Amelia began her training at Ballet & Theater Arts under Rebecca Crowell, where classical technique was taught and performances were a main aspect of the ballet school’s paradigm. In 2006 Amelia joined the Diablo Ballet Apprentice Program. During this rigorous two-year training, Amelia honed in on classical Russian training as well as building contemporary exposure and performing opportunities in Walnut Creek and Santa Rosa.
Upon graduation from high school, Amelia became the first apprentice at Company C. Contemporary Ballet under the directorship of Charles Anderson. Here, she worked closely with the company members and numerous choreographers, such as Val Caniparoli and Greg Dawson. Then in 2009, Amelia joined Peninsula Ballet Theater (PBT) and performed soloist roles in the Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty. Additionally, she was a full-time student at the University of San Francisco (USF) while continuing to rehearse and perform with PBT until she graduated with a Psychology degree in 2012. Immediately upon completion of undergraduate school, Amelia directly launched into the School of Education at USF where she recently completed her Teaching Credential and earned a Masters of Art in Teaching.
Bondy Owens is a dancer and choreographer from Vista, California. In 2006, Ms. Owens joined the newly formed Los Angeles Ballet Company where she performed in The Nutcracker, La Sylphide and several works by George Balanchine including Concerto Barocco, Serenade, Rubies, Four Temperaments, Who Cares?, and Tschaikovsky Piano Concerto No.2. In 2010, she danced at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City for Scrying, a conceptual art piece created by Jen Denike and choreographed by Melissa Barak.
Ms. Owens attended University of California Los Angeles and graduated in 2010 with degrees in World Arts and Cultures and European Studies. For her graduate work, she attended University of California Irvine where she presented her thesis concert Corps Concepts, a three movement ballet which explored the corps de ballet through live performance and video projections. After graduating in June 2012, with her Master of Fine Arts in Dance Bondy moved to the Bay Area where she has been teaching and dancing.
Carlos, a San Francisco native, began his ballet training at age 18 at The Academy of Ballet San Francisco under Richard Gibson and Zory Karah 6 years ago and continues his training with the addition of Joshua Trader and Elizabeth Gravelle as his instructors There he danced with the school’s non-profit company, Chamberdance SF, where he performed works by Richard Gibson, Joshua Trader, Elizabeth Gravelle, and MaryEllen Hunt. He has also performed excerpts from The Nutcracker, Por Vos Muero, Raymonda, Les Patineurs, and Etudes. This is his first season with Peninsula Ballet Theatre.
Christina Schifano, from Setauket, New York started dancing at the age of 9. She received her early training at Seiskaya Ballet Academy, before beganing her professional training at Ellison Ballet Professional Training Program under the direction of Edward Ellison. Christina was awarded full scholarships from American Ballet Theatre and Bolshoi Ballet summer intensives. In 2008 she won 1st place at the Youth America Grand Prix regionals competition in New York . Through this competition, she was awarded a contract with The Washington Ballet under the direction of Septime Webre. During her time with the company she performed several classics as well as La Sylphide alongside David Hallberg. Christina taught all levels of ballet at the Seiskaya Ballet Academy and has been a faculty member for Provoke Movement Workshops.
Katelynn was raised in San Lorenzo, CA. She has studied at The Conservatory of Classical Ballet for eleven years under the direction of Ann Fisher. In the school year of 2012-2013 Katelynn attended The Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet. Katelynn received a full scholarship and attended the Colorado Ballet’s summer intensive, in 2013. She has also attended summer intensive programs with Houston Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, The Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Classical Ballet, and American Ballet Theatre. Katelynn has performed roles in ballets such as “Aurora” in Sleeping Beauty, “Snow Queen” and “Sugar Plum Fairy” in Nutcracker, “Cygnets” in Swan Lake, and “Swanilda” in Coppelia.
Kelsey McFalls is from Syracuse, New York and first began her training with Dance Centre North. Kelsey has attended intensives at ABT New York, Saratoga Summer Dance Intensive, on scholarship at Nutmeg Conservatory, and Alonzo King Lines Ballet, and as an RA at Princeton Ballet School. She has danced as a trainee with American Repertory Ballet for two seasons and was hired as an apprentice for ARB’s 2012-2013 season. Kelsey was hired by American Contemporary Ballet in Los Angeles for their 2013 M+D:LA season and featured as a soloist in Lincoln Jones’ American Quartet. Kelsey has also performed at Jacob’s Pillow and played the role of the Queen in the world premiere of Mary Barton’s ballet Faerie Tyme. She is currently taking time off from school, but began attending New York University for Applied Psychology.
Lara was born and raised in San Mateo. She trained at the San Francisco Ballet School for seven years where she performed student roles in The Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty, and Giselle. She has also studied ballet at the Academy of Ballet in San Francisco, UC San Diego, and Western Ballet (where she most recently performed in Coppélia). Lara debuted with PBT in 1995 as one of the “Three Blind Mice” in The Nutcracker, and she became an apprentice in 2003. She is delighted to return to PBT after a 10-year absence. Lara received her B.S. in Cognitive Science (specializing in Human-Computer Interaction) from UCSD, and is currently pursuing her M.S. in Human Factors & Ergonomics at San José State University.
James Rogers has trained The Academy of Ballet in San Francisco for over 9 years. This is James first year with Peninsula Ballet Theatre.
Alec Guthrie received his June 2013 BFA in Dance from UC Irvine’s Claire Trevor School of the Arts. At UCI he trained and worked with Jodie Gates, David Allan, Tong Wang and extensively with Donald McKayle, as a member of his Etude Ensemble. In 2013 Alec had the privilege of performing as featured soloist in World Premieres of McKayle’s Ancestral Flight and Gates’ The Sacre Project. He also appeared as soloist in Tong Wang’s collaboration with the Pacific Symphony Orchestra. For four years Alec performed at Laguna Dance Festival and for three years at various venues as a member of Will Johnston and Marissa Osato’s contemporary company Entity. During the past eight years, Alec has performed roles ranging from the Prince, Snow King and Rat King to Chinese and Russian in Nutcracker productions choreographed or staged by David Allan, Ayako Takahashi and now, Carlos Carvajal. Alec attended Hubbard Street Dance Company’s intensive training, learning repertoire pieces by choreographers such as Alejandro Cerrudo, Sharon Eyal, and Jonathan Fredrickson. He has trained or worked with Complexions Contemporary Ballet, The Trey McIntyre Project, Ballet Austin, Spellbound and Hamburg Ballet.
Roger Alexander Fonnegra
Mr. Fonnegra received his primary dance training at the Caracas Ballet School of Teresa Carreno, and shortly after joined the National Ballet of Caracas as an apprentice. He traveled to the US on a government scholarship to train with the School of American Ballet on a full scholarship and with Whilhelm Burmann. He later returned to his native Venezuela where he danced with the Ballet National of Caracas, accompanying them on an international tour. In 2003, he joined Columbia Classical Ballet and has since appeared as a guest artist with the Ballet Camara of Caracas, the Pennsylvania Ballet in John Cranko’s production of Romeo and Juliet, Cuban Classical Ballet of Miami, Sierra Nevada Ballet, New Haven Ballet, and Seiskaya Ballet. Most recently he has performed for the past seven years with Festival Ballet Providence in RI under the direction of Mihailo Djuric. Past roles include George Balanchine’s Rubies, Donizetti Variations and Allegro Brillante, Anthony Tudor’s Continuo and The Leaves are Fading, the Fairy Doll Pas de Trois, Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo, Viktor Plotnikov’s La Camorra and Short Stories, Yves De Boutellier’s Romeo and Juliet (Paris), Raymonda (four men), Neopolitan & Hungarian in Swan Lake, and Doll, Arabian, Chinese, & Marzipan and much more in Festival Ballet Providence’s The Nutcracker.In 2012 to 2013 he join ballet Idaho,dancing in the productions of Serenade by George Balanchine and Nutckracker, Carmen, Don Quixote and Swan lake.
Rosselyn Ramirez was born and received her training in Caracas, Venezuela. From 2005-2011, she performed with Ballet Classico de Camara Nina Novak, and with the Ballet National de Caracas Teatro Teresa Carreño. She has danced principal roles in the classical ballet repertoire, including Le Corsaire, Esmeralda and the Nutcracker and in contemporary ballets such as La Vale, Amor, Brujo, Passion, and Texturas. Ms. Ramirez has performed in Uruguay and Cuba, and was a guest artist at the 21st Festival of Ballet in Havana, Cuba. Since joining Diablo Ballet in 2011, Ms. Ramirez has danced in works by KT Nelson, Dominic Walsh, and Septime Webre.
Derek Sakakura trained on scholarship with the San Francisco Ballet School and the Houston Ballet Academy. He has danced with the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago, the San Francisco Opera Ballet, Ballet Austin, and Ballet Met, where he performed in Balanchine’s “Rubies” and “Stars and Stripes”, the Prince in “Cinderella”, and Mercutio in “Romeo and Juliet”. Mr. Sakakura has toured nationally with “The King and I”, performed the role of Taro with “Ulalena” in Maui, played the role of Bernardo in Woodminster Theater’s “Westside Story”, and was featured as the Rescuer in Clint Eastwood’s film, “Hereafter”. Since joining Diablo Ballet in 2011, he has been featured as The Moor in Jose Limon’s “The Moor’s Pavane”, and the Pas de Deux from Christopher Wheeldon’s “Mercurial Manoeuvres”.
Jennifer Friel Dille
Jennifer Friel Dille is from Boise, Idaho. She trained on scholarship at the Ballet Idaho, Nashville Ballet and Princeton Ballet schools. Ms. Friel Dille performed with Eugene Ballet/Ballet Idaho, American Repertory Ballet and Peninsula Ballet Theatre before joining Inland Pacific Ballet in 2002 as a soloist. She was promoted to principal in 2004. Some of her favorite roles include the title role in “The Little Mermaid”, Lucy in “Dracula”, Russian Girl in “Serenade” and as Sugar Plum Fairy in “The Nutcracker”. Ms. Friel Dille has also enjoyed dancing in new works by Arturo Fernandez, Lynn Taylor-Corbett, Septime Webre, Lila York and Stephanie Orza. She made her debut with Diablo Ballet in March 2012 performing in “Dancing Miles” and “Fluctuating Hemlines.”
Justin VanWeest received his training at the North Carolina School for the Arts on full scholarship. He performed with North Carolina Dance Theatre for nine seasons dancing principal roles in contemporary and classical ballets by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Alvin Ailey, Nacho Duato, Jose Limon, Dwight Rhoden and Twyla Tharp. This is his first season with Diablo Ballet.
Ailen Videla Ortiz
Tara Jade Leach