TATIP Anthology


Jessica Mortellaro, Theatre Artist

Originally from Long Island, NY, Jessica began acting at the age of seven and has been working in the theater ever since. The arts were an integral part of her development as a child, and becoming a teaching artist has allowed her to share that impact with her students. As a professional actress, Jessica has performed in many plays and musicals here in NYC and regionally. Over the last few years she has become very involved in the Hamptons theater community performing often at The Bay Street Theater, Guild Hall, and the Parish Art Museum.

She is the co-founder of Speck of Light Productions. Last year Speck of Light produced the play THIS WIDE NIGHT by Chloe Moss in East Hampton. The play follows two women who are recently released from prison and facing the challenges of life on the outside. Jessica also performed in this two hander alongside her producing partner Chloe Dirksen. She received a BFA in Acting from Syracuse University, and has also studied at Shakespeare’s Globe Theater, as well as American Conservatory Theater in San Fransisco. As a teaching artist, Jessica currently works for Broadway Bound Kids teaching musical theater in after school programs, and Chess at Three, teaching early childhood chess both privately and in schools. 


Jessica is so thrilled to have had the opportunity to participate in TATIP this year, and to be a part of the Community-Word Project family. As an advanced track student, Jessica interned at the PS 279 residency with a 4th grade class in the Bronx. Her mentors are Teaching Artists Mary Cinadr (writing) and Scott Lily (theatre arts). She had the opportunity to present her mock lesson with fellow teaching artist Katy Walker-Mejia which explored hysteria and stereotypes through the lens of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. Jessica was also very inspired by all the seminar workshops with incredible organizations such as National Dance Institute, Wingspan, Opening Act, Carnegie Hall, and more! This year with TATIP has been an incredible journey that has opened so many doors and provided the tools to thrive as a teaching artist in NYC.

Most Memorable TATIP Moment: 

“One major highlight of the program was the seminar with Patti and Karla on Teaching for Social Justice. They so beautifully and seamlessly demonstrated how a powerful societal issue can open us up to our own unique creative voice. Their lesson was impeccably scaffolded and at the end of the day all of the teaching artists in the room shared the work they had created. We were all moved to tears. It was a very impactful day.” 

Find out more about Jessica here:

Check out Jessica’s Lesson Plan she created with her partner Katy Walker-Mejia and the Lesson Plan she presented in class!

Interested in TATIP? Find out more about our 2017-18 Program!

See more of our 2016-17 Graduates in the 2017 TATIP Anthology!