dance academy

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Sara Jean

Owner/ Director

Sara Jean has been planning to open her own dance studio since she was a child. She started dancing at 2 and a half attending North East Dance Academy. She then joined the competitive team at Michelle Cody’s Dance Center, while also being on Smithtown West’s competition kickline and pom teams. Sara Jean attended Sacred Heart University and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Business and a minor is human resources/dance education. While attending SHU she was on the Division 1 Nationally ranked dance team for 4 years. During this time she interned at Arthur Murray.

After graduating college Sara Jean was an instructor and choreographer at Jan Martin in East Northport, Jan Martin in Plainview and Elegant Dance studio in Medford. She also ran a private dance school from a single student studio. On top of SJDC she currently is the gymnastics competition floor choreographer at FLIPS.

Sara Jean believes that dance is so much more choreography and a stage. She has learned so much from the dance studio being her second home. This is a place where bonds are made, lifelong friends are found and hard work is rewarded. She is thankful to be living out her dream and will bring passion and dedication to this studio so that her students mature and thrive in a safe environment.

Mackenzie Levenberg


Mackenzie spent the past two years as a Knicks City dancer. She has also recently been a dancer for T-pain, Madison Beer, Ashanti, Mase, Wyclef, Bryant Myers, Fat Joe and more at Madison Square Garden. Mackenzie has been on MTV and shines in the spotlight. She grew up in Happauge and is now finishing her B.S. in Health Science at Farmingdale State College.

Jillian Lofaso


Jillian is a graduate of Smithtown West and studied Child Study at St. Joseph’s College. Jillian is a teacher by day and a dancer by night. She danced for over 10 years at Michelle Cody’s Dance Center where she met Miss Sara Jean. Jillian danced competitively as well as taught at her studio for three years after she graduated. She has a passion for dance, and for teaching dance. She made her best memories and met some of her best friends dancing. She is thankful to be a part of the SJDC where she can see the new generation of dancers get to have to same experiences.

Melanie Siegelson


Melanie Siegelson started dance when she was 5. She continued throughout high school and also became a member of the Smithtown West Varsity kickline Team and competed at Nationals, placing 1st two years in a row. She went off to Cortland and was a member of the college kickline team. 

Maria Dougherty


Maria has been dancing for 18 years. She started at the age of 3 and fell in love with the art immediately. After dancing throughout high school she graduated and went to study at the University of New Haven in West Haven, CT. She was the lead choreographer for their 5678 dance team and also got involved in other sports like rugby. She has been studying to get her personal training certification. Maria says “I have an incredible passion for dance and physical activity. I am so excited to be a part of Sara Jean Dance Company.” 

Julia Kearns


Julia Kearns is a 22 year old from Lake Grove, New York. Julia has been dancing/competing for most of her life. She has been through years of training from amazing choreographers throughout the dance industry. Julia has several years of experience with instructing dance classes of all styles and ages at Kings Park Dance Center. Julia attended Farmingdale State College where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. Julia is beyond excited to meet and supply all of her dance knowledge to the students of Sara Jean Dance Company.

Madison Puglisi


Madison is a graduate of Centereach High School and currently is attending Stony Brook University. She has danced at Dream Believe Achieve dance studio for 12 years and Stagedoor Dance Studio for 3. Madison spent 4 years on the Varsity kickline team and is a choreographer for the town of Patchogue.

Danielle Chiavola


Danielle Chiavola, born and raised in Holbrook, New York, grew up in the world of competitive dance. She began dancing at a studio at the age of three, where she soon began competing. She has been trained in a variety of styles including Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary, Hip-Hop and Musical Theater. During her time in competitive studio dance, Danielle had the opportunity to work with credited choreographers from around the country. Later she started assisting at the studio, and soon teaching her own classes. She began traveling nationally for competitions and conventions and earning numerous scholarships and both local and national titles. Some places Danielle has performed include Connecticut, New Jersey, Florida, and Las Vegas. Beginning in high school, in addition to dancing at a studio, she started competing for her school dance team, the Sachem East Varsity Arrowettes, where she performed at Scholastic Competition, and NDA Nationals in Orlando. During her high school dance career, their team earned three National Titles in Varsity Jazz and Hip-Hop. Upon finishing high school, Danielle attended Sacred Heart University, in Fairfield Connecticut, where she studied Health Science, concentrating in Public Health and minoring in Global Health and Psychology. During her time in college, she was a member of the nationally ranked Division I dance team. This gave her the opportunity to continue pursuing her passion for dance, and performing. During her time on the team, she made public appearances, choreographed routines, and performed at football games and basketball games throughout the school year. She became a member of the competitive team, and competed at NDA Collegiate Nationals, in Daytona Florida, as well.

Meaghan Schnell


Meaghan has been dancing since the age of 3 and is so excited to join the SJDC family. Meaghan spent 15 years as a dancer with Michelle Cody’s Dance Center in Smithtown, 9 of which were spent on the competition team. She has experience in the styles of tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical and hip hop. Once graduating high school, she spent 3 years teachings kids between the ages of 2-18 at MCDC while earning her bachelors degree at Stony Brook University. Meaghan was also a member of the Kings Park Varsity Royalette kickline team in high school. Meaghan is currently an Account Manager at a tech company in Melville.

Jainee Gabrielsen


Jainee has been dancing since she was 3 years old. She danced at Michelle Cody’s Dance Center in Smithtown during this time and started to dance competitively at age 8. While dancing Jainee was also a competitive track athlete and coached young kids for many years in the various areas of track and field. 

Jainee attended Hofstra University where she received her BBA in Marketing with a minor in Information Systems and Business Analytics. She went on to receive her Masters with distinction in Marketing Research and Analytics. Jainee is going on to pursue her MBA to gain managerial skills that will only enhance her professional repertoire. While attending Hofstra University Jainee was on Club Lacrosse and the Club Dance Team. 

Carly Herbert


Carly is a full time student at Stony Brook University where she is majoring in health science. She is a member of the stony brook dance team and has been dancing for 16 years and competition for 5. On top of that she was also a competitive gymnast for 15 years. Her favorite styles are contemporary and jazz but she has trained in lyrical, open, character, ballet, pom and hip hop.

Sarah Gerdvi


Sarah is currently a full time student at Adelphi University where my major is exercise science and my minor is dance. She is a member of Adelphi’s dance team. Her passion for dance started when she was 3. She’s been a competitive dancer for 13 years and a competitive gymnast for 10 years. Sarah’s favorite style of dance is contemporary but have trained in jazz, tap, lyrical, acro, character, ballet, pointe and hip hop.

Giovanna Buglione


Giovanna has been dancing for 14 years. She attended East Coast Artist Dance Center and danced competitively for most of her life. She is currently a student at St Joseph’s College and is a member of the dance team. She is very dedicated and passionate about all styles of dance and is looking forward to sharing her love with each and every student.

Caitlin Soriano


Caitlin has been dancing since she was 4 years old. She was a competitive dancer for 14 years and has competed in New York City as well as Massachusetts. Caitlin was a member of Cortland DanceWorks, the hip hop team at SUNY Cortland, for 3 years. Caitlin has always had a passion for teaching since she was little. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Adolescent Education of Mathematics from SUNY Cortland. Caitlin is currently a middle and high school math teacher and tutor. Her favorite styles are jazz and hip hop. She is so excited to be a part of the SJDC family

Brittney Skarulis

Off Ice/ Grounded Skate Instructor

Brittney Skarulis has been an ice skater and dancer her whole life. She is currently and has been a coach at the Rinx in Smithtown.

Susan Diblasio

Front Desk Receptionist

Susan has been a dance mom for 18 years. She loves the dance world and is excited to apart of SJDC from day one.