The lineage of MB professionals is diverse. From faculty who trained with founder Leona Norman…to dancers from around the world who retire from the stage to teach here with us…to actors and musicians…to staff from the worlds of film, fashion, and education…to a board of engaged alumni, parents, and business professionals…all are dedicated to Marin Ballet’s mission of excellent classical ballet training and promoting the art of dance.
We are proud of how our community has come together during
challenging times to connect, support, and create.
Executive Director Eman Isadiar joined Marin Ballet in 2021 with 20 years of leadership experience in the performing arts with particular emphasis on youth education programs. He looks forward to working closely with Artistic Director Cynthia Lucas to chart the path forward into Marin Ballet’s seventh decade.
“It is not only vital to train future artists and educators, but equally important to foster the next generation of audiences and philanthropists to keep the arts community thriving.”
Cynthia Lucas, Artistic Director and MB Alumna trained with founder Leona Norman before embarking on a 26-year career with the National Ballet of Canada. Upon retirement, Ms. Lucas returned home to MB. She has directed two originals works by Julia Adam, created a partnership with the The Balanchine Trust, and ongoing collaborations with numerous visiting choreographers. Her vision for classical ballet training and promoting the art of dance have now expanded to include virtual training platforms and programs.
“The work in the studio is a process of discovery that’s personal for each student at every age. I am inspired by the journey.”
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“As a teacher I am ever-evolving. That is the beauty of teaching children; you get to grow with them and because of them.”
A graduate of Canada’s National Ballet School, Catherine began her professional career with The National Ballet of Canada under Artistic Director Erik Bruhn. She went on to a successful commercial/film career in Los Angeles that includes five film industry awards as Co-Producer of the dance documentary An Improbable Dream. In 2013, she joined the dance faculty at Arizona School for the Arts and The School of Ballet Arizona and is also a certified yoga instructor. This is Catherine’s second year with Marin Ballet.
Julia trained with the National Ballet School in Toronto, and upon graduation in 1983, spent five years with the National Ballet of Canada, and then joined the San Francisco Ballet in 1988, becoming a principal dancer in 1996. Upon retiring from the stage in 2002, Ms. Adam quickly gained recognition as one of the dance world’s rising talents in choreography. Ms. Adam has been featured in Dance Magazine, received the Isadora Duncan Award for Choreography, and currently directs her own dance company.
Jennings has taught at schools and companies in the United States and abroad. She was ballet mistress and company teacher for The Pennsylvania Ballet for 9 years and San Francisco Ballet for four years. Jennings is now a full time repetiteur for The George Balanchine Trust and also on staff as a teacher and repetiteur at Marin Ballet.
“I strive with a compassionate heart to share with my students a love of ballet nurtured from my own dance experience.”
Corinne Jonas received her training at Marin Ballet and danced professionally with Houston Ballet and Diablo Ballet. Ms. Jonas performed principal and soloist roles in many classical and Balanchine ballets,
contemporary works and Broadway works. She directed Berkeley Ballet Theater until joining Marin Ballet’s faculty in 2006.
“I try to motivate working at a high effort level every day…to exploit strengths and attack weakness. This means staying on specific areas of technique for longer periods of time.”
David Kato trained at Marin Ballet and holds a B.A. in Dance from Dominican University. He danced professionally with Empire State Ballet in New York and has danced as a Guest Artist with many Bay Area companies including Oakland Ballet, Western Ballet, Berkeley Ballet Theater, and Margaret Wingrove Dance Company. He has taught technique, pas de deux, and boys’ training in schools throughout the Bay Area, and joined the MB faculty in 2003.
“I feel privileged to teach these wonderful children and be a part of their lives, no matter how long or short the time they study ballet.”
“Working with the young and wise dancers of MB is an honor. They are my greatest inspiration, reminding me that movement in life and our body is our home.”
“Dance provides endless inspiration and a beautiful way to tell a story. Tell your story with passion.”
Laura trained with Contra Costa Ballet, California Ballet and Oakland Ballet Academy. At age seventeen she joined the Oakland Ballet Company. After dancing with OBC she earned both a BA in Dance and an ABA-approved
post-baccalaureate paralegal certificate from Saint Mary’s College of California. Laura has taught at Ballet Arts in Oakland and Oakland Ballet Academy. She is honored to be a part of Marin Ballet’s faculty since 2018.
“May we continue to use this time to turn our focus inward from the safety of our homes, and in turn allow ourselves to be more generous with our art than ever before.”
Casey Lee Thorne
Dancer, educator, choreographer, and scholar, Casey Thorne trained with American Repertory Ballet’s Princeton Ballet School, Alonzo King LINES Ballet BFA Program, and received her MFA in Dance Studies from Mills College in 2018. Casey is the Artistic Director of Inside Out Contemporary Ballet, a Fulbright Israel Fellow, and served as Assistant Professor of Dance at Southern Utah University 2019-2020. She is thrilled to have served Marin Ballet since 2012.
Cynthia Lucas, Artistic Director
Timothy K. Murphy
Haley Tone, Board Chair
Angie Hisanaga, Vice Chair
Kathryn Hansen, Treasurer
Louise Lo, Secretary