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Central Wisconsin School of Ballet Founder Waltraud G. Karkar established the CWSB in 1969, with the vision of creating the highest quality dance education facility in the region. After receiving extensive training in Europe and in the United States, she completed the Vaganova (Russian) Grades
with Madame Vilu Vecsey, Prima Ballerina, Budapest, Hungary. During the course of her career as a teacher, Madame Karkar studied with and was coached by a number of highly regarded dance teachers, schools and companies
including Joan Lawson of the Royal Ballet of England; Stone-Camryn School of Ballet in Chicago; and the Joffrey Ballet in New York.

In the September 1998 issue of DANCE MAGAZINE, she was featured in the"Great Starts Series" as one of the great American teachers and is the recipient of the first honorary degree from the Isadora Duncan International Institute to teach Isadora Duncan for Children. She also has been recognized on a local and regional basis, having been chosen one of the Wausau YWCA's Women of Vision; honored by the Chamber of Commerce Women in Business Owners with the Athena Award as Business Woman of the Year; and awarded the Wisconsin Dance Council's highest honor—the Career Distinction Award

Today the School boasts an Award Winning Summer Intensive program with guest Artists, that have included; former Kirov Ballet Star Irina Kolpakova current Ballet Mistress at American Ballet Theater; Vladilen Semynov, former
Ballet Master of the Vaganova School, and Derryl Yeager and Veronica Yeager of Odyssey Dance Theater. We have also welcomed guests from the Milwaukee Ballet, Hamburg, Boston Ballet, Royal Ballet of England and Bolshoi Ballet.
Each year over 150 Central Wisconsin School of Ballet School students and community members delight in the opportunity to participate in CWSB's The Nutcracker, declared in Newsweek Magazine as "...one of the Nation's nine most notable Nutcrackers; cited as "...the most enchanting... by Midwest Express Airlines Magazine; and pronounced "A Nutcracker to Remember in Wisconsin Trails, Great Weekend Adventures. The School's resident ballet company,
Wausau Dance Theatre, provides students with opportunities to apprentice with a professional organization. The company's presence also provides a valuable firsthand education for all students in the ultimate practical
application of their weekly lessons. In 2004, we embarked on our first international tour to Germany at the invitation of Moritz Landgraf Von Hessen. CWSB students, WDT member and guests performed for the Darmstadter Residenz Festspiele in Darmstadt as well as the Schloss Fasanerie Barock-Castle in Eichenzell - Fulda.

In our 4th decade, we are committed to providing students with a strong foundation in classical technique; instilling a commitment to the art form; and striving to elicit a joy of dancing.

CWSB distinguished students and graduates include:

Many of our students continue their academic studies at the nation's top colleges and universities.