AD&M Performance Group Choreographers

Carrie Diamond, Founder, Artistic Director

Carrie Diamond : Founder, Artistic Director

Executive and Artistic Director Carrie Diamond returned to California in 2002 after many years as a dance professional in New York City. In 2006, she founded American Dance & Music (then known as Ballet Santa Barbara). Since then, she has directed and choreographed for all AD&M’s concert programs and has presented the work of numerous guest choreographers. She began her career in Los Angeles, studying ballet with Don Hewitt, and training and performing with the Storie-Crawford Dance Theatre and with Marilyn Allen (Mari Sandoval). In New York City, she studied with Margaret Craske, Diana Byer, Benjamin Harkarvy, and Lawrence Rhodes and performed and toured extensively with the New York Theatre Ballet. She has performed principal and soloist roles by a variety of choreographers such as José Limon, Kurt Joos, Ohad Naharin, and Benjamin Harkarvy. In 1990, she founded New American Ballet Ensemble, a New York City company that promoted new music and choreography. She has taught ballet and choreographed for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center and for the 92nd Street YM&WHA where she was co-director of the Harkness Youth Ballet. Ms. Diamond holds an M.F.A in Dance from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and certification from DEL (Dance Education Laboratory). In Santa Barbara, Ms. Diamond has directed many AD&M concert programs to critical acclaim, featuring her own work and the work of many guest choreographers. She established Dance: Up Close and Cultural in 2008. Ms. Diamond and Mr. Valinsky collaborated on Wisperfal, performed at the Lobero Theatre in 2010 for the community and for 1,400 children. She teaches adult ballet classes throughout the year with AD&M Studio.

Mari Sandoval, Guest Choreographer

Mari Sandoval : Guest Choreographer

Mari Sandoval was trained in Spain and the U.S by such notables as Carmelita Maracci, Enrique “el cojo”, Carmen Mora, Inesita, Nana Lorca, Lupe del Rio and Roberto Amaral. Mari performed with Roberto Amaral’s Ballet Español de Los Angeles as principal dancer and was the company’s ballet mistress. She has performed in theaters such as the Lobero, Wilshire Ebell, Japan American, Fox, Smother’s, as well as numerous other venues throughout the U.S. and Canada. Mari Sandoval was a choreographer for the Bilingual Foundation of the Arts from 1987-2009, and she has created choreographies inspired by Garcia Lorca’s work such as Lorca, Child of the Moon, and opera, Yerma, Donna Rosita la Soltera, Blood Wedding, and Las Mujeres de Lorca, as well as many other annual productions produced in Spanish and English. Ms. Sandoval currently teaches flamenco to adults at various venues in Los Angeles. She currently studies with Inesita.

Nathan Cottam, Guest Choreographer

Nathan Cottam : Guest Choreographer

Nathan Cottam was raised in Buffalo, New York, where he studied theater and music from an early age. He attended ballet class as a Sociology major at Brigham Young University and performed with the University’s ballet company. Following a summer intensive in Vermont in 2000 where he began to choreograph, Nathan first danced professionally with Northern Ballet Theatre in Nashua, New Hampshire. After a few years in the North East, he earned his MFA from the prestigious School of Dance at the University of Arizona. He also served as the Dance Director for Legacy Dance Theatre's 2008 production of Pioneer Legacy and performed in China on tour with Kim Robards Dance. In 2010, he was featured in AD&M Performance Group’s production of Carrie Diamond’s Wisperfal, performed in residence at the Lobero Theater in Santa Barbara. Nathan spent 2012-2014 in Belgrade, Serbia, where he danced with the National Ballet and formed his own touring company, Mannakin Theater and Dance. Nathan has created ballets for his company as well as the Oberlin Dance Collective in San Francisco and Peninsula Ballet Theatre in San Mateo, CA. Nathan is pleased to be continuing his collaboration with Carrie Diamond and American Dance and Music.