3:29 min July 08, 2024

Farm Arts Collective in the Pocono Mountains

PTN checks out the new barn for farming and farm-based theatrical performances at Farm Arts Collective.

And a couple of years ago on Pocono Mountains Magazine, we told you about the ten-year-long performance dream on the farm happening here at Farm Arts Collective and Willow Wisp Organic Farm in Wayne County. And now the performers have their own space, a brand new barn, an agricultural center.


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"This is the most incredible day I can think of in a long time to have this new permanent space for the farm and for Farm Arts Collective. It just really elevates everything we're doing and we're giving back so much to the community to have this space. A really nice place to work for our farm team who works so hard. And then just to be able to do our activities in farming and food ecology and art," said Tannis Kowalchuk with Farm Arts Collective.

"What's important about this project is that it helps us communicate the story of farming," said her husband and Willow Wisp Organic farmer Greg Swartz. "So I'm focused literally with my gaze down towards soil, towards plants, towards spreadsheets, towards managing staff, and I don't always have the time to be communicating outwardly to the larger community about farming. This project is about that communication with our community and maybe even it will travel beyond our community. Knowing Tannis and her ability to make connections to tell the story of organic farming."

Dream on the Farm is part of a ten-year-long series of performances about climate change at Willow Wisp Organic Farm along the Delaware River. 

"It's been really, really a galvanizing experience, I think, for the community and for our actors, and we're also farmers. A lot of the people in our company are also working here at Willow Wisp Organic Farm," said Tannis in 2022.

"To have this space that is so climate controlled and so dependable, you know, like, we'll always have lights and we'll always have the right sound equipment, and it just makes the work so much more easy. And it also is more professional, like we're a professional group here now in northeast Pennsylvania. It's like it's going to become a really important venue, I think, for people who want to do whatever, you know, conferences, performances and just really looking forward to seeing what this space is going to offer to theater, to education, to farm education, all of those things," she added.

"It is that idea of a two-way street that people are eating our food, understanding the story of it and coming here and literally seeing it and having the farm interpreted through art to drive that message home and tell the full story," added Swartz.