Carolina Dance Academy, Inc.

FIrst Premier Dance Studio, Durham, NC
The Original Carolina Dance Academy of NC

" a studio where you are family"


With years of experience in the dance world, we are your number one choice. We strive to provide you with the absolute best service without any compromises.  The studio where "Every dancer is a star."

When we first started out, Ms. Johnna's passion for dance and desire to make an impact has kept her in the business for over 40 years. Students that come to the studio are like family and instructed by a certified Dance Master teacher and assistants.
We are happy to be recognized as one of the Most Loved Studios in the Durham/Raleigh/triangle area and the Host studio for the Great Russian Nutcracker Ballet.

CDA offers the best in quality dance education. Creativity and the love of dance is encouraged and welcome at any level. Teaching is done with a personal touch and communication between parents, students and teacher is encouraged. 
Combination classes are taught and are the basis for all types of dances.
CDA instructs each student with dance terminology, whether it is in ballet class, jazz or tap. This education gives each student the tools and knowledge that will stay with them forever. Each student becomes more confident, has personal self-esteem and promotes their talent in dance. They also make lasting friendships with other young girls by dancing and performing together. "Great Dancers are not great because of their technique. They are great because of their passion."

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Studio News & Announcements

Fall Registration for 2022- 2023 is Ongoing!! Come and register. ** Now offering til Nov. 23rd..FREE dance bag, leotard and tights for any New student!! CONGRATULATIONS! to Francesca Forrester on being selected to perform in the Russian Nutcracker Ballet this Dec in the part of one of the Spanish girls. She auditioned for the part and was picked among many other girls her age. We are proud of you!!! **Studio is Open for Rental of Space. Classes for Yoga, Rumba, Ballroom. If interested, complete the Contact section. Studio offers Combination Classes. Now offering: Hip hop and Classes for boys, all ages and Adult Jazz Classes. * Tuition includes: Registration, and Costume fee. (Recital fee is separate). Studio director participated as a judge for the Duke Dancing Devils Tryouts 2022 - 2023. Studio will be closed Oct. 31 - Halloween *Also accepting - New Payment option via Venmo. Ask at the studio. Due to rising costs of the theatre and production cost, beginning in Jan 2023, a separate recital fee of $50/per family will be collected. **Professional Costume Designer and Seamstress for the studio for all costume requests. Contact her on her Facebook page: "Designs by Patti". She can make arrangements to meet personally with you.

Class Information

Combination Classes Offered: Pre-school ballet & tap, Classical ballet & Pointe, Lyrical and interpretative dance, Tap, Jazz, and Hip hop. Contemporary and Combination classes. In addition, classes for boys, Adult jazz, Folk and ballroom classes. Private lessons are by appointment only. Solos: Student must be enrolled as a regular student and take the combination classes. Student must come to all classes. Solos are taught from Aug - Feb only. Fees for solos are separate from regular monthly tuition. Competitions: Students wanting to participate in yearly competitions, must come to class and take the combination classes. Fees for competitions are separate from monthly tuition. Annual Dance recital: All students participate in the annual dance recital. Costumes are ordered the beginning of the new year and all tuition needs to be paid before costumes can be ordered. Costumes cannot be returned once ordered. Dance Recital Fee: A separate dance recital fee of $55 will be collected, The studio offers a 10 month package payment plan that includes dance lessons, registration and costume fees. Discounts for more than one child in a family is offered at a family rate.


The studio participates in yearly dance competitions in the area. Students need to take the combination class in order to qualify. Special rehearsals are sometimes normal to prepare for the event. Pictures posted here are from past competitions.

  • 3101 Guess Rd, Durham, NC, USA
  • Suite E

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Johnna Forrester

Studio Owner, DIrector & CEO

Certified by Dance Masters of American, Inc. , NC Chapter 15. Ballet Teacher & Coordinator for the Great Russian Nutcracker performed at DPAC. Two Time - World Title Holder in Theatre Arts Division, Buenos Aires, Argentina 2008 and 2010 - Nassau, Bahamas Judge for numerous Dance competitions in NC area. 2022 - Judge for the Duke Dancing Devils Team.

Debbie Broadwell

Dance instructor, VP

Certified by Dance Masters of America, NC, Chapter 15. Taught at studio for over 20+ years.

Patti Carroll

Assistant Teacher/Seamstress/Costume Designer

She has taught dance for more than 20+ years. Created and led liturgical dance group while living in Miami, FL and Charlotte, NC. Experienced Seamstress and designer of costumes, evening gowns and any type of clothing. Performs alternations to costumes and clothing too. Owner of: " Designs by Patti". Holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in business administration.

Elizabeth Parry

Jazz DIrector/Teacher

Former Carolina Dance Graduate, Miss Talent USA Winner 2014. She is a graduate from UNC-Chapel Hill, Majoring in Early Childhood Education and has a master's in health and Fitness. She currently is a Kindergarten teacher at Durham Academy.

Becca Lee

Assistant Teacher

Former Carolina Dance Graduate and student for 7 years. Best Interview award in Miss Talent, USA competition. Just recently finished her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology.