body & soul is the answer
#1 Dance Studio in Worcester.
Ritmos dance studio
Welcome/Bienvenidos! Since being established in 2002, the Ritmos Academy mission has been to preserve Latin American culture through dance across the New England area. Ritmos dancers range in ages 4-20 learn both folkloric and modern styles of Latin dance from Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Columbia, and Cuba. Ritmos first opened its doors on 344 Chandler Street in Worcester, MA, under the direction of Hilda Ramirez.
In 2011, long-time student Masielle Paulino volunteered to continue the Ritmos’ mission, and in 2015 Ritmos relocated to 70 Webster St. Worcester, MA. Today, the growing Ritmos family aims to continue this mission. We educate others about Latino history as well as provide affordable dance instruction, numerous travel and performance opportunities all within a family-oriented atmosphere.
Learn from the best
Our Dance Experts
Director: Masielle “Massy” Paulino
Miss Paulino has always expressed a passion for working with youth creatively. Her journey with Dance began at age 13, where she trained in various styles including; Ballet, Flamenco, Latin Jazz, Modern, and Folkloric Latin dance. Since age 16, Ms. Paulino has independently instructed dance lessons and worked with children of all ages. After high school, she attended Dean College, where she majored in Dance and graduated in 2011 with her Associates in Dance Education before returning to Worcester, MA. Miss Massy has been a part of several dance companies, including Hispania Dance Company, Dean College’s Modern and Hip-hop company as well as Raices Latin Dance. Her vast teaching and performing experience resulted in taking on the role of Ritmos Academy director in 2011. In 2013, Ms. Paulino was recognized by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for Ritmos Academy’s Cultural Contribution to the city of Worcester, MA. In 2014 Miss Paulino graduated from Worcester State University with her Bachelor’s in Psychology.
In 2019, Ms. Paulino was awarded the Community Achievement Award by the Worcester Latino Dollars for Scholars Chapter. Ms. Paulino continues to direct, choreograph, fundraise, and manage Ritmos Academy as well as continue to pursue her educational and professional career. She currently works in the Nonprofit world and is working towards her MSW from Springfield College with a specialty in Dance/Movement Therapy. As of January 2020, Miss Paulino received recognition from the Mayor, State Senate, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and was awarded a Women-In-Action Entrepreneurial and Small Business award.
Ast. Director: David Vargas
Mr. Vargas began his dance journey in 2013 with local Worcester Company, Raices Latin Dance. His dance and performance experiences include the Connecticut Salsa Congress, Baltimore Salsa Congress, Boston Salsa Congress, and many more.
Today as Ritmos’ Assistant Director, Dave is both IT support and our teen/adult Salsa/Bachata instructor. Mr. Vargas provides quality dance instruction in a friendly manner and specializes in teaching proper dance etiquette. We are honored to have Mr. Vargas as part of the Ritmos team.
Cassandra “Cassie” Santana
Ms. Santana comes to us as an alumni student of the team. Cassie began her Ritmos journey in 2015, but that didn’t stop her from dancing at home or being a part of her high school cheer team before that. Although small in stature, she holds vast performance experience and is more than meets the eye. Ms. Santana assists in classes to help with scheduling, marketing, and local staffing performances.
Her patient, delicate and sensitive nature draws our young dancers to her and reinforces our family-oriented atmosphere. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and learning the in’s and out’s of the Ritmos program. We are fortunate to have her as part of the team and look forward to supporting her endeavors.
Janazia “Ms. J” Carter
Ms. J’s passion for dance began at the age of 2, when her mother registered her for dance classes. Ms. J was trained in Ballet, Jazz Tap, Contemporary and more at Paula Zawalich and Elite Academy of Dance of Worcester.
After competing in several national competitions with Hip-Hop, she realized it was her passion and decided to pursue it forward. Throughout her high school career, Ms. J was a part of The Boys & Girls Club of Worcester’s dance team In Da Zone. Today, Ms. J is the Ritmos Hip-Hop instructor, as the studio hopes to expand by providing several other dance genres.
What Our Clients Are Saying!
These are also all important life lessons. RJ has an extended family, his Ritmos family. Massy and Dave not only teach their students how to dance, they help them grow, support them through their ups and downs, and truly become part of your family. RJ would tell you that dance is EVERYTHING!
Karmaris adora a Massy y siempre le decía q quería ser como ella. Ritmos para ella es su familia y ama estar en el estudio compartir con sus compañeros y le gusta los retos en el baile. Gracias Massy/Dave por la estructura y disiplina q de una forma u otra le han enseñado a mis hijas y a todos los niños y jóvenes q han pasado por Ritmos Family.
I love watching them perform and seeing how much confidence they’ve gained throughout the years. They love making new friends and having the opportunity to travel to different cities and perform in front of different crowds. Massy and Dave do an excellent job teaching them and allowing them to be themselves. These kids never want to miss a class or an event. I will continue to be a proud Ritmos mom for years to come!