Gregory Amato - Artistic Director
Greogry Amato has a wide breadth of experience in the international world of ballet. During his four years with Ballet Du Nord in France, Mr. Amato performed in 53 countries. These included performances before the Queen of England, two presidents, numerous ambassadors, dignitaries and prime ministers.
He was tapped by New York City Ballet principal dancer Edward Villella to join him as a founding member of Villella's Miami City Ballet. After relocating to the Bay Area, he was similarly chosen by Michael Smuin as a founding member of Smuin Ballet. While dancing there, Smuin created several ballets on Mr. Amato, including "Frankie and Johnny,” and "Cyrano." He also appeared in the movie, "The Fantastics," which Smuin choreographed.
Mr. Amato's primary teacher and inspiration was New York City Ballet Dancer, Nolan T'Sani. He also studied under full scholarships at the San Francisco Ballet School and the Joffrey Ballet School in New York.
Mr. Amato competed and won the gold medal in the Fred Astaire International Ballroom Dance Competition. Despite his impressive ballet career, his personal highlight was his experience as the featured dancer at Carnegie Hall for the 100th Celebration of George Gershwin’s birthday.
Carlos Carvajal, Director Emeritus and Choreographer - Nutcracker
Carlos Carvajal is an internationally known choreographer of more then 200 works of ballet, opera and television. A native San Franciscan, Carvajal is a sixth generation theatrical artist of Spanish-Filipino-Swedish decent. He began his dance career with the Christensens at San Francisco Ballet, then traveled to Europe. He danced with the International Ballet of The Marquis de Cuevas as a soloist, then became a principal dancer and choreographer with Theater der Freien Hansastadt Bremen, Theatre de Bordeaux and Ballet Nuevo Mundo de Caracas. During his career in Europe and South America, he choreographed over 78 works for ballet, opera and the television Show de Aldemaro Romero. After 10 years abroad, Carvajal returned to the San Francisco Ballet as ballet master, and associate choreographer to Lew Christensen, where he created 18 ballets. In 1970, he founded and directed the San Francisco Dance Spectrum. Carvajal and his company were recognized leaders in the dance renaissance of the 70’s, choreographing over 50 works during its existence.
He has also choreographed for the SF Opera, Oakland Ballet and Dance Theater of Harlem, among others. In 1981, he received the first San Francisco Art Commission Award of Honor for his outstanding work in choreography and dance, and in 1986 he received the Isadora Duncan Award for a lifetime of significant work. Carvajal received the Critics Circle Award in 1990 and was the co-artistic director for the 29th S.F. Ethnic Dance Festival of 2007.
His full length ballets include, Cinderella’s Crystal Slipper, Totentanz, Wintermas, and Carmina Burana. Carvajal first presented his Nutcracker as the opening program of Peninsula Ballet Theatre’s 1994-95 season. This is his 16th Nutcracker with PBT. Carvajal continues to lend his expertise and creativity to Peninsula Ballet Theatre as Director Emeritus.