Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club

“Broadchannel” By Mia Martelli

Mia Martelli is is a Brooklyn-based dancer, choreographer, and teacher. She’s also a Dredger volunteer who has helped out down at our 19th St. site and attended many boathouse meetings and events. When she proposed a dance performance in our boathouse early in our season, we were on board! These volunteer-inspired initiatives always strike a chord with us, and Mia’s vision seemed tailor-made for our space.

In April, Mia embarked on a mini-residency, fine-tuning her site-specific performance. The culmination was a premiere held over two well-attended nights at the end of the month. It epitomized the essence of a quintessential Dredger event: an evening brimming with artistic flair, introducing new people to our organization and activities, all while providing a platform for a volunteer to showcase her talents.

Mia’s creative philosophy is as intriguing as her performances. She describes her works as a reflection of an exploration into alternative modes of creation.  Mia says “My process is archival. I pull from essays, lyrics, interviews, poetry, other dances and art pieces. I stack layers of ephemera as scaffolding for dancing through video projection, paper objects, and piled sound sources. I create a living space of marginalia as a site for dance.”

“Broadchannel” was a solo that visits childhood bedroom performance-making. The performance mixed wonderful lighting design with soundscapes, poems and projections, as a platform for contemporary questions around aging, spirituality, and environmental collapse.

Mia’s performance was supported by a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts.

Photo by Kiana Kodama
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Mia Martelli in Broadchannel, photos by N. Vergalla

Mia describes “Broadchannel” as  “improvised dances emerge in response to the rhythm, colors, and temperatures of the newly subtropical waterways of South Brooklyn and the Rockaway Peninsula. The rapture – dolphins breaching in the Gowanus Canal – and horror – six-foot-wide whirlpools flooding the same neighborhood – serve as non-fiction mythology, shaking the prospect of building a future in a place surrounded by water.”

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