Carrie Diamond: Ballet Santa Barbara - Santa Barbara, CA U.S.A.

Photo:  Coming soon

Carrie Diamond

Company:  Ballet Santa Barbara


Artist Statement/Philosophy/Mission Statement:
In my choreography, I haved moved away from investigations of external narratives, and musical motivations in favor of a new found interest and fascination with the creative/choreographic exploration of movement that inevitably leads to it’s own meaning. In addition, I am exploring a new relationship with music in which the sound and the dance exist as equal supportive layers. I’m experiencing a terrific sense of freedom and excitement with this new process and approach!

Short Artist/Company Bio:
Carrie Diamond lives in Santa Barbara with her family, having returned to California in 2002 after many years as dance professional in New York City. She founded Ballet Santa Barbara in 2005, a professional contemporary ballet company where she has created and set many of her ballets, including Wisperfal, which premiered October 20, 2010 at the Lobero Theatre. She began her career in Los Angeles, dancing with the Storie-Crawford Dance Theatre Ensemble and studying ballet with Don Hewitt. In New York City, she studied with such luminaries as Margaret Craske, Benjamin Harkarvy and Jacque D’Amboise and performed and toured extensively with the New York Theatre Ballet. She was the founder of New American Ballet Ensemble, (1989-1992) a New York City company that promoted new music and choreography, commissioning two ballets by Harkarvy as well as choreographing many of her own. She has taught ballet for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center and for the 92nd St Y and was the Co-Director for the Harkness Youth Ballet. Ms. Diamond holds an MFA in Dance from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and is a certified teacher for children through DEL (Dance Education Laboratory at the 92nd St. Y). She has choreographed locally for musical productions at Santa Barbara City College and teaches hundreds of children in schools through Ballet Santa Barbara’s Moving To Learn residency program.
Describe some of your achievements over the course of the last five years:

Achievements include:
The founding of Ballet Santa Barbara, a professional contemporary classical company. Since 2006 we have presented six productions of all original choreography, utilizing live music for many of these works.
In January of 2009, Ballet Santa Barbara began its standards based teaching residency program, Moving To Learn. This program reaches over 75% underserved children in public elementary schools.
Most recently, Ballet Santa Barbara has become the newest company to partner with the Lobero Theatre's Youth Programs, bringing live dance to local school children at no charge to schools. In October of 2010, we performed Wisperfal and Haringduet for over 1,000 children. Wisperfal, a thirty minute work, featured choreography by Carrie Diamond, an original score by music director, Eric Valinsky, with lighting and projections by east coast designer, Kim Hanson. This event marked Ballet Santa Barbara’s debut as a resident company at the Lobero Theatre.

What do you hope to gain from the experience of participating in this festival?
I would look forward to meeting and interacting with new dance colleagues, expanding my reach as a choreographer to new audiences, and viewing new and interesting choreography and dancers. I hope to gain broader awareness and knowledge of different choreographic approaches and artistic concerns, and to have a fun time doing it.

Have you participated in other festivals or showcases?
Yes, a few showcases.

If so – what were elements you enjoyed and what areas do you think could have been improved on?
I enjoyed having only one piece to worry about, as opposed to an entire concert of works. I enjoyed not having to be responsible for marketing and P.R.! In general, I think showcases can be problematic for both audience and participants if they lack a cohesive vision. But they can be a lot of fun with so any performers involved.

What Carrie is bringing to the Festival.
Choreographer Carrie Diamond and composer Eric Valinsky will  collaborate on a rigorous, yet lighthearted new work that will utilize chance procedures to determine aspects of the movement, music, lighting and the performance itself. In this way each performance of the work will be different from the other. In giving up certain controls, the
choreographer and composer seek surprising and original outcomes. Ms Diamond says, "I am looking forward to working with dancer Chelsea Yarnell, a native Santa Barbaran currently attending Cal Arts in dance.
Chelsea is a remarkable dancer and I feel her imagination, humor and intelligence will energize this challenging choreographic process. Since Mr. Valinsky worked with John Cage back in the '80's, I hope to learn a few things from him as we collaborate on this piece!"