California: The Tempest – Fowler
California: The Tempest
Fowler, Fresno County
Fowler is just about 15 minutes south of the city of Fresno, but it feels farther because it’s such a classic small town. It’s bordered on all sides by fields of peaches, oranges, nectarines, almonds and mostly grapes because raisins are a major crop here. Fowler has many distinct church communities that periodically come together: Buddhist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Catholic, Armenian Catholic, Methodist, Sikh, etc. The population is ethnically diverse too, though there are so few places to rent in town that new residents are rare. The people of Fowler fundraised to build their local library rather than depend on the county to make it happen. There is a dear couple who run a food bank for their neighbors out of their garage. There’s a strong presence of families here dating back to pre-WW2. It’s a town that celebrates its history, through community clubs, events and parades.
Performances: March 5, 6 & 7, 2015,
outside at Panzak Park
Merced St. and 3rd St.
Fowler, CA 93625 (View Map)
7:00pm Curtain. Plenty of parking.
Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can (Suggested donation $10)
Bring non-perishable items for community food drive!
Call to reserve your seats: 1-800-578-1335
Buddhist Church of Fowler
Fowler Branch Library
Cornerstone’s first project with the community of Fowler was in 2011. We first learned about Fowler from a woman who came to participate in a couple of our workshops in Los Angeles. Nikiko is both a farmer and a performing artist and she sees the intersection of art and community as essential. In one of the workshops she described the area where she lives with such complicated love and imagery that we were lured to experience it firsthand. There are many interesting and wonderful people in Fowler. One important group of people is the Buddhist Church of Fowler who were very tentative with us for a long time, and yet made room for us in their community in a way that was very significant to the success of our residency. The mayor was a great help too and he became a character in the play, though the mayor was too busy (running his auto shop and the city) to join in onstage.
A Man Comes to Fowler was written by Julie Marie Myatt and directed by Laurie Woolery. The cast of 35 including 28 community members plus 8 local people who helped out backstage and as ushers. The play which told a variety of stories about the history and character of the town, was performed outdoors in Panzak Park where approximately 760 people attended.