EarthX Film & Music Festival Comes to Oak Cliff Oct. 20-22

Walking on Clouds
Photo courtesy EarthX Film & Music Festival

EarthX Film & Music Festival, the only environmental film festival in Texas, will be held in three Oak Cliff venues Oct. 20-22. Each program will feature film, music and conversation. Outside adventure, conservation, activism, intersectional environmentalism and representation in the outdoors are the program themes.

Common Ground Friday Oct. 20

The festival opens Oct. 20 at the historic Texas Theater with a screening of Common Ground, the follow-up to Kiss the Ground from filmmakers Josh and Rebecca Tickell. Doors to the venue will open at 6 p.m. Guests are invited to enjoy a drink at the bar and find a seat in the theater for the program, which begins promptly at 7 p.m. The feature-length film explores the regenerative farming movement, as narrated by Rosario Dawson, Laura Dern, Jason Momoa and others. Members of the film team will join local farmers for further conversation following the film.

EarthX Film :& Music Festival comes to Oak Cliff
Photo courtesy EarthX Film & Music Festival

Common Ground fuses journalistic expose’ with deeply personal stories from those on the front lines of the food movement. The film unveils a dark web of money, power, and politics behind our broken food system. It reveals how unjust practices forged our current farm system in which farmers of all colors are literally dying to feed us. The film profiles a hopeful and uplifting movement of white, black, and indigenous farmers who are using alternative “regenerative” models of agriculture that could balance the climate, save our health, and stabilize America’s economy – before it’s too late.

Regenerative Farming

Friday’s regenerative farming theme is a perfect topic for Texas audiences. With nearly 250,000 farms and ranches (the most of any state in the U.S.) and 126 million acres of farm and ranch land (14% of the US total), agriculture is a critical part of the Texas economy. Texas agriculture is also critical to the entire country.
Filmmaker Josh Tickell will be joined by a Texas rancher and by Hugh Aljoe, the Director of Ranches, Outreach and Partnerships for the Noble Research Institute. Headquartered in Ardmore, Oklahoma, Noble’s goal is to achieve land stewardship for improved soil health in grazing animal production with lasting producer profitability. Dallas media personality Anna de Haro will moderate the discussion.

EarthX Film & Music Festival performer
Donna Missal photo courtesy EarthX Film & Music Festival

A concert by acclaimed indie artist, Donna Missal, follows, with an after-party at vegan Tex-Mex restaurant Casa del Vegano with food, drinks and DJ music.

The Heart Beats Outside: An Evening of Immersive Environmentalism Sat. Oct. 21

The second night of the festival is designed to tantalize all the senses. At the Arts Mission Oak Cliff in the heart of historic Winnetka Heights, guests will enjoy an evening of environmental film, food, music and storytelling. The evening will begin at 6 p.m. with a curated menu from Dive Coastal Cuisine presented as guests stroll the garden adjacent to the former church. Projections from Dallas-based Lightware Labs will transport guests to far-off land and waterscapes.

A thoughtful short film block and conversation follows, centered around the powerful ways in which nature communicates with us. Walking on Clouds, Soundscape, Light Beams for Helena and Tempo II: Movement in Jungle are the featured shorts. The evening will close with extraordinary music performances from the Nick Rothouse Trio and world-renowned cellist and multi-instrumentalist Ben Sollee.

Where Passion Meets Purpose Sun. Oct. 22

The closing event for the EarthX Film & Music Festival will be held at the beautiful Kessler Theater, opening for seat selection at 5:30 p.m. A series of short films that highlight stories of characters who find purpose in the outdoors and strive to share that opportunity with others starts at 6:30 p.m. Themes of conservation, food sovereignty and intersectionality will also be discussed, both on screen and in thoughtful panel conversations. Well Worn Life, The Ghost Rainforest, 4DWN, Miles to Go and The Mud on Their Hands are scheduled films.

Danielle Ponder
Photo courtesy EarthX Film & Music Festival


An intimate performance from Danielle Ponder, a rising R&B/soul singer who left her career as a New York public defender to pursue her calling in music, follows. The closing night after party will be held at The Wild Detectives, with music by DJ Elkin Pautt.

EarthX Film & Music Festival Director

Festival Director Hayley Nenadal believes the stories shared and characters developed in these films and performances will resonate with a wide range of audiences.
“Environmentalism takes so many forms, and we’ve worked to share expressions that range from urban ecology and food insecurity to climate change to the emotional reactions our planet can evoke,” said Nenadal. “We want to celebrate the diverse views and perspectives of our amazing world with all of North Texas.”

EarthX Film & Music Festival’s mission is to build an annual flagship environmental film festival in Dallas, Texas, and a year-round community that supports film, music, culture, and the outdoors. We seek to promote film and the art of storytelling in a way that entertains, informs and inspires audiences to get outside, push boundaries, and protect the environment. We are reaching beyond the choir with the environmental conversation. For tickets and additional information, please visit

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Jo Ann Holt
Jo Ann Holt is an award-winning journalist with 40+ years of experience as a writer and editor. She loves live performances, from country music concerts to Broadway musicals to community theatre productions. Holt also enjoys art and cultural festivals, and good food and wine. She’s toured Amsterdam, London, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, and various cities in Mexico but looks forward to visiting even more countries. She has traveled by boat, plane, and train, but especially likes taking long road trips across the U.S. with her husband, retired history professor Durhl Caussey. They enjoy meeting friendly people, learning about different cultures, and visiting historic sites wherever they go.