South Shore Dance Alliance

our story and mission

South Shore Dance Alliance (SSDA), a 501(c)3 organization, is a premiere performing company and dance studio in Northwest Indiana and home to award-winning dancers, instructors, and choreographer. The organization was founded by Larry Brewer, SSDA’s executive director, in 2008. He built SSDA on principles of strong work ethic, outstanding discipline, technical expertise, and a love and passion for dance that is embraced by students, performers, and audiences alike. 

It was also founded on the premise

that no aspiring dancer shall be denied access to training due to lack of

financial resources.

From 2008 until 2012, SSDA studios were located in the old Miller School building (pictured above) in Gary's Miller neighborhood. SSDA moved to the Franklin Center in Griffith, Indiana in fall of 2012. Photos: Christopher Smith


The South Shore Dance Alliance school and studios are located at 201 N.Griffith Blvd., Griffith, IN 46319. The SSDA school and studio offers classes in ballet, jazz, modern, tap, and pointe.

Since SSDA's inception, dancers have gone on to study and perform with well known choreographers and companies such as: the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, The Juilliard School, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Debbie Allen Academy, Deeply Rooted Productions, Thodos Dance Chicago, Ballet Chicago, Dance Theater of Harlem, and more.


SSDA's pre-professional transitional dance company is designed to encourage the artistic development of dancers ages 8 and up who are seriously considering a career or further study in dance. Dancing with SSDA as a company member, dancers receive real-world performance experience and scholarship opportunities.


SSDA company members get opportunities to perform at venues in Chicago and northwest Indiana. They gain poise, confidence,  and experience while learning the value of giving back as in this recent performance for one of our  partner organizations, LOK Wishing Tree Foundation.  Photos: James Clemenson

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Larry Brewer

219.614.5458 Cell

219.513.9368 Office


Jessica Tenbusch

219.513.9368 Office

901.489.9949 Cell 


View Bios

Larry Brewer

Executive Director

Ellen Szarleta

Vice President

Liz Rotatori



Teshezia M. George, MPA

Peggy Glennie

Briana Robinson

Nancy Niequist Schoon

Jessica Tenbusch


Advisors to the Board

Roger Jeffrey

Martha C. Bohn

Nina Turner

Eric Dean Spruth 

CO-Artistic Director

Kacie Noel Garland

CO-Artistic Director

Renaldo Maurice Gardner

Assistant School Director;


Briana Robinson


Nancy Niequist Schoon

219.395.6226 Cell  




Jessica Tenbusch


Modern / COntemporary

Aquanita Yancey 

Joshua L. Ishmon


South Shore Dance Alliance