About the Grant

$15,000 to support Of Farms and Fables (MAP 2011), a community-based theater project led by Jennie Hahn and Cory Tamler.

About the Project

In the summer of 2010, four theatre artists went to work on three Maine farms. For twelve weeks, the artists assisted with daily farm operations and conducted weekly story circles and interviews with farm employees. The result of this exchange is an original play written by Cory Tamler and directed by Jennie Hahn, which will premiere in October 2011. With a cast of professional actors and community farmers, Of Farms and Fables will engage performers and the audience in dialogue about the past, present, and future of agriculture in Maine.

Agriculture is a hot topic. As with any debate of relevance and scope, people with multifaceted lives can be veiled by intellectualism, polarity, generalization, and assumption. The farmers participating in this project are very diverse: Some are fifth-generation farmers; others have been farming for ten years. Some are dedicated to environmental sustainability; others value economic solvency and a system that keeps food costs down for Americans. All of them are passionate, active citizens with a breadth of wisdom to offer a broader community. Among this group there is room for conflict. There is also hope for the development of a more nuanced understanding between and among farmers and consumers. Among other goals, this project attempts strip some of the rhetoric from a complex global conversation to focus on the people behind it.

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