Featured Arts Management Alumni & Students

Shanda Domango
My career as an arts administrator began at the age of eighteen when I became the Assistant Director of Debbie Richard's Dance School in New Orleans, Louisiana. I earned my BSBA in Management, Dance Minor, Magna Cum Laude from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

While in Lafayette I accomplished the Performing Arts Society of Acadiana's (PASA) Arts Management Internship, where I coordinated the region's first Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Festival as well as outreach projects in conjunction with the visiting opera Porgy and Bess. I also had the honor of serving as the Assistant Director and Hip Hop Instructor of P.J.'s Dance School for four years.

I arrived in Los Angeles in 2010, and received an MA in Arts Management.
Garrett Collins
Communications Coordinator, Los Angeles Opera
Garrett Collins is the communications coordinator at Los Angeles Opera, where he implements and manages a variety of audience development programs for young professionals, college students, families, community groups and newcomers to opera. Before joining the marketing team, Collins managed a number of community outreach initiatives within the education and community programs department, including programs for seniors, adults and college students.

He also oversaw the company's team of 65 volunteer community educators. Collins participated in the Los Angeles County Arts Commission's Arts Internship Program, and served as a grants panelist for the county's Organizational Grant Program. He received his bachelor's degree from UCLA in flute performance and obtained a master's in arts management at Claremont Graduate University. An enthusiast of chamber music, Collins also serves on the board of directors for Pacific Serenades, a self-presenting chamber ensemble based in Los Angeles.
Ireesh Lal
Six Degrees Records
During my first year in the M.A. in Arts Management program at Claremont Graduate University, I am pleased to say that I have learned so much applied knowledge. I regularly take what I learn in class and apply it to my work. With 10 years experience working with start-ups in the Internet industry, I hope to apply the knowledge I gained from working with technology, media and other enterprise companies to the arts sector.

My introduction to the arts came as a trumpet player, learning through the public school’s music education program. Eventually, I received a B.M in Jazz Studies along with a B.S. in The Music Industry from the University of Southern California. During my senior year at USC, I was fortunate to have been offered a recording contract from Geffen Records, while also working as a Music Supervisor for a company called Threshold Entertainment on their feature film, “Beowulf."

Currently, I am a recording artist on Six Degrees Records (Fontana/Universal Music Group) with a band called Lal Meri. The debut album reached #38 on iTunes Top Albums chart in 2009, after receiving a very favorable review on NPR’s “All Things Considered”. Other recent highlights include an interview I gave on PRI’s “The World," a featured live performance on KCRW’s “Morning Becomes Eclectic," and placement in TV show, “CSI Miami."

Applying the entrepreneur spirit and drive for innovation that I experience while working with Bay area technology companies is something that I am excited to bring to the arts sector.
Camille Schenkkan
Educational Programs Manager, Center Theater Group
"The time I spent in the Arts Management Program at Claremont Graduate University was such a gift. When I entered the program in 2007, I was working as a children’s DJ and the part-time Development Director for a small local theatre company. Three years later, I was the Operations Director for Los Angeles County’s arts advocacy organization, Arts for LA, and had taken a leadership role in the Emerging Arts Leaders/Los Angeles network. I built relationships with dozens of arts management professionals nationwide.

I’ve been inspired to foster my own creativity and increase the organizational capacity of my theatre company, Circle X Theatre Co., where I continue to volunteer. I can trace these opportunities to my time at Claremont Graduate University."

"In fact, I approached Arts for LA’s Executive Director after she guest-taught an Intro to Arts Management course session. I told her I’d enjoyed her presentation and asked if she needed an assistant. Two and a half years later, working at Arts for LA helped me establish myself as a professional arts manager."

"The program’s curriculum—a combination of MBA courses through the Drucker School and arts management classes (often taught by high-level working professionals)-- has given me a solid foundation for leading arts and cultural organizations as well as business skills applicable in any field. I appreciate the Arts Management program’s balance of academic rigor and practical management strategies. As a working student, I was able to earn my degree in three years by taking advantage of CGU’s evening and weekend courses. Claremont is only about an hour from my home in Hollywood, so commuting wasn't a problem."

"I’d recommend this program to anyone interested in becoming a balanced, strategic and focused arts and cultural leader. I had a wonderful experience and look forward to staying in touch with the colleagues and mentors I’ve met through the Arts Management Program at CGU."
Matthew Wells
Executive Director, Diavolo
Matt is an experienced arts management professional. In 2012, he was honored with a Ralph M. Parsons Foundation Fellowship for nonprofit leadership. Prior to his work at Diavolo, Matt founded the Los Angeles theater company needtheater, where he served as Artistic Director for five years, producing many world premieres. Matt is a board member for the Hollywood Fringe Festival and has been a consultant for the LA Stage Alliance. As an actor, Matt worked with AR Gurney, Sigourney Weaver, Elizabeth Swados, and Josh Fox. Education: Northwestern University- Theater, B.S.; Claremont Graduate University- Arts Management, M.A.

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