About BEFF

It’s 2022, and Big Eddy Film Festival is back and better than ever. Emerging from the picturesque wilds of Sullivan County – the Big Eddy Film Festival (BEFF) is a cinematic celebration of counter-current narratives. Produced by the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, this immersive festival sparks new cultural possibilities at the juncture of film, art, and rural imagination.

Produced by Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, the Arts Council for Sullivan County, the Big Eddy Film Festival aims to advance the traditional art of storytelling by showing the newest and best independent films from around the world and our own backyard.

Each fall, the Big Eddy Film Festival, held in Narrowsburg, NY, draws filmmakers and film lovers to a picturesque Catskill Mountains setting with a unique creative upstate energy.

Big Eddy Film Festival Team

Kate Bergstrom, Festival Director (2022)

Kate Bergstrom, Big Eddy Film Festival’s new Director is a NY-based director, culture-shaper, and multidisciplinary creator working in theatre and film. As the founding director of On The Verge Festival in Santa Barbara, CA, they bring care, enthusiasm, and a passion for extraordinary storytelling into the 11th BEFF!

Kate, who is a critic in RISD’s Film, Animation, and Video department, is coming to the DVAA straight off a world premiere opera with American Opera Projects. They recently shot a film by Erin Courtney right here in Sullivan county!

For more about Kate, check out her website

Ariel Shanberg, Executive Director, DVAA

Ariel Shanberg, Delaware Valley Arts Alliance Executive Director since 2017. Ariel brings 20 years of leadership experience rooted in Upstate New York’s cultural community. As curator, Ariel organized exhibitions the Dorsky Museum and the Center for Photography at Woodstock where he was director prior to joining DVAA. 

A member of the board of directors of the Society for Photographic Education, he additionally serves on the board of directors of the Sullivan Catskills Visitors Association.

When not at work, Ariel can be found exploring the region’s art and cultural happenings with his family.

Olivia Gilliatt, Line Producer

Olivia Gilliatt is a NYC-based actor, devisor, educator and producer working in theater, film and new media. A Hudson Valley native, she has performed on stages and film sets across the New York region — and other continents.

She is the Co-Artistic Producer of Studio Tisch, a festival and space grant for alumni of NYU’s Tisch Grad Acting program. There, she facilitates community engagement by supporting ongoing education and multidisciplinary projects by 20+ artists each summer.

Cathleen Chou, BEFF Fellow

Cathleen Chou is an NYC-based filmmaker and grad student at NYU Film. Besides her love for being a producer and a grip, she is also a writer-director. Most of her films are feminine, quirky, and original, kindred to one of the central themes of BEFF — “counter-current.”

Born and raised in Taiwan, Cathleen studied sociology as an undergrad and began her career at Ogilvy in Taiwan. She is now at NYU Grad Film and has gotten two academic years of TSOA Graduate Scholarship, based on the school’s determination of merit.

Kacy Colson, DVAA Communications Manager

Kacy Colson joined DVAA in May of 2022. With a background in website design and photography, Kacy has held leading roles in the art departments of several media companies, including The Village Voice, Forbes, G/O Media, and The Daily Meal, among others.

Kacy relocated to Forestburgh, NY, with her family in 2018 and has since been freelancing for local companies and organizations such as Bethel Woods, Catskill Farms, and The Homestead School.

Signe Ballew, DVAA Grants & Gallery Manager

Signe Ballew, DVAA’s Gallery and Grants Manager, received her BFA from Alfred University in 2012, with a focus in glass and printmaking. She has worked for several non-profits along the east coast, including Peters Valley School of Craft in New Jersey.

She was a Studio Coordinator at the North Carolina Glass Center in Ashville and Operations Coordinator for the YMCA of Western North Carolina.

Signe recently relocated back to Damascus, PA, and joined DVAA in November 2021 just in time for Art in Sixes

BEFF Advisory Board

Josiah Davis
Actor, Producer

Todd Stephens
Writer, Director, Producer

Matt Strauss
Documentary Consultant, Programming Advisor

Greg Triggs
Actor, Producer

Crystal Tweed
Writer, Director, Producer

2022 Venues & Locations

Tusten Theatre

Built in 1926, the Tusten Theatre was originally the Community Hall and used as a dance and banquet facility. In the 1930s, Harvey English, a theatre chain owner from Hancock, NY, converted the dance hall into a sloped floor movie house. English ran a commercial movie operation, the Park Theater, for a number of years, it was bought out, changed hands a few times, and closed permanently in 1985. The building became the Town of Tusten’s town hall.

In the fall of 1987, the Town of Tusten and DVAA negotiated a lease to give management of the theatre portion of the building to DVAA. The space was renamed the Tusten Theatre.

Krauss Recital Hall

Krauss Recital Hall is located on the 2nd floor of the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, inside the historic Arlington Hotel.

The Arlington Hotel, built in 1894. During the 1920s, businessman George Oellrich bought the hotel for use as a general store, which later became the first Peck’s Market in the area. The building was purchased by DVAA in 1981. The Arlington Hotel was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.

Narrowsburg Union

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Cochecton Pumphouse

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108 Main

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Bethel Woods

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