Ballet is our passion.
Founded by award-winning teacher Georné Aucoin in 2004, the International City School of Ballet has become one of the most respected pre-professional ballet academies in Atlanta. The International City School of Ballet (ICSB), under the artistic direction of Ms. Aucoin, embodies a strong desire to inspire all students to realize their fullest potential. The vision Ms. Aucoin had for the school was not only to educate dancers in the Middle Georgia area but also to educate the community with the performing arts. The school would enable serious young dancers to receive extensive training year-round while also being able to experience valuable performance opportunities. Since then it quickly became a standard of excellence in dance education throughout GA and has generated widespread attention in the dance community as a school that raises the bar.
ICSB strives to enrich the lives of students through the introduction and study of classical dance. In order for students to triumph as dancers, the school assembles a select faculty of highly qualified professionals each year and a curriculum that blends discipline and enjoyment in equal measure. Through quality facilities, a dedicated team and effective programs, ICSB aims to challenge each student to reach their fullest individual potential and to discover a keener love for the art of dance.
In addition to long-term and short-term training, students of ICSB have had the opportunity to participate successfully in some of the world’s largest student ballet competitions such as the Youth America Grand Prix, World Ballet Competition, Prix de Lausanne, USA International Ballet Competition, etc. Since January 2013, the Youth America Grand Prix has presented ICSB with the Outstanding Teacher and Outstanding Choreographer Award in addition to the Outstanding School Award.
Beginning in May 2014, ICSB relocated its facilities to Smyrna in order to better serve students in the Atlanta metropolitan area.For us, moving into our new, bright, and spacious dance studios marks and important step into the future. Our goals are to remain one of the leading ballet schools and to improve our performance everyday.
WHAT WE LOOK FOR IN A DANCER.
Dance is about connecting with pleasure, listening to your body, and building awareness of sensations. It’s about personal, investigative research that encourages using all of the senses to become aware of your body. Attention to gravity, texture, tension, and dimensionality are important. It requires serious focus, but also encourages laughter, silliness, and release. Magnetic alertness, fluidity, and authenticity in movement is important too. Use of breath, eyes and playfulness are particularly noticeable and desired.
It could be about the main character’s struggle; or about love, loss, sacrifice, death, pleasure, pain or healing. Its about making the audience have their own story. sometimes it is a sublime combination of the weird and the interesting. We’ve always been intrigued about stretching the boundaries and constantly challenging the limit. Its not literal, but more a mental block. Its about getting out of that block and conquering the stage and your audience.
We are not interested in how people move, but in what moves them.
So, what is your story?
Our mission is simple: It’s all about the student.
ICSB teaches students to build a dream in their art. This dream can be accomplished through a combination of training, dedication, and most importantly, passion. Our curriculum gives each dancer the tools not only to be an accomplished technician but also to believe and truly understand the art of ballet.
The age requirements described and structure of our program is used as a general guideline to the function of our program. At ICSB, dancers are placed in a level according to their current technical ability and will not keep a dancer in a level solely based on age. Dancers may often be moved up a level according to improvements in technical ability.
ICSB’s ambition is to provide all students with the limitless utility of a dance education that transfers further than technical achievements. We aim to inspire the next generation of leaders and innovators; a self-disciplined, creative and driven workforce that will shape the cultural landscape of the 21st Century.
Through the training offered at ICSB, students will cultivate the grit and work-ethic necessary to be successful in anything they choose. The dedication and attention to detail learned in ballet training cultivates a work ethic that can be translated to all aspects of life and lead to success in various activities and careers.
The primary goal of the International City School of Ballet is to provide exceptional ballet instruction to our students. In doing so, we strive to create a healthy and positive atmosphere in which all dancers can develop strong dance technique, poise, confidence, musicality, creativity, and artistry. For this reason, ICSB believes that a delicate balance must be maintained to produce the ideal environment for optimal learning.
Over the years of its existence, ICSB has found that three specific qualities are essential in preserving this. All students, instructors and parents are encouraged to embody these three attributes in order to maximize individual results and create an overall productive experience. They represent the pillars that our institution is built upon. With this ideology, students are guided to learn values that they can carry on to virtually any endeavor in life: self-motivation, professionalism and trust.
ICSB encourages patience and self-mastery in all of our daily and nightly classes. To achieve proficiency in this difficult art-form, students must exert themselves, physically and intellectually, in refining their technique and artistry. Dancers must devote a lot of hours into the training and this develops a sense of discipline and a strong work ethic. Extreme focus is expected as soon as students enter the studio for class at ICSB. Procrastination is gradually replaced by productivity; the benefits of the intense training become evident in their schooling and academics. Adaptability becomes key in becoming an astute learner as information may come in a variety of forms; flexibility of the mind as well as the body is vital to success in this demanding environment where dancers may need to work with directors and choreographers of various temperaments. It is an invaluable tool that can be used to be successful in every aspect of life, whether working in a corporate office or a theater. True dancers do not get discouraged and are taught to utilize criticism in all its forms as a means to attain excellence. Anyone can work hard for a few moments. It all comes down to one thing: how badly do you want something and how hard are you willing to work to get it. This becomes a natural thought process in the mindset of a dancer. Students who successfully complete the programs at ICSB will cultivate the sense of discipline necessary to attain any goal they set their minds to in the future.
We value professionalism as a fundamental and key characteristic for the success and personal growth of each student. Commitment requires a certain level of maturity and children are expected to “grow-up” faster than normal children. New students at ICSB will realize very quickly that the level of hard work one must put into their study is a prerequisite and necessary adjustment to the demands of the professional field. All students at ICSB are expected to work as a corps de ballet, and develop a strong collective identity in order to make the most of their training. In order to be truly successful, students must understand the value of independence and accountability in one’s work while maintaining the utmost respect for their instructors and their peers. By incorporating this into the student’s behavior, ICSB is able to send students out into the world fully confident that they will represent themselves with dignity, humility and intelligence.
It is the most crucial bonding agent that brings cohesiveness at the culmination of one’s training. The training at ICSB is hard work; it is important to trust in the work, the instructors and, most importantly, oneself in order to maximize results. It creates long lasting relationships that will prove invaluable in the dance profession. We offer students a dance education that teaches them to challenge their limits by focusing on the task and identifying the positive aspects of the process. This motivates students to discover meaning behind their work and visualize their study as a personal challenge to satisfy their intellectual curiosity, learn new skills and fully enjoy each and every aspect of dance. It is part of the school’s academic culture to work together to create a hunger for learning that empowers students to find their own paths to success.