Our Staff

  • An experienced staff with over 80 years combined experience. Let us bring your skills to the next level.

  • The Studio 665 staff is made up of friendly, fun and experienced dance instructors who know what it takes to perform and feel confident in your dancing shoes. Whether you’re looking to learn to how to dance for a special event, enrich your life with the culture of dance or just pick up a new skill, we’ll be able to lead you to success!

  • Ashan Samarasinghe

    Owner and Head Instructor

    Ashan, a Standard champion in Australia and New Zealand, is a seasoned and accomplished instructor and competitor. He trained and taught Australian National champions at the prestigious Dancespace 383 of Wollongong, Australia and joined the Studio 665 staff in January 2014.  Over the years, Ashan has honed his skills as a fierce competitor with many accomplishments such as, 4 times New Zealand national champion that includes an open to the world title. In the recent years, he has won over 25 regional championships as well as being placed in the top 3 at Australian regional championships. Additionally, Ashan founded a not-for-profit organization in New Zealand called “Boost It Productions” which offers underprivileged dancers the opportunity to train with world class dance instructors.  This organization also provides scholarships for dancers to attend dance competitions and events at reduced costs. Ashan specializes in working with beginners as well as competitive standard dancers to reach new levels of excellence.  If Standard is his first love, Argentine Tango is not far behind!

  • Eleanor Van Der Zwan

    Head Instructor

    Eleanor Van Der Zwan is a professional Ballroom dancer from New Zealand. She has trained under some of the most esteemed coaches in the world including Alan and Donna Shingler at the renowned Dancespace 383 in Wollongong, Australia. Eleanor is a New Zealand Open to the World Champion, South Pacific Vice Champion, and has coached several Australian, South Pacific, and American champions and finalists. This past February, Eleanor earned the title of Top Female Teacher and 3rd Place Top Teacher Overall at the Eastern United States Dancesport Championships.

  • Soumaya MaRose

    Eastern Dance (Belly Dance) Instructor

    Since arriving in Boston in January 2014, she has dedicated her life to dance. In June 2015 Soumaya has won the 2nd place in the folk dance competition at Rakass Istanbul International Festival. She currently performs and plays music with Atlas Soul (North African music), Club Mediteranee (Arabic and Balkan music) and gives solo performances by Raqs Sharki and Moroccan folk dance at weddings and events around New England. She has taught classes, workshops, and hosted discussions throughout New England on Moroccan dance styles, Raks Sharqi, and Arabic culture. Soumaya regularly performs at the Boston area and travels to New York to teach and perform at workshops. One of her main partners is Boujemaa Razgui, a versatile musician with whom she has thought collaborated and produced for the first time in Boston.

    We are proud to have Soumaya as part of the Studio 665 Family

  • Susan Desmarais

    Yoga Instructor

    Susan Desmarais started practicing yoga in 1981. She took her first teacher training in the Sivananda tradition in 2000 and began teaching in 2001 in Toronto and later in Rome, Italy. Her teaching style has developed from years of training under numerous Iyengar teachers of the craft. Her classes heavily emphasize alignment and therapeutics.  By using props in her classes, Susan gives students a clear understanding of energetic use of the body. Her aim is to have each individual come away from class feeling integrated, invigorated and replenished from their practice. Susan coaches individuals on how to balance their health at an optimal level.  She also teaches a “Yoga for Hormone Balance” series twice a year in the Boston area.

    We are proud to have Susan as part of the Studio 665 Family


  • Charisse Nocera


    Charisse Nocera began dancing at Studio 665 when she was 3 years old. She vividly remembers her parents, Mark and Dawna Nocera, twirling her around the room to all kinds of ballroom music. This early exposure to music and dance started her on a passionate journey in competitive Ballroom and Latin dancing. She is currently an open level dancer specializing in American Rhythm. In 2017, she was crowned the NDCA Open to the World Amateur American Rhythm Champion with her partner Aniket Gad. Charisse loves teaching and watching her students grow and improve their dancing. She is currently studying Piano Performance at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

    We are proud to have Soumaya as part of the Studio 665 Family

  • Mark Nocera


    Mark Nocera is a World Class Adjudicator with the National Dance Council of America and the World Dancesport Council. He is an organizer of the Eastern United States Dancesport Championships held in Boston each February and the Massachusetts Dancesport Challenge held in Nahant each August. He is a former North American Champion, United States Vice-Champion, and Semi-Finalist at the World 10 Dance Championships, and he has performed and taught on network and cable television. He is a National Examiner for DVIDA and has served as the head coach of the Tufts Ballroom Dance Team for over 16 years. He is currently a co-head coach of the UMass Lowell, and TUFTS Ballroom Dance Teams.

    We are proud to have Soumaya as part of the Studio 665 Family

  • Kim Vanaman Headshot 2014

  • Kim Vanaman


    Kim is an Independent Dance Professional and Hustle specialist with extensive credits at all national Hustle events. Her expertise in technique and styling, as well as her warm, positive teaching style places her in demand as an instructor, choreographer, performer and judge. She continues to be a major force for keeping Hustle happening in the New England area. In addition, she is trained in American Style Ballroom Dance with an extensive focus on East Coast Swing, Jazz and Tap dancing. Kim has been teaching at Studio 665 for 6 years. In addition to numerous other awards, Kim most recently received The Arte Phillips Lifetime Achievement Award 2012.

    We are proud to have Soumaya as part of the Studio 665 Family

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  • Jennifer Bettano

    Office Assistant

    Jennifer has been a student of ballroom dance at Studio 665 for over six years.  She is a Gold-level dancer, having competed successfully in her favorite style, Latin, across New England and Canada. When not dancing, Jenn works at the Sports Club LA, Boston. Her passions are cooking and painting.

    We are proud to have Soumaya as part of the Studio 665 Family