About

Northwest Dance Studio was founded in 2005 with the adjoining Northwest Church donating the space and financial support to get the studio off the ground. Founder and director Sarah Swindell brings her more than 15 years of professional dance experience to give the studio’s students, mostly children and teens, the opportunity to learn multiple forms of dance and perform on a stage – an opportunity many would otherwise miss during childhood. Beyond teaching technique in the realms of ballet, jazz, hip hop, contemporary, pilates, tumbling and aerial dance, the studio’s focus is on instilling confidence, integrity and positive self image in its students that they can use in everyday life to achieve their dreams.

Northwest Dance Studio Staff

Sarah Swindell, Director

Sarah Swindell started her training at Orlando Ballet, formerly known as Southern Ballet Theater. At the age of 15, she was the youngest employee hired on staff and invited into the company. Her ballet performances with SBT include The Nutcracker, The Three Musketeers, Cinderella, Dracula, Romeo & Juliet, and A Midsummer's Night Dream. She also traveled with the company. She then went on to teach and dance at Harwood Watson Dance Studios. In 2005 she started Northwest Dance Studio and also began developing her own team of performance dancers, the Northwest Dance Company.

Mollie Chang

Mollie Chang

Mollie started her dance training at FLEX Dance Studio in Sarasota, Florida. There she was trained in ballet, jazz, modern, and tap. While at FLEX, she danced in the 25th Super Bowl Half Time Show in Tampa. When she moved to Orlando, she danced as a parade performer with Walt Disney World. She is now a member of the Northwest Dance Company and an instructor in several dance genres at Northwest Dance Studio including Jazz, and is thrilled not only to be able to continue to pursue her passion of dancing, but to affect others lives in a positive way.

Melissa Zeise

Melissa Zeise

Melissa began her training at Northwest Dance studio at the age of 12. She performed with the studios in multiple productions and also traveled with the Company to Peru. At 14 years old Melissa began training at Elizabeth Parsons School of Dance. The following year she began studying with Central Florida Ballet during which she performing in two recitals and participated in two 4-week long summer dance camps. In 2012 Melissa began dancing with Harwood-Watson Dance Studios and was asked to perform in the studio's winter show "Holiday Tapas" as a guest artist. Melissa assists Sarah Swindell in Aerial silk and lyra, Pilates, Creative Movement, Primary 1, Hip Hop and Ballet classes.