Park Profiles: Meet Robyn Carlson!

Kristen MihalkoBalboa Park Cultural Partnership, One Park - One Team, Park Profiles, Uncategorized

Robyn is the Operations & Programs Administrator with the San Diego Civic Youth Ballet. She has been an integral part of the Park since 2010 as both a volunteer and Park team member. Robyn actively attends events, programming, and groups throughout the Park. Her positive attitude and experience working in education and customer service make her an asset to Balboa Park as a whole.

1. What brought you to Balboa Park and eventually the San Diego Civic Youth ballet?

I started out as a volunteer for the San Diego Natural History Museum and was hired in the Education Department. I also worked at the Fleet Science Center doing science demonstrations. I eventually started working at the San Diego Civic Youth Ballet as the Office Assistant, and transitioned into my current position as Operations & Programs Administrator. I’ve always had a passion for the arts and danced when I was younger, so now I get to share my passion with those I work with!

2.What has surprised you most about working for the Ballet, and for the Park as a whole?

How dedicated the dancers are to ballet! Some dancers are here six days a week and manage to maintain good grades in school. It’s amazing to watch them work so hard in class and rehearsal and then watch them dance their hearts out on stage. As for the Park as a whole, it has to be how connected everyone is. We all work for different organizations, yet come together to enrich the arts and culture community. I am also surprised by the constant Park happenings! Before working here, I just thought of Balboa Park as a bunch of museums, but now I know it’s filled with performers, scientists, history lectures, artists, gardens, and more. There’s never a dull moment in the Park!

3. What is the most interesting part of working for the Civic Youth Ballet?

Definitely working with dancers. We have dancers ranging from 4 to 18 years old, and they all have such unique personalities. For some of them, ballet is their whole world, and for others, it’s just one of many activities they participate in. I get to interact with them on a daily basis and get the opportunity to watch them grow into wonderful young adults. Working at the ballet always keep me on my toes! (pun intended!)

4. What exciting things are coming up for the Ballet?

Right now we’re gearing up for our school-wide Spring Showcase happening later this month, where our students perform pieces they’ve been working on in class. We are also in the process of planning our annual scholarship fundraiser, Fairy Tales in the Park, taking place on August 19 and 20. This is such a fun production where we transform the Casa del Prado Theater lobby into an enchanted forest and bring classic fairy tales to life on stage. We also have our outdoor Fairy Tale Village filled with fun booths and activities for kids and adults. It’s definitely my favorite production!

5. Best advice in encountering a new or challenging situation at the SDCYB?

Always be open and optimistic! I’m pretty much the front of the line person at SDCYB, so I deal with a lot of people from different aspects of life. I never know a person’s situation, so I try to be open and hear their side of things. I also try to remain optimistic when dealing with difficult situations such as classes being full or performances being sold out. I always try to give other options that may work!

6. What do you like to do outside of work?

If I’m not working, I’m most likely at Disneyland or Petco Park. I’m a huge Disney and Padres fan and love visiting Disneyland and going to baseball games. I love to hang out with my boyfriend, friends, and family, so chances are I’m with one of them as well.

7. Favorite book, TV show, movie, song?

I’m a big Harry Potter fan! The books and movies are my favorite and I love to get wrapped up in the Wizarding World. Secretly, I’m still waiting on my Hogwarts acceptance letter.

8. If given a chance, who would you like to be for the day?

My cat! It would be so nice to lounge around all day with no responsibilities. I’m so envious of her days spent sleeping, eating, and playing with toys.

9. What is your favorite spot in Balboa Park?

My favorite spot in the Park is the Zoo. I have a passion for animals and love seeing the different types of species there. I can watch some of the animals for hours and never get bored. I love spending time at the Zoo, whether it’s a planned all-day trip or a spontaneous walk over for an hour or so, it’s always a blast!