Action at a Distance + Petra Zanki

Action at a Distance + Petra Zanki

Velocity is very excited to announce that we will be hosting a residency to support the new collaboration between two artists who are taking Northwest dance in daring new directions. Vancouver-based Action at a Distance Dance Society (Vanessa Goodman) and Seattle’s own Petra Zanki will team up with their long-time collaborators in all things sonic, Benoît Pioulard and LOSCIL to create an immersive experience blending the boundaries between dance and sound.

This residency comes out a mutual desire to support and build relationships between the Seattle music/dance community and the Vancouver music/dance community. Geographically, these cities are each other’s closest dance community here on the west coast. Seattle and Vancouver are often referred to as sister cities, and yet an exchange between them has been all too rare considering our geographical proximity. The goal of this project is to cross those  national borders and barriers, and kick off what we hope will be a long-lasting series of creative dialogues between artists in these two cities.

about the artists


about the artist

Vanessa Goodman image

Vanessa Goodman

VANESSA GOODMAN is the Artistic Director of the performance company Action at a Distance Dance Society.The company would like to respectfully acknowledge that it is working on the ancestral and unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh people. 

The priority of the company is to foster work that reflects the human condition, using dance to decode contemporary experience. It is the company’s goal to create immersive environments, working towards facilitating an engrossing experience for those who witness the work. Goodman was the recipient of the 2013 Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award, the 2017 Yulanda M. Faris Program and the 2019 Dance Chrystal Prize. She has been commissioned to create works for the Dancing on the Edge Festival, The Gwaii Trust, Vancouver Biennale and Simon Fraser University. Most recently her work has toured nationally and internationally and been presented by DanceHouse, SFUW, The Canada Dance Festival, The Dance Made in/ Fait au Canada Festival, Offset Dance Festival, Fluid Festival, The Bienal Internacional de Dança Do Ceará, On the Boards, The Risk/Reward Festival, The Dance Centre, The Shadbolt Centre for the Arts, Small Stage, Push Off, Music on Main and The Chutzpah! Festival.  


Vanessa Goodman respectfully acknowledges that she lives and works on the ancestral and unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh nations. She holds a BFA from Simon Fraser University and is the artistic director of Action at a Distance Dance Society. Vanessa is attracted to art that has a weight and meaning beyond the purely aesthetic and uses her choreography as an opportunity to explore the human condition. She has received several awards and honours, including: The Iris Garland Emerging Choreographer Award (2013); The Yulanda M. Faris Scholarship (2017/18); The Chrystal Dance Prize (2019); The Schultz Endowment from Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity (2019); and the “Space to Fail” program (2019/20) in New Zealand, Australia and Vancouver.

Vanessa’s work has been presented in Vancouver by DanceHouse, SFU Woodwards, The Belkin Gallery, The Firehall Arts Centre, The Dance Centre, The Chutzpah! Festival and The Shadbolt Centre for the Arts. Presentations further afield include the Fluid Festival (Calgary), Kinetic Studio (Halifax), The Dance Made in Canada Festival (Toronto), On the Boards, Risk/Reward Festival, Offset Dance Fest and The Bienal Internacional de Dança Do Ceará (Brazil).

Vanessa has been artist-in-residence at The Dance Centre, Dance Victoria, Harbourfront Centre, The Shadbolt Centre and The Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, where she was also on faculty. Commissions include Springboard Dansé Montréal, the plastic orchid factory (with Ame Henderson), Votive Dance, Lamon Dance, Modus Operandi and The SFU rep class.

Upcoming projects include collaborations with Scott Morgan (Loscil); Caroline Shaw (premiering January 2021); and Simona Deaconescu (premiering at National Dance House, Romania). www.actionatadistance.ca 

Petra Zanki image

Petra Zanki

PETRA ZANKI is an award-winning Croatian-American choreographer living in Brooklyn, NY. She was nominated as the best young choreographer in 2010. on Zagreb Dance Platform, and granted multiple residencies across Europe among which choreographic scholarship from ICK-Amsterdam/Emio Greco and Croatian HIPP-TSP, in 2012-2013. Her works have been shown across Europe, US, Canada, the UK, and Australia among which at Movement Research at Judson Church, Coil13/PS122, La Mama, On the Boards, SIDF, 12 Ave Arts/Washington Ensemble Theatre, Base, and at Velocity Dance Center. In the US Petra has received residencies awards: bst residency from The University of Washington/Dance, IMP series at the Velocity Dance Center, Base Residencies at 2017, and 2018, and James Ray Residency Award in 2018-2019. Petra is a recipient of 4CULTURE, smART ventures, and Bossak-Heilbron Foundation Grants. The texts about her works have been published in magazines Tanz, Performance Art Journal-MIT, Performance Research Journal, The Bomb, Kretanja, and Frakcija. She is currently attending the MFA Choreography program at CODARTS/Fontys in the Netherlands. Growing up in Croatia during the war, Petra’s main interest remains the transformation of pain into landscapes of beauty for the benefit of humanity.