Robin Morgan

Executive Director

A native of San Diego, Ms. Morgan began her dancing career with the original San Diego Ballet under the guidance of Richard Carter and Nancy Johnson and later Jillana & Sonia Arova. In 1971, having been awarded a full Ford Foundation Scholarship to the School of American Ballet, she trained under such notables as Alexandra Danilova, Felia Doubrovska, Muriel Stuart, Antonina Tumkovsky and Stanley Williams.  Later she danced with New York City Ballet under the direction of George Balanchine, toured with Suki Schorer’s New York City Ballet Lecture Ensemble, and performed in the Virgin Islands with Helgi Tomasson and Kay Mazzo NYCB Troupe.

Returning to San Diego, Ms. Morgan developed her reputation first as a notable dancer and later as a teacher in many local studios.  She served on the faculty of the School for th eCreative and Performing Arts (SCPA) in Chula Vista, as an officer for the San Diego Dance Alliance, and Rehearsal Assistant for San Francisco Ballet’s San Diego productions of  Nutcracker, Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty.  Ms. Morgan has choreographed dances for various theater groups as well as network television, including the NBC-TV movie “Jonathan, the Boy Nobody Wanted.”  She gives master classes at studios, summer programs, universities and was honored by the San Diego Ara Dance Alliance for her leadership in the dance community.

In 1989, she founded the San Diego School of Ballet, developing talented dancers and presenting successful student performances. San Diego Ballet was established in 1991 to provide graduating students the opportunity to remain in San Diego and work alongside other professional dancers who would prefer to reside in this beautiful city than be forced to look elsewhere to find jobs. Ms. Morgan teamed up with Javier Velasco as Co-Directors and th enew San Diego BAllet is now known for its innovative and creative style.

Javier Velasco

Artistic Director

Javier ValescoJavier Velasco has supplied dances for productions at the La Jolla Playhouse, Old Globe, and has a long-standing relationship with the San Diego Repertory Theatre, where he has staged productions of A CHRISTMAS CAROL, CABARET, HAIRSPRAY, TOMMY, IN THE HEIGHTS, and many others. He has enjoyed many long creative relationships, having worked with: Luis Valdez on the 20th Anniversary production of ZOOT SUIT, BANDIDO, and CORRIDOS.; composer Steve Gunderson on the premieres of SUDS (NYC) DIXIE HIGHWAY, BACK TO BACHARACH AND DAVID (NYC) and the dance/theatre piece THE BRONTES/SECRET PLEASURES,SECRET TEARS; and Douglas Jacobs and Sam Woodhouse, founding directors of the San Diego Rep. He currently serves as artistic director of the San Diego Ballet, having created over 70 original pieces for the company since its inception, including 10 pieces in collaboration with composer David Burge, to commissioned scores. His ballet set to the poems of Kenneth Fearing, LOVE: 20 CENTS THE FIRST QUARTER MILE, was given the award for Best Choreography by the San Diego Area Dance Alliance, the third time he was honored by the organization. Most recently, Mr. Velasco wrote and directed THE TOUGHEST GIRL ALIVE, which premiered at Moxie Theatre and had a successful run at the New York International Fringe Festival. Mr. Velasco was recently awarded a Creative Catalyst Fellowship by the San Diego Foundation to create new work.

Karen Foster

General Manager

Ms Foster owned and taught at her studio, The Australia  Dance Society.  Later, she moved to San Diego while her daughter was a company dancer with the San Diego BAllet.  With her vast knowledge and experience of running a studio, she was hired to become General Manager of both the San Diego Ballet and San Diego School of Ballet while continuing her passion of teaching tap, jazz and pre-ballet.

Noriko Zaragoza

Assistant to the Directors

Born in Kanagawa, Japan, Noriko started her training at the Sasaki Mika Ballet Academy under the direction of Mika Sasaki and Mikio Ikehata.

Noriko has trained at the Christine Walsh Dance Center (now called The Australian Conservatoire of Ballet) in Melbourne, Australia under the direction of Christine Walsh. In her training Noriko has performed many notable principle/soloist roles.

Noriko has won numerous competitions in Japan and Australia such as: 3rd prize in All Japan Ballet Competition, 3rd prize in Itabashi Ballet Competition and Finalist in the “Award to Honorable of the Ballet Teacher’s Workshop (VIC) Scholarships.”

Noriko joined the San Diego Ballet in 2004 under the direction of Robin Morgan and Javier Velasco. Since then she has performed many original pieces with the artistic direction of Mr. Velasco. Noriko danced for 13 years here at San Diego Ballet and she is happy to be transitioning to behind the scenes role.