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“DIRT: The Secret Life of Soil” with Arm-of-the-Sea Theater

October 8, 2022 @ 2:00 pm 3:00 pm EDT

Join us for a theatrical production about the dirt under our feet by Arm-of-the-Sea Theater, an arts ensemble that fuses visual storytelling with live music in contemporary works of mask and puppet theater. 

This production will take place outdoors in Freedom Square, a two-minute walk from the Sanctuary.

Where does food “come from” and from what is it made? Here’s a lively primer for urban bumpkins and upcountry gardeners alike. Fusing cutting-edge science and age-old puppetry, DIRT takes audiences on an extravagant journey of discovery into the Great Underneath—revealing the epic alchemy of plants, the fungi’s dance of mutual delight, and the microbes’ herculean labors. Fifty minutes in length, performed by a five- member company, and featuring live music and a myriad of puppet figures ranging from 12 inches to 12 feet tall, the show reminds earthly residents of all ages how profoundly essential the ground beneath their feet is.

Large blue statue with an actor holding a globe on a stick and gesturing to it. The statue has two large hands lifted in the air and a face carved into it.
More statues and actors of the production, wearing costumes meant to represent soil and leaves/

Arm-of-the-Sea Theater’s mission is to inspire wonder, offer insight, spark joy and enrich the public imagination. They accomplish their mission through the symbolic visual language of mask and puppet theater. This handmade, low-tech form of communication is decentralized and locally adapted. It can bridge language barriers and engage people of many ages and walks of life. 


Arm-of-the-Sea was founded in 1982 by Marlena Marallo and Patrick Wadden as an experimental hybrid performance group combining art, ecology and social action. They continue to experiment with this ephemeral art form as a symbolic visual language that can illuminate the links between human communities and the life-support processes of this blue ocean planet.  

Photos by Robert Cooper from the performance at Freedom Square on October 8, 2022
Action shot of the play.
Another image of the statue from above, this time outside.
Action shot of the play.
Action shot of the play.
Musician plays guitar and sings to aid in the play's message.
Action shot of the play.

Sponsored by NATURE Lab and People’s Health Sanctuary.

9 101st St
Troy, NY 12181 United States

We are committed to lowering the barriers to access for events at The Sanctuary for Independent Media. For people who are hard of hearing or deaf, blind or low-vision, or whose physical limitations can interfere with a satisfying experience, let us know two weeks in advance so we can make appropriate arrangements.

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About The Sanctuary

We use art and participatory action to promote social and environmental justice and freedom of creative expression.

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