In this episode, I speak with Jessica Irons, founder and Artistic Director of Theater O, an independent theater school for kids in Ossining New York. She discusses the struggles of finding her purpose and then serving that purpose during a pandemic. She gives us the perspective of an artist and educator with the daunting task of trying to keep kids connected to their creative spirit while remaining safe.
Jessica, an Ossining resident, and sits on the boards of the Ossining Arts Project (The Village Art Committee) and Bethany Arts Community. She sat on the Board of Ossining MATTERS for 6 years and was president for 2. For 10 years she was the Artistic Director of the award-winning , NYC based Andhow ! Theater Company where she fostered new plays from a seed of an idea through to full productions. She directed Off & Off Off-Broadway at the Flea, The Ohio, HERE Arts Center, 78th Street Theater Lab, The Connelly Theater, Dixon Place, The Blue Heron Arts Center, The Ontological at St. Mark's Church in the Bowery New Georges and adobe theatre company.
She was the Associate Artistic Director of adobe theatre company and the Artistic Associate at Adirondack Theater Festival. As an educator she has directed/taught in Newark NJ, Redhook, Brooklyn, for the 52nd Street Project in Manhattan, Allan Stevenson, Fordham University, the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Westchester and elsewhere throughout the tri-state area. She was the original therapeutic arts director at Children of Promise, NYC in Bedford Stuyvesant, where she developed and implemented therapeutic art & theater curricula for children of incarcerated parents. Jessica studied theater at Skidmore College (BA) and Creative Arts Therapy at the New School.
Thanks so much for joining me today for A Therapist Takes Her Own Advice. If you connected with what you heard here, and you want to work with me, go to my website, rebekahshackney.com and send a message through my contact page. And if you have enjoyed what you’ve heard here, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts.