While the EarthX Film Festival is the only environmental film festival in Texas, they recognize that the power of storytelling goes far beyond documentary films. In fact, for 2023, the EarthX Film & Music Festival is partnering with three of the most sought-after independent music artists in the country as a part of their Oct. 20-22 festival in Oak Cliff.
On Friday, Oct. 20, acclaimed songwriter and vocalist Donna Missal will be the featured artist. The powerful and expressive performer, with appearances everywhere from ACL to Bonnaroo to Bottle Rock, entered the music business planning to be a songwriter until a demo she recorded for her song “Keep Lying” went viral and changed her trajectory. Her work has been streamed tens of million times across platforms, and her work has been acclaimed by both Rolling Stone and Billboard. Her most recent album, titled “Revel,” explores the existential crisis she experienced after being dropped by her label. The tracks celebrate the power of claiming her authentic self and the catharsis of that process. Missal will appear at the Texas Theatre in conjunction with the screening of the acclaimed film on regenerative farming, Common Ground.
American cellist, singer-songwriter, and composer Ben Sollee has long been known for his political activism, so his appearance on Saturday, Oct. 21 is certainly on-brand. The Emmy-award winning composer blends genres ranging from folk and bluegrass to jazz and R&B seamlessly, His music incorporates banjo, guitar and mandolin along with percussion and unusual cello techniques. Texans have followed Sollee through appearances at both ACL and SXSW. Sollee gained national recognition when in 2010, he and his bandmates undertook the “Ditch the Van” tour in which they biked instruments, gear and all on a nationwide tour, a feat they reproduced in 2011 and 2012 tours. A native of Kentucky, Sollee is passionate about many environmental causes, most notably the issue of mountain top removal in coal mining. Sollee will be showcasing both his musical and production capabilities at the festival during his appearance at Arts Mission Oak Cliff, where his talents will allow guests to seamlessly transition from film to live performance as a part of a multi-sensory experience created by the EarthX Film Festival team.
The festival’s closing musical guest is powerhouse vocalist Danielle Ponder. Last year, at the age of 40, Ponder left a successful career in the public defender’s office in her hometown of Rochester, New York, to devote her life full-time to her music. The gamble paid off. Ponder’s debut album, “Some of us are Brave,” has skyrocketed the performer to national prominence, with features on CNN, NPR, Forbes and more. She has performed nationally at festivals ranging from the Newport Jazz Festival to Lollapalooza to ACL and others. Her incredible empowering message will surely resonate with guests at the Kessler on Sunday, Oct. 22. She addresses issues of personal anxiety, self-determination and social justice, which align perfectly with the curated collection of documentary shorts showcasing how individual determination is changing our planet for the better, regardless of whether those actions are working locally, nationally or internationally.
Hayley Nenadal, the festival’s director, hopes to use music to enhance the experience of festivalgoers in a way that only artistic expression can.
“Everything we do is designed to inform and inspire our audiences to get outside, push boundaries and protect the world in which we live,” said Nenadal. “We know that these empowering artists, who approach the world with hope, compassion and determination, will show North Texas what amazing things can be done when we all take small steps together.”
Individual tickets to the EarthX Film & Music Festival range from $30 - $100 and can be purchased at EarthxFilmFestival.org.
What: EarthX Film & Music Festival
When: Oct. 20-22, 2023
Where: Various locations throughout Oak Cliff
Tickets: Oct. 20, 2023
Texas Theatre, 231 Jefferson Blvd., Dallas, TX 75208
$37 - Film screening, live Q&A and concert by Donna Missal
$50 - Same as above plus admission to the after-party
Oct. 21, 2023
Arts Mission Oak Cliff, 410 S. Windomere Ave., Dallas, TX 75208
Oct. 22, 2023
The Kessler Theater, 1230 W. Davis St., Dallas, TX 75208
$30 - Floor Level Seating: Film Screenings, live Q&A and concert by Danielle Ponder
$40 - Same as above plus admission to the after-party
$50 - Balcony level seating plus admission to the after-party
$340 – Private suite including eight tickets plus admission to the after-party
Early bird pricing, which includes a 15% discount for all events, is available through Oct. 9, 2023.
About EarthX Film:
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. https://earthxfilmfestival.org/