Great dance talent can come from anywhere, and at the Joffrey Ballet School we’re committed to helping develop that talent by bringing our world-class summer dance intensives to cities around the United States and the world. Our Joffrey South Ballet and Jazz Contemporary intensives in Athens, Georgia and our Joffrey Southwest Fusion dance intensive in Dallas, Texas bring some of the world’s best instruction to dancers from beginner through pre-professional to dancers in America’s southern states.
Athens, Georgia: Joffrey South Ballet and Jazz Contemporary Intensives
Georgia is home to the Joffrey South Ballet and Jazz summer dance intensives, hosted on the campus of the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia. The ballet intensive is held from June 1 through June 26, 2020, while the jazz and contemporary intensive is held June 15 through June 26.
The Joffrey South intensives are for dancers between the ages of 8 through 20. Joffrey South’s Ballet and Jazz intensives are the only Joffrey summer dance intensives that offer housing for dancers as young as 10.
Dancers joining us in Georgia will attend classes between 8:30AM and 6:00PM, Monday through Friday in the dance studios on the campus of the University of Georgia. Both the ballet and jazz contemporary intensives culminate in one final, fully-produced concert on Friday, June 26th, at 7PM in the Dance Department’s spacious New Dance Theatre. Dancers wishing to participate in the final performance should attend the last two weeks of the intensive season at Joffrey South.
What will students learn each day? In the ballet intensive, every group takes multiple ballet technique classes per day, ranging from 1 hour and 25 minutes to 2 hours. The artistic director has created this rigorous ballet curriculum so that dancers see both artistic and technical improvement at a faster rate than other ballet intensives. Every group takes conditioning, pointe/variations, and a non-balletic dance form in the jazz/contemporary/modern genres every day.
The Joffrey South Jazz and Contemporary intensive is an extension of our New York Jazz and Contemporary program, with smaller class sizes and more focused individual attention. Dancers begin their day with a ballet technique and conditioning class, and then in the afternoon dive into genres in jazz, contemporary, and modern genres. This year the jazz and contemporary program is offering contemporary partnering class – a new addition to our curriculum!
We know that the idea of leaving home to study dance for any period of time can be overwhelming for families, and this is why the artistic director hand-picks and trains the staff and faculty to immediately embrace each dancer into the Joffrey South community upon their arrival. Joffrey South offers smaller class sizes where the staff and faculty make a point to learn each dancer’s name, offer personalized corrections in every class, and make sure that every dancer has a positive experience within our community.
The Joffrey South intensives are under the leadership of Artistic Director Colleen Barnes Merwin, who also directs our Joffrey Colorado Springs ballet intensive, in addition to her duties as a faculty at the University of Georgia and New Jersey City University. She’s joined by other fabulous faculty who share a similar vision for sustainable dancer development:
- Maxfield Haynes, dancer with Complexions
- Suzette Boyer Webb, director of Cincinnati Ballet II
- Jane Wood, Ballet Master at Ballet West
- Jenna Graves, formerly with Ballet Hispanico and currently dancing in San Francisco
- Diego Salterini, co-founder and co-artistic director of Dance Now! Miami
- Kai Hazlewood, performance artist making waves in Los Angeles
- Kristina D’Onofrio, faculty at Ballet Met
- Nena Gilreath, former dancer with Dance Theatre of Harlem and Atlanta Ballet
- Lindsay Giedl, contemporary teacher in the Atlanta area
When not in class, dancers requiring housing will live in a Joffrey-only dormitory on campus of the University of Georgia. Because our Joffrey South program includes housing opportunities for dancers as young as 10, we are strongly committed to their safety and providing a positive, enriching experience for all. Dancers are chaperoned at all times, and residential advisers in the dorms also work hard to provide social activities to help dancers develop friendships and have fun when they’re not in class.
As home to one of the largest universities in the Southeast, the city of Athens, Georgia is well known for its thriving arts and culture scene, including local and touring musical acts and Broadway shows. The University of Georgia campus is at the center of Athens’ cultural offerings, with the Georgia Museum of Art and two theaters booking top tier music and dance talent located right on campus.