deserter follows Curtis Colby, a fictional war-deserter who is detained for using a fake passport. Colby finds himself in a tug-of-war between a holding cell in the present-day, his time in Iraq, and a small town in Manitoba, where he and his wife Jessica are desperately trying to lead a normal life.

Deserter explores moral behaviour in a complex world, raising questions about the relationship between civilians and soldiers in countries with (supposedly) volunteer armies. When should a soldier say no? What morality can we hope for in war? And what is the role of ordinary citizens?

Here is the sound from Deserter’s opening sequence, designed by Emma Hendrix:

A big thanks to everyone who came out to be a part of the world premiere of Deserter.

The development of Deserter would not have been possible without input and guidance from Joshua Key, Alexina Key, A. Al-Azraki, Chris Gerrard-Pinker, Brad Fraser, Amar Khoday, Michael Eleff, Rory Runnells and Linsea Allen.

Production and workshop photos:

Media may use these photos as long as you credit the photographer, actors and designers as per the captions. High res versions are available on request: MovingTargetTheatreCompany (at)

The premiere production was supported by:

The development of Deserter was supported by the Manitoba Arts Council, Manitoba Association of Playwrights, Winnipeg Arts CouncilRoyal Manitoba Theatre Centre, Joseph Zuken Memorial Association, and we did staged readings at Prairie Theatre Exchange‘s Carol Shields Festival of New Works (May, 2015) and MT Space‘s Impact! Festival, (Sept, 2015) supported by the Playwrights Guild of Canada and Canada Council for the Arts readings program, Manitoba Association of Playwrights and Pat the Dog Theatre Creation.