Mare Nostrum Elements is a versatile entity that acts as a Performance Group, Training Outlet and Production Company. In its dedication to the expression of human emotion through dance, theater and movement, Mare Nostrum Elements strives to reduce the distance between artistic disciplines by exploring their points of intersection and sharing the results through performances, workshops and outreach programs. 

1. Can you tell us about your QAF funded project?

The Emerging Choreographer Series (ECS) is a participatory mentoring program providing new or aspiring choreographers with tools to create, develop and premiere a new finished work. Thanks to the partnership between LPAC and Mare Nostrum Elements (MNE) participating choreographers receive up to 60 hours of free rehearsal space, artistic feedback from established choreographers, production and logistic consultations as well as weekly meetings to exchange ideas with fellow choreographers. Participants also receive financial aid to remunerate themselves, their dancers, cover the cost of costumes, props and other production expenses. The Program culminated in 2 fully produced performances on Feb. 22 and 23, 2016 in the Little Theater at LaGuardia Performing Arts Center (LPAC) in Long Island City. Feb. 22’s performance was followed by a reception, Feb. 23’s performance was followed by a Q&A with all choreographers moderated by Alexis Convento of the Current Sessions.

2. How do you think this project will impact the community?

The ECS strives to provide emerging choreographers with a better understanding of self-producing a new work. Now in its third year the ECS has already directly or indirectly connecting participants with Festivals, venues and organizations in order to keep working and showing their craft. We are developing a network of partners and sponsors willing to invest and provide practical and financial help for the new generations of dance makers.

 3. How has QCA been helpful in the grant process?

 QCA has been extremely helpful and a valuable guidance at all stages of the grant process. QCA staff is always responsive for any sort of questions, from budget and financials issues, suggesting venues and connecting artists. These kinds of resources and knowledge are very handy and vital when preparing a grant proposal and time is ticking.

4.Here is your chance, what do you want everyone to know about your organization?

Mare Nostrum Elements (MNE) is a Woodside based Dance and Theater non-profit dedicated to developing collaborative, emotionally driven stage work blending dance, theater, music, and movement of many cultures.

Founded in 2001 by Italian performer Nicola Iervasi and American actor/director Kevin Albert the company has created original multidisciplinary works (Mediterranean Voices, Last Chance), produced Off-Broadway shows (The Crucible, Biography) and presented work by emerging choreographers. In 2013 the year of Italian Culture in the US, MNE co-produced the Italian International Dance Festival and the Italian Theater Festival In Scena, presenting 3 plays by Mario Fratti at the Secret Theater in Long Island City.

In 2002 Nicola and Kevin started gathering tools and knowledge from their training and performance careers and created The Wave Within Method to provide working performers, students, and young adults with more comprehensive performance tools. The Wave Within workshops and in- tensives have been offered at schools and festivals throughout New York and Italy. In 2010 the method was adapted for children K-12 with the name The Y oung Wave and offered in public and private schools, dance and acting schools in New York, Vermont and Italy.

The Emerging Choreographer Series is Mare Nostrum Elements latest development and was estab- lished in 2013. Last year MNE’s commitment to emerging artists through the ECS received the Artistic Excellence Recognition Award from the Queens Council on the Arts Junior Board.


Photo Credit: Gisella Sorrentino/Gaze Photography.
Queens based emerging choreographer Jacqueline Dugal and dancers in Psychopaths Welcome