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OCEANWAY SCHOOL OF DANCE & PERFORMING ARTS

Oceanway School of Dance & Performing Arts! 

Owner / Director

 Oceanway School of Dance & Performing Arts was founded by Tara Foxworth, a native of Jacksonville, Florida. Tara began her dance training at age five. Her training continued in high-school at Douglas Anderson School of the Arts and in college at Florida State College at Jacksonville and Jacksonville University. She earned an Associate of Arts degree in theatre, a Bachelor of Arts in Dance Education and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. She studied under famous dance artists such as Arthur Duncan (tap dancer on the Lawrence Welk show), Frank Hatchett at the Broadway Dance Center, members of the Martha Graham Dance Company, Bill Evans, and the Garth Fagan dance company in New York.


Tara held a certification as dance instructor for the state of Florida and directed the dance department at Lake Forest School of the Visual and Performing Arts for six years. At Lake Forest she trained dancers for the Lavilla School of the Arts dance program, choreographed and co-directed musical theater productions such as Beauty and the Beast and shared her love for dancing and drama on a daily basis. She has taken the Lake Forest Dance Company and her Oceanway Dance Company to Manhattan, New York where they studied dance at the Broadway Dance Center, toured the city and saw Broadway Shows such as The Lion King on Broadway.


Tara has taught various styles of dancing throughout the Jacksonville area for over 30 years at performing arts schools, dance studios, and cheerleading camps. She has taught for and served as camp coordinator for the Cathedral Arts Project, a non-profit organization bringing the arts to under privileged children throughout Jacksonville, which she is proud to be a part of.


Students of Oceanway School of Dance have been title award winning dancers at regional and national competitions, graduated from University of Florida with a degree in dance, ran dance programs in the community, attended Lavilla School of the Arts and Douglas Anderson School of the Arts as dance majors, performed in the Community Nutcracker and the Florida Ballet Nutcracker, auditioned into the Bolishoi summer intensives and more!


Tara has also been a featured extra in TV shows such as Point Man, in the movie Recount and has done voiceovers for WJCT as well as served as an auctioneer for the WJCT fundraiser. She has also played a ghost in the documentary Ghosts of North East Florida. Tara has performed in community productions at Theater Jacksonville and was a Theater major at FCCJ where she was a recipient of a full theater grant. 


Tara founded Oceanway School of Dance & Performing Arts so she can continue to share her passion and love for dancing and the arts! She looks forward to serving the community and mentoring students along the way.

Heather Zier 

Heather Zier comes to us from Worcester, Massachusetts. She started dancing at the age of 3 and has never stopped. Heather was a part of the Worcester Public Schools Fine Arts Track Elementary through High School with a focus in Dance. This program was lead by Dance Teacher Magazines 2014 Award Winning Joan Sheary. Growing up in the North East Heather took regular trips to take classes as STEPS and Broadway Dance Center as a child. She decided to stay in Jacksonville after her commencement from Jacksonville University in April of 2005. She graduated with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dance Performance. Heather has a strong background in classical jazz dance. She has studied with founders Frank Hatchett, Joe Tremaine and Gus Giordano. Heather has also worked with other instructors such as Joe Lantarie, Susie Taylor, SLAM, Dana Michaels, Missy Ponder-Reston, Carrie Martin- Coble, Christina Teague- Mann, Carrie Houser, and more. She has attended the World Jazz Dance Congress in Washington D.C., as well as the American College Dance Festival in Miami, FL While attending Jacksonville University, Heather taught at Bean School of Dance in Fernandina Beach under the guidance and mentorship of Missy Ponder Reston. She has worked at Mandarin High School both in the main office as well as Coach for the Magic’s Dance Team. While leading the Magic’s her team attended UDA where Heather became a certified Dance Team Coach by the Universal Dance Association in 2006. She continues annually working with Jacksonville’s finest teaching as a guest instructor at LaVilla Middle School of the Art’s and there LaVilla Jaxilla Convention. She has also been a guest choreographer for Bishop Kenny’s High School Dance Team. Heather has been on Pageant Panels for both Miss. Providence High as well as Miss. Mandarin High She has been an instructor for Dancemania as well as Dansations Performing Arts located here in Jacksonville. Heather’s trained in a wide multitude of dance genres such as Ballet, Tap, Musical Theatre, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Creative Classes, Modern as well as Improvisation. Not only does Heather dance but she is also a Triple threat singing and acting as well. She has taken part in a wide variety of plays and musicals, such as; Anton in Show Business, Impassioned Embraces, A Chorus Line, South Pacific, Guys and Dolls, The Wizard of Oz, Oliver, Peter Pan, Cinderella, Leader of the Pack and Barnum. She is a proud member of the Theatre Fraternity Alpha Psi Omega since 2002.

Erica Wehrle

Erica Wehrle was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. She started dancing at three years old and started competing at age eight. She trained at the award winning Prodigy Dance and Performing Arts Centre and continued dancing at the collegiate level at Texas Tech University. She received her bachelor of science in kinesiology and double minored in dance and forensic science.

During her time at Texas Tech their squads earned 3 national championships in the jazz and pom division. Her senior year she competed as part of the US National Jazz Team and won a gold medal.

After graduation Erica relocated to Jacksonville, FL and is currently a Jacksonville Jaguar Cheerleader. We are beyo

Tracy Mecom

Tracy began dancing at the age of three in Seminole, FL at Seminole School of Dance Arts under the direction of Suze Helms, where she studied until moving to Jacksonville at the age of ten. She then began classes at The World of Dance under the direction of Linda Surrency, where she continued her training in all types of dance, and was the first student in the studio to be accepted into Douglas Anderson School of the Arts. She began teaching at The World of Dance at the age of fifteen, where she also performed and competed as a soloist. Graduating from Douglas Anderson (with Mrs. Tara!) and then opened her own studio, Hilliard School of Dance in 2007, which she closed at the end of 2011. She has taught many different ages and styles of dance, and loves each of her students dearly. She was thrilled to join the staff at Oceanway School of Dance in 2016.

Emma Wicker


Emma is a graduate of Douglas Anderson School of the Arts.  At DA she majored in dance. Before DA she attended Lavilla School of the Arts as a dance major in middle school. She began her dance training at age 2 with Ms. Tara. She was an Oceanway Company Member for several years.  As a member of the Oceanway Dance Company she performed at Disney, Universal Studios and all around Jacksonville. She has competed in dance competitions and is an award winning choreographer! The first dance she choreographed at age 14 won a choreography award at Fluid Dance Competition. It was the only choreography award won at the competition! Emma has performed different roles in the Community Nutcracker since she was 8. She has a passion and love for dancing that is evident is her choreography and talent. She has inspired many dancers over the years. We are so excited to have her teach at Oceanway School of Dance!