Programs

ICON Full Day Program

Spend your day doing what you love!

This in-person, full-day arts program is offered for the academic school year on a trimester schedule, and includes an academic course of study through the Iowa City Community School District’s Online Program.

Grades 8-12

Classes run 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM 

Boarding options available.

ICON students are offered an extensive arts education, which includes private and small group coaching sessions plus coursework in the arts with our world-renowned faculty. Academic courses are completed in the state-accredited online learning program through the celebrated Iowa City Community School District. While students can choose to major in dance, theatre arts, music, visual arts, or design & production, they also practice their craft in an interdisciplinary, project-based learning setting, collaborating with other artists to build real-world experience.

At Iowa Conservatory, we cultivate the skills our students need to compete in the top 10% of artists entering college and/or other post-secondary artistic pursuits, opening doors to scholarship and professional opportunities. Network-building workshops, masterclasses, and seminars with special guest teachers and mentors from the industry broaden students’ professional reach.

The ICCSD online high school program offers an extensive academic course of study that meets the diverse educational needs of young adults.  ICON students build individualized learning plans aligned with their unique professional and academic goals with the support of our onsite school counselors.  In addition, ICON’s partnership with ICCSD provides our students access to all learning supports available, including counseling, special education services, and extra-curricular opportunities.  Upon graduation, ICON students receive a high school diploma from ICCSD and a high school Certificate of Performing and Visual Arts Industry Fundamentals with Arts Area Specialization from ICON.

ICON Gap year Program

What a difference a year makes!

This in-person, full-day arts program is offered for the academic school year on a semester schedule.

Post-high school student-artists, 18+ years old

Classes run 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM 

Boarding options available.

Continue to explore your passion with ICON’s Gap Year Experience!  The ICON Gap Year Program is designed for students looking to spend more time preparing to make the next step in their post-secondary educational journey.  ICON’s world-renowned faculty works closely with Gap Year students to achieve their dreams, whether that means preparing for college auditions or placement in professional companies. Students may elect to pair ICON’s arts education with college courses of their choosing or concentrate solely on building their artistic portfolio and preparing for auditions or professional/college applications. Upon completion of two semesters of ICON Gap Year programming, students receive a Gap Year Certificate of Performing and Visual Arts Industry Fundamentals with an Arts Area Specialization.  

Continue to explore your passion with ICON’s Gap Year Experience!  The ICON Gap Year Program is designed for students looking to spend more time preparing to make the next step in their post-secondary educational journey.  ICON’s world-renowned faculty works closely with Gap Year students to achieve their dreams, whether that means preparing for college auditions or placement in professional companies. Students may elect to pair ICON’s arts education with college courses of their choosing or concentrate solely on building their artistic portfolio and preparing for auditions or professional/college applications. Upon completion of two semesters of ICON Gap Year programming, students receive a Gap Year Certificate of Performing and Visual Arts Industry Fundamentals with an Arts Area Specialization.  

  • Individualized, in-person, one-on-one coaching 

  • Support through all aspects of the college application and audition process including preparation and execution

  • Assistance in building portfolios and audition recordings

  • Exploration of a field of study before committing to a 4-year program

  • Showcases, masterclasses, and feedback from industry professionals to curate polished and authentic repertoire, portfolios, and relationships for future networking in student’s area of interest.

  • Arts Concentrations:
    The ICON Gap Year experience offers  private and small group coaching sessions plus coursework in the areas of classical and contemporary dance, vocal/percussive music and composition, theater/musical theater, and design production/visual arts.  Opportunities for collaboration within and across majors are built into our programming weekly, and our faculty is committed to facilitating interdisciplinary artistic projects with rich outcomes for every student-artist.

ICON Half Day Program

Arts every day!

This in-person, afternoon arts program is offered for the academic school year on a trimester schedule for high school students craving more arts in their school day.  

Grades 8-12

Classes run 1:00 – 5:00 

 

ICON Half Day students are offered a comprehensive arts education, which includes 16+ hours weekly of arts curriculum provided by our world-renowned faculty. This program is a great fit for students desiring to remain in their home school setting* but need a more intensive arts education to complement their studies.  ICON Half Day students head to the ICON campus each afternoon to be immersed in arts experiences, along with ICON Full Day and ICON Gap Year students.  Students are placed in classes based on interest, skill level, and experience.  They can hone their craft in the areas of dance, theatre arts, music, visual arts, or design & production.  Opportunities are built into each week for interdisciplinary, project-based encounters with peers that build real-world arts experience.  ICON Half Day students enrolled for more than two years receive a Certificate of Completion in Performing and Visual Arts Industry Fundamentals from ICON.  

Program Comparison

Program Schedule Age/Grade Audition Required Yearly Tuition Payment Plan Options
ICON FULL DAY In-person arts, full-days 9-5 MTWR, 9-4:30 F, trimester schedule. Boarding options available. Grade 8-12 Yes $22,000

$350/year reg. fee + one of the following:

PLAN A: July $20,900 = lump sum upfront (5% discount)

PLAN B: July $7,333/Oct $7,333/Jan $6,784 (2.5% discount)

PLAN C: $2,448 in July then $2,444/month: 9-month (July-March) plan (no discount)

ICON Gap Year In-person arts, full-days 9-5 MTWR, 9-4:30 F, semester schedule. Boarding options available. Post-high school
18+ years old
Yes $22,000

$350/year reg. fee + one of the following:

PLAN A: July $20,900 = lump sum upfront (5% discount)

PLAN B: July $7,333/Oct $7,333/Jan $6,784 (2.5% discount)

PLAN C: $2,448 in July then $2,444/month: 9-month (July-March) plan (no discount)

ICON Half Day In-person arts, half-days 1-5 MTWR, 1-4:30 F, trimester schedule Grade 8-12 No $10,800

$350/year reg. fee + one of the following:

PLAN A: July $10,260 = lump sum upfront (5% discount)

PLAN B: July $3,600/Oct $3,600/Jan $3,330 (2.5% discount)

PLAN C: $1,200/month: 9-month (July-March) plan (no discount)

Academics

ICON blends an extensive in-person arts education with FLEXIBLE PROGRAMMING IN core academic subjects.

Our school counselors work with all students to shape a course of study tailored to fit their specific arts learning and academic goals. This can be fine-tuned to each individual, with student skills, strengths, and interests at the center of the plan. We also provide onsite learning coaches to aid students with time management, course content, assignment completion and navigating online learning and instruction. Learning coaches are available during the school day as well as in off hours; students will have access to learning coaches within their on-site living spaces as needed.

Iowa City Community School District

Students accepted at ICON will have full access to the rigor and richness of the Iowa City Community School District (ICCSD) curriculum, recognized as the best in the state by US News and World Report.

The ICCSD online learning high school program offers a comprehensive course of study that meet the diverse educational needs of young adults. Students have the opportunity to build their own educational path through the use of individual learning plans, which help students and parents select appropriate courses to support the exploration of various career opportunities. View the current ICCSD OLP course offerings here.  

Upon acceptance to ICON, students will be guided through the open enrollment process into the ICCSD OLP. In-state open enrollment is at no cost, while out of state enrollment requires additional tuition and fees as outlined here. Open Enrollment tuition is based on the state cost per pupil from the previous fiscal year.

2023-2024

Afternoon Courses for Iowa City Area High School Students: Half Day Program

Please join us for afternoon arts classes at Iowa Conservatory! View all Fall 2023 courses below.

We make it work for you!

Combine your unique academic schedule with our Half Day Program:
1:00-5:00 PM Mon-Thurs & 1:00-4:30 PM Fri.

ICON Full Day and Gap Year students join Half Day students in our group courses, culminating in both theatre and musical productions!

Theatre Arts Courses

Course Name

“But what's my motivation?” A foundational acting and contemporary scene study course

Focus

Familiarize students with the basics of several acting techniques. Establish a pre-rehearsal warm-up that cultivates present-ness and appropriate physical and vocal hygiene. Establish a method for creating physical and emotional boundaries for partner work. Inspire imagination to put oneself in the given circumstances.

Instructor

This exciting ICON course asks actors to dig deep into better understanding motivation and intention behind the characters they play. While exploring a myriad of characters from contemporary plays, students will be introduced to Uta Hagen, Sanford Meisner, and Constantin Stanislavski practices and techniques. These exercises and studio work assist with trust, kinesthetic awareness, physicality, focus, and creativity. Students will receive individualized coaching within their scene work and will engage with essential dramaturgical analysis that will lay the groundwork for necessary production, period, design, and character research. The synthesis of these two areas will culminate in a final showcase of scenework.

Neutral clothing that allows the freedom for explorative movement. Solid and muted colors preferred. No distracting logos or designs. Barefoot, socks, or close-toed shoes.

Course Description

This exciting ICON course asks actors to dig deep into better understanding motivation and intention behind the characters they play. While exploring a myriad of characters from contemporary plays, students will be introduced to Uta Hagen, Sanford Meisner, and Constantin Stanislavski practices and techniques. These exercises and studio work assist with trust, kinesthetic awareness, physicality, focus, and creativity. Students will receive individualized coaching within their scene work and will engage with essential dramaturgical analysis that will lay the groundwork for necessary production, period, design, and character research. The synthesis of these two areas will culminate in a final showcase of scenework.

Attire

Neutral clothing that allows the freedom for explorative movement. Solid and muted colors preferred. No distracting logos or designs. Barefoot, socks, or close-toed shoes.

Course Name

Odyssey: An actor’s journey from the origins of theatre to autodrama

Focus

What is the relationship between the actor's identity and the origins of theatre? What is the significance of ensemble in the evolution of theatre? How has centuries old theatrical traditions and innovation been kept alive and inspired modern theatre? What is a character’s relationship to the personality and persona?

Instructor

Join ICON for a journey through ancient theatrical practice into authentic artistic identity this fall! Odyssey: An actor’s journey from the origins of theatre to autodrama allows students to better understand the roots of western theatre, while exploring their own artistry. 

The goal of this course is to develop the students’ understanding of the qualities that set theater apart from other art mediums. Students will study elements of theatrical genre and production, alongside specific plays that illustrate these areas. We will begin with Ancient Greek Theatre practice, choro drama ensemble work, tragedy scene study, mask work, and ensemble comedy devising. Students will expand their vocabulary, concentration, physical awareness, imagination, emotional recall, and discipline. Students will also investigate self-discovery and develop an autodrama piece that illuminates the uniqueness of their own performance artistry. Students will share these autodramas as a final project, and leave the course with a road map to investigate the complex personalities of the characters they will play on stage or in future acting classes.

Neutral clothing that allows the freedom for explorative movement. Solid and muted colors preferred. No distracting logos or designs. Barefoot, socks, or close-toed shoes.

Course Description

Join ICON for a journey through ancient theatrical practice into authentic artistic identity this fall! Odyssey: An actor’s journey from the origins of theatre to autodrama allows students to better understand the roots of western theatre, while exploring their own artistry. 

The goal of this course is to develop the students’ understanding of the qualities that set theater apart from other art mediums. Students will study elements of theatrical genre and production, alongside specific plays that illustrate these areas. We will begin with Ancient Greek Theatre practice, choro drama ensemble work, tragedy scene study, mask work, and ensemble comedy devising. Students will expand their vocabulary, concentration, physical awareness, imagination, emotional recall, and discipline. Students will also investigate self-discovery and develop an autodrama piece that illuminates the uniqueness of their own performance artistry. Students will share these autodramas as a final project, and leave the course with a road map to investigate the complex personalities of the characters they will play on stage or in future acting classes.

Attire

Neutral clothing that allows the freedom for explorative movement. Solid and muted colors preferred. No distracting logos or designs. Barefoot, socks, or close-toed shoes.

Music Courses

Course Name

Iconoclasts

Focus

In addition to normal musical rehearsals with the director, Dr. Max Moreno, students can expect to learn the following:

  • The traditions and legacies of small ensemble group singing throughout different periods of history
  • How to create and establish an identity/brand based on the creative talent you have in your ensemble
  • The process of selecting appropriate repertoire and organizing a rehearsal schedule that is most conducive to the group’s learning style
  • The importance and workings of public relations and community resources for the arts and performance artists
  • How to create and keep on top of a rehearsal and performance schedule

Instructor

Iconoclasts is a course designed for singers who want to explore singing in a small group that specializes in tight, close harmonies and arrangements in multiple styles. Acceptance into this group is through audition/placement & approval by the Music Department Chair only, as a high level of musicianship on entry will be expected. Focus will be given to developing a working collegial relationship with fellow ensemble members, concentrating on clean musicianship, and developing an overall sense of style and identity that represents the core personality of the group. Musically, the group will explore a variety of genres, including but not limited to: pop, musical theatre, vocal jazz, and classical music. The group puts together a musical showcase for the public each trimester and collaborates with the Iowa City community to provide outreach and musical entertainment for events as needed. Eventually, a goal for this group will be to also produce a studio recording each year as a final project.

Neutral clothing that allows the freedom for explorative movement. Solid and muted colors preferred. No distracting logos or designs. Barefoot, socks, or close-toed shoes.

Course Description

Iconoclasts is a course designed for singers who want to explore singing in a small group that specializes in tight, close harmonies and arrangements in multiple styles. Acceptance into this group is through audition/placement & approval by the Music Department Chair only, as a high level of musicianship on entry will be expected. Focus will be given to developing a working collegial relationship with fellow ensemble members, concentrating on clean musicianship, and developing an overall sense of style and identity that represents the core personality of the group. Musically, the group will explore a variety of genres, including but not limited to: pop, musical theatre, vocal jazz, and classical music. The group puts together a musical showcase for the public each trimester and collaborates with the Iowa City community to provide outreach and musical entertainment for events as needed. Eventually, a goal for this group will be to also produce a studio recording each year as a final project.

Attire

Official uniform in designated colors will be discussed and developed together with Dr. Moreno to represent the style appropriate for each concert, using basic concert black attire as a base outfit.

Course Name

Musical Theatre Performance & Audition Lab

Focus

Students will obtain training and skills associated with Musical Theatre: singing, acting and movement/choreography, and use correct terminology and vocabulary in written and oral discussion. Students will achieve understanding of the historical, creative, artistic, and aesthetic aspects of musical theatre in relationship to American History. Students will gain knowledge and understanding of the social and cultural impact of the musical theatre art form on society and culture. This will be achieved through a professional and personal understanding of the arts in rehearsals, performances and presentations (both written and aural). Finally, students will compile an audition book with songs from each time period in musical theatre history that will be used for future opportunities in community, college, and professional productions.

Instructor

This course is for those that have an interest in being introduced into the world of Musical Theatre. Students will have the opportunity to rehearse, perform, direct, and choreograph/stage various songs from the Broadway genre, from all different eras of the musical theatre timeline. In addition to instruction on basic audition etiquette and practice, students can expect a rigorous examination of all the different time periods in musical theatre history and the important shows, songs, composers, and authors within each time period. In-class Solo Performances are required for ALL students, and participation is key to success. This class will put on a cabaret featuring songs that they have studied each trimester and also may participate in mainstage ICON events in the James Theater as needed.

Neutral clothing that allows the freedom for explorative movement. Solid and muted colors preferred. No distracting logos or designs. Barefoot, socks, or close-toed shoes.

Course Description

This course is for those that have an interest in being introduced into the world of Musical Theatre. Students will have the opportunity to rehearse, perform, direct, and choreograph/stage various songs from the Broadway genre, from all different eras of the musical theatre timeline. In addition to instruction on basic audition etiquette and practice, students can expect a rigorous examination of all the different time periods in musical theatre history and the important shows, songs, composers, and authors within each time period. In-class Solo Performances are required for ALL students, and participation is key to success. This class will put on a cabaret featuring songs that they have studied each trimester and also may participate in mainstage ICON events in the James Theater as needed.

Attire

Comfortable clothing that can be moved in for class periods, and basic black concert attire for cabarets.

Visual Arts + Design & Production Courses

Course Name

Process to Product: Art and Technique Behind Costume Design and Construction

Focus

  1. Knowledge of costume designer’s roles and responsibilities
  2. Ability to analyze key themes in play and use as a tool for designing
  3. Ability to vocalize ideas to further design elements
  4. Use key terms to find images that can inspire design process
  5. Beginner basic rendering skills, or visual equivalent
  6. Ability to complete a costume design from process to production on paper
  7. Basic sewing skills
  8. Ability to navigate the costume shop and tools

Instructor

In this course, you will learn the basic skills and insight on the art and techniques behind costume design and how costume construction works. The course balances the steps of the costume design process from start to finish in both a technical and creative sense. We will explore practical elements of costume design such as script analysis, rendering skills, and costume tracking paperwork, along with creative exploration through pre-visualization techniques and concept development.

Students will explore ways to communicate information about a show and character through the visual elements of clothing, and have a chance to see a garment through from start to finish. Students will also learn the function of a costume shop, and our shop specifically and how to navigate it. We will learn through hands-on skills in the classroom, exploring different methods of research and creating design concepts, collaborating as a class on design exercises, and working on costumes to be used on the stage. TRI ONE: we will focus on the basics of the process of a costume designer through lectures and collaborative exercises and sewing techniques – including working on garments for the ICON fall play.

Close-toed shoes.

Course Description

In this course, you will learn the basic skills and insight on the art and techniques behind costume design and how costume construction works. The course balances the steps of the costume design process from start to finish in both a technical and creative sense. We will explore practical elements of costume design such as script analysis, rendering skills, and costume tracking paperwork, along with creative exploration through pre-visualization techniques and concept development.

Students will explore ways to communicate information about a show and character through the visual elements of clothing, and have a chance to see a garment through from start to finish. Students will also learn the function of a costume shop, and our shop specifically and how to navigate it. We will learn through hands-on skills in the classroom, exploring different methods of research and creating design concepts, collaborating as a class on design exercises, and working on costumes to be used on the stage. TRI ONE: we will focus on the basics of the process of a costume designer through lectures and collaborative exercises and sewing techniques – including working on garments for the ICON fall play.

Attire

Close-toed shoes.

Course Name

Drawing: Character Design

Focus

Learn the process and importance of a sketch to convey ideas. Draw a character in a variety of ways- different facial expressions/movement of body, etc. Continually analyze and rework artwork and be willing to change and take risks. Strongly consider composition and elements and principles of design in development of the environment. Present work and give an artistic critique of others’ work. Evaluate past and present artwork. Complete final drawing with intention.

Instructor

In this drawing class students will learn the skills to bring a character of their choosing to life on paper. Through projects addressing different drawing techniques and compositional challenges students will explore and experiment as they develop their character and take it on different journeys. Throughout this course we will compile a series of working drawings or studies. In addition, our objective will be for each student to create a final drawing of their character in its environment that communicates an emotion or message. Strong emphasis will be placed on the fundamentals of drawing and design in order to achieve this creative goal. Presentation and critique of artwork will be a regular part of our artistic process.

Clothes that can get paint on them; an oversized shirt or apron is ideal.

Course Description

In this drawing class students will learn the skills to bring a character of their choosing to life on paper. Through projects addressing different drawing techniques and compositional challenges students will explore and experiment as they develop their character and take it on different journeys. Throughout this course we will compile a series of working drawings or studies. In addition, our objective will be for each student to create a final drawing of their character in its environment that communicates an emotion or message. Strong emphasis will be placed on the fundamentals of drawing and design in order to achieve this creative goal. Presentation and critique of artwork will be a regular part of our artistic process.

Attire

Clothes that can get paint on them; an oversized shirt or apron is ideal.

Course Name

The Art of Design

Focus

  1. Rebuild preconceived notions about what art and design is.
  2. Introduce students to the basic process of design.
  3. Explore a variety of mediums.
  4. Learn textual analysis through visual exploration.
  5. Introduce students to critical thinking and problem solving.
  6. Challenge students to think divergently and help them come to a fully realized outcome.


Answer the Essential question: What is design, and how does it affect our lives?

Instructor

Design is the art of the possible. It is the intersection of art and engineering to solve a problem.

This course introduces students to the basic principles and process of design as it applies to different disciplines like Theatrical Design, Architecture, Interior Design, Toy design, Lighting Design and more.

Students will participate in a variety of projects that aim to solve problems using design. Some of the design projects we will be doing in this class include:

  • A board game to teach kindness to Kindergarteners.
  • A video game character
  • A piece of furniture
  • The entrance to a theme park ride

Design is present in our day-to-day lives. This class will help students identify and discover how to use
their creativity to continue designing the world around them.

Course Description

Design is the art of the possible. It is the intersection of art and engineering to solve a problem.

This course introduces students to the basic principles and process of design as it applies to different disciplines like Theatrical Design, Architecture, Interior Design, Toy design, Lighting Design and more.

Students will participate in a variety of projects that aim to solve problems using design. Some of the design projects we will be doing in this class include:

  • A board game to teach kindness to Kindergarteners.
  • A video game character
  • A piece of furniture
  • The entrance to a theme park ride

Design is present in our day-to-day lives. This class will help students identify and discover how to use
their creativity to continue designing the world around them.

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