About Southwest School of Dance

In 1983, Charlotte Wendel opened Southwest School of Dance in Marshall, MN. 2016 marked her 38th year of teaching dance and her 33rd year at Southwest School of Dance. During her professional career, Ms. Wendel has received several choreography awards and her dancers have won many national championships and special awards. Many of her dancers have gone on to professional careers in the world of dance. In 1993, her Children's Ensemble performed in Russia, Estonia, and Latvia. They were invited to perform at the 'Oktyabrsky' or October Hall in St. Petersburg, which is considered a 'high honor'. In 2000, her dancers were invited by the Mexican government to take part in the World Dance Conference in Cancun, Mexico. Her dancers have performed at Disney World in Orlando, Florida in 1999 and 2002, and at the 1998 Atlanta Olympics, both by special invitation.

In 2016, Southwest School of Dance was purchased by Larvita LeGrand McFarquhar. Larvita is a former SWSD student, and went on in her career to act and dance in professional musical theater productions and was a scholarship student with Gus Giordano. She has been trained in gymnastics and has worked along side the USA National Olympic Coaches Marta Karolyi, Valero Liukin, as part of the TOPSĀ Program (Talent Opportunity Program).