Executive Director

Sarah Balda Dance InstructorSarah Balda, B.A. Dance Studies, MNA Masters of Nonprofit Administration

Sarah Balda holds a Masters in Nonprofit Administration from the University of Notre Dame and a B.A. in Dance Studies from the University of South Florida. Mrs. Sarah has trained with some of the country’s top dance educators and choreographers. Madame Gabriella Darvash, Gretchen Ward Warren (Penn. Ballet Theater & ABT), Gerri Houlihan, Michael Foley (Sean Curran), Alexandra Beller (Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company), John Parks (Alvin Ailey) and Lynn Wimmer are a few of her previous instructors. Mrs. Sarah has also had the privilege of taking master classes from company members of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Urban Bush Women, Parson Dance Company. The United State Embassy commissioned her choreography for the Splash Gala in Kazakhstan. She has worked as an artist in residency through the Brevard Cultural Alliance at Brevard County Public Schools and has solicited professional dancers from across the nation to teach master classes and residencies at Dance Arts Centre. Ms. Sarah is heavily involved with the nonprofit sector and the arts community. She has a strong desire to educate others on the art of dance and, she is dedicated to making dance accessible to our community’s youth regardless of one’s ability to pay.

Instructors

Catherine Alexander Dance InstructorSoozi Childers

Suzanne’s professional career began as a “baby ballerina” on CBS television’s “Jackie Gleason Show. She appeared on stages throughout Asia, South America, and Europe, before retiring to open a dance studio in the San Francisco Bay Area, with her mother Sabina, a highly regarded dance educator of young children. Suzanne’s 30+ years teaching dance includes serving as the ballet instructor for Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas. She is currently the owner of Choozi Entertainment, creators of the first ever aquatic spectacular at sea, as well as theatrical entertainments throughout the world. Suzanne was also a published writer for Dance Teacher Now, offering advice to young dancers wishing to pursue a career in the performing arts. She is currently the owner of Choozi Entertainment and Choozi by Design, where she directs, choreographs, and produces entertainments for the cruise industry, as well as theatres throughout the world. Soozi is excited to be returning to her passion, that is passing on the traditions of ballet instruction to a new generation of dancers. She believes ballet offers the soundest technique in which to support all other genres of dance. She is thrilled to be joining the DAC family!

Amanda Manis Dance InstructorAmanda Manis

Amanda Manis is a performer and educator born and raised on the Space Coast. She took lessons with Ms. Marty at Precision Dance and expanded her horizons as a performer with theater classes, gymnastics, and cheerleading. When Ms. Amanda went to college at the University of Florida she majored in History but joined Extreme Dance Company keeping her hand in the performance game. After college Ms. Amanda pursued performance as a profession. She has performed locally for the Historic Cocoa Village Playhouse, Titusville Playhouse, and the Henegar Center. She has also had the honor of performing in musicals and large scale productions on the West Coast of Florida and two tours with Feld Entertainment Disney Live! and Disney Jr. Live! shows one domestic and one international. Ms. Amanda has taught and choreographed at the Historic Cocoa Village Playhouse for the STARS of Tomorrow program, at the Henegar Center for Black Box and MainStage shows, and at Better Than Broadway Dance Studio. She assistant directed a studio production of the Little Mermaid in Tampa. She has volunteered with the Cocoa Police Department to teach a ballet class to underprivileged girls and loves nothing more than challenging her students to do more than they ever thought they could. When she isn’t performing or teaching Ms. Amanda works as a 911 dispatcher for a local agency.

Dorian Coney Dance InstructorDorian Coney

Sole180 is proud to present Dorian Coney. He is a young 23 year old dancer and entrepreneur. Dorian’s love for dance has brought him in front of hip hop greats that have helped form and shape his training; BDash, Fresh Redding, Amanda Grind, Alex Fetbroth, Stevo Jones, Shaun Evarista, Brian Puspos, Bam Martin, Lyle Beniga just to name a few. Dorian’s passion for dance led him to step out in faith and has been instrumental in helping him land multiple contracts with local schools and day cares teaching hip hop dance to young kids and teenagers around Brevard County. He has touched the lives of many as well as become a mentor for several youth in the community. Taking classes with Dorian will insure a great time full of fun all the while learning the art and discipline in dance. He is currently a member of the Sole180 Production company and can be found performing in our live shows and events.

Jessie Schneider Dance InstructorJessie Schneider

Ms. Jessie’s enthusiasm for dance began at the age of four taking classes at Dance Arts Centre. Under the exceptional instruction of Ms.Sarah, Jessie was a member of Dance Arts Centre’s company for 6 years and participated in numerous performances here in Brevard County. She continued her passion for dance moving to New York City following high school. Jessie danced at Marymount Manhattan College and graduated the pre-professional training program at Peridance Capezio Center- New Yorks Premiere Dance Center. Jessie has enjoyed numerous opportunities training with some of the most exceptional educators in the dance community. Cat Cogliandro (Catastrophe), Igal Perry (Artistic Director of Peridance Capezio Company), Milton Myers (Alvin Ailey), and Raphaelle Kessedjian (Martha Graham) are a few choreographers Jessie has worked with. She also has had the privilege of experiencing the gift of dance through her time spent immersed in other cultures by training and performing in Ecuador and in Florence, Italy. She has always had a strong desire to share her passion for dance, combined with her love for children. Ms. Jessie is exhilarated to be back teaching at Dance Arts Centre.

Avery Ward Dance InstructorAvery Ward

Avery Ward has been dancing for 13 years. This is her 8th year at DAC, and her 5th year in Company. She is currently a sophomore at Melbourne High School. Avery loves and has practiced many styles of dance including ballet, jazz, tap, pointe, modern, and musical theater. Her favorite dance style is tap, and she’s very excited to get to teach it this year! When Avery’s not dancing, she’s either baking or reading!

Emmaleigh Coman Dance InstructorEmmaleigh Coman

Emmaleigh has been dancing for 9 years at Dance Arts Centre. She’s been dancing with the DAC company for 6 years. She loves to help the studio when she can by volunteering. Emmaleigh is going into her junior year at Satellite High School while doing duel enrollment. She has danced many styles such as ballet, hip hop, jazz, modern, pointe, and musical theater. Emmaleigh’s other hobby outside of dance is drawing! She can’t wait to teach a class this year!

Abriella Mauldin Dance InstructorAbriella Mauldin

Abriella Mauldin began dancing at the age of 4, and has been a student at DAC for 12 years, 7 of which as a company member. With her foundations stemming from our best DAC instructors she has trained in ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, tap, lyrical and musical theater. She has volunteered countless hours cleaning studios, choreographing and cleaning routines, as well as performing various fundraisers throughout the community. She has worked with various professional companies each summer since 2018. In addition to dancing, Abriella attends West Shore Jr./Sr. High school as a senior, and is Early Admitting at Eastern Florida State College to work towards her AA. Additionally, she works as a Brevard County Ocean Rescue Lifeguard which consists of being CPR and EMR certified. She is excited to share her passion of dance with the youth of Brevard, taking into account each dancer’s individual goals and needs.

Lonyee Eng Social Media ManagerLonyee Eng

Lonyee Eng began dancing at the age of three and danced at DAC for seven years having positions as a student, assistant instructor, and tap instructor. She attended the University of Miami to obtain her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration double majoring in Marketing and Management with a minor in Dance. While at Miami, she held leadership positions such as being a Resident Assistant, Student Ambassador, and Public Relations Chair of multiple organizations including University of Miami: Dance Marathon. Now back in Melbourne, Lonyee works in business management at Northrop Grumman. She still has a deep love for dance and strong interest in photography, videography, and marketing. She is so excited to be able to share all DAC has to offer across all platforms.

Marty Mercado Substitute Dance InstructorMarty Mercado

Mercado brings more than 30 years of dance experience to Brevard County. Ms. Marty is a Florida Native born in Pinellas County where she began her training with Mrs. Agnus Phillips dance master for the Royal Ballet in England. Her training continued with superb training with teachers from the University of Utah, University of South Florida, American Ballet Theatre, Kirov School of Leningrad and Ballet Concerto Company of Cuba. Ms. Marty danced professionally with Florida West Ballet Company, Milwaukee Ballet, Joffery Ballet and Tampa Ballet. Ms. Marty has shared the stage with such wonderful dancers such as Martin Freedman of the Kirov School of Leningrad, Haydee Gutierrez of Cuba, Lauren Rouse of Joffery Ballet, Nobuyoski Nakajima of Tokyo City Ballet Company, Henry Hernandez of Southern Ballet and Orazio Messina of Teatro La Fenice, Venice Italy. Ms. Marty has worked as an Artist in Residence for Brevard Cultural Alliance and Very Special Arts of Florida. She has taught dance in the Brevard County Juvenile Detention Center, Space Coast Marine Institute, and Rainwater Girls Institute striving to bring a form of artistic expression to youth at risk. She has written dance curriculum for Arts for a Complete Education with the Florida Alliance for Arts Education and has served on the Florida Dance Association Board of Directors. Ms. Marty also was chosen to work with dance writing team for the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards for the Arts (NGSSS-Arts). Ms. Marty was the owner and Artistic Director of Precision Contemporary Dance in Brevard County for over 12 years. She produced original works at The King Center and The Henegar Center in Melbourne. She was also one of the co–curators for Robot Love.