Northlight Education Department


Teaching Artists MaraStern_webMara Stern (Director of Education) has been a member of the Northlight education staff since serving as a counselor in our Senior Camp during the summer of 2008 and has served as Senior Camp Director for the past two summers. Mara has been a Teaching Artist with Northlight since 2011 working in our Season Access, Speak Up! and Northlight on Campus programs. Mara is also a Teaching Artist with Lookingglass where she has piloted several new programs on health and wellness, physical theatre and adaptation. Mara spent two years in Lookingglass’ box office as the Manager of Audience Services and as Group Sales Manager. She is a Teaching Artist with Steppenwolf in their pre- and post-show residency program and she works with Turning the Page, a non-profit dedicated to creating community in North Lawndale’s public schools. Mara is a director and producer in Chicago, working with EX-Pats, Jackalope, Pride Films and Plays, The Kinematics and The Hypocrites. Mara is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago and The British American Drama Academy in London.

Andrew Marikis(Education Associate) is an actor, teaching artist, and storyteller. As an actor he’s worked with Lifeline, Irish Theatre of Chicago, BoHo, Adventure Stage Chicago, and Filament Theatre. As a storyteller, Andrew tells true, personal tales all over Chicago & is the host and producer of Story Club South Side monthly. As a teaching artist, he’s the lead teaching artist with the ASC Trailblazers & teaches with Writers, Dream Big, and Adventure Stage Chicago.


Northlight Teaching Artists


JessicaAlldredge_web100x125Jessica Alldredge (Teaching Artist) is thrilled to teach for Northlight on Campus again! Jessica moved to Chicago from Birmingham, AL where she graduated with a B.A. in Theatre Performance from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. In Birmingham, she frequented the stage with Theatre UAB, the Birmingham Park Players, and the Bards of Birmingham as well as appearing in the film Awakened. Jessica founded the drama program at Creative Montessori School in Homewood, AL for preschool and elementary students and served as a mentor, actor and director for the Bards of Birmingham. In Chicago, Jessica’s acting work includes projects with CUBE Ensemble, Fury Theater, Dream Theater Company and Transcendent Ensemble Theatre Company. As a teaching artist, she has also worked with American Theater Company, Mudlark and the Viola Project, and is a member of the Teaching Artist Development Studio 2015 cohort through CCAP at Columbia. For Northlight, she has worked with awesome kids at Orrington, Middleton, Beidler and Gale schools, as well as summer camp.

Peter G. Andersen (Teaching Artist) is a graduate of Emerson College where he obtained his BFA in Acting.  Since then he has gone on to work for Steppenwolf Theatre Company as the Steppenwolf For Young Adults Apprentice and Multicultural Fellow.  As a teaching artist he has worked for Northlight, Actor’s Shakespeare Project, Company One, Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Shakespeare & Company.  He has also worked at TimeLine Theatre, Huntington Theatre Company, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and Yale Repertory Theatre as an assistant director.  As an actor Peter has performed professionally in Boston, The Berkshires, and Chicago. For more information visit his webpage at

Teaching Artist JazminCorona_webJazmín Corona
(Teaching Artist) is happy to be a part of this extraordinary team of teaching artists at Northlight Theatre. As a bilingual (Spanish/English) teaching artist, she’s worked with youth of all ages and backgrounds, teaching theatre, dance, and photography. In Chicago, she has worked with Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education (CAPE), ElevArte, American Theater Company, The Beverly Arts Center, Boom Troupe, The Viola Project, and Steppenwolf. In Cleveland, where Jazmín is originally from, she worked with Great Lakes Theater Festival and Cleveland Play House. As an actress, she’s had the pleasure of working with Steppenwolf, Chicago Dramatists, Free Street, First Folio, Teatro Luna, Goodman Theatre, Collaboraction, Urban Theater Company, Prop Theatre, Babes With Blades, and Adventure Stage. She has worked on such films as Dawn and The Southside Has Many Beauty Queens, both having been shown at the Chicago Latino Film Festival with the latter winning the Audience Choice Award for Best Short Film.

MattFarabee_webMatt Farabee (Teaching Artist) is an actor and teaching artist in Chicago. He works as a teaching artist for Northlight at Fairview South School directing their middle school plays. He also directed Seussical! The Musical with area students at Northlight. As an actor, Matt has worked with Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Court Theatre, Eclipse Theatre Company, Pavement Group, Steppenwolf, Route 66, Chicago Dramatists, Rivendell, and Theater Wit. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Theatre and Recreational Therapy. Matt is also a teaching artist and faculty member with the National High School Institute Cherubs Program at Northwestern University.

JasmineJordan_web100x125Jasmine Henri Jordan (Teaching Artist) graduated from Florida State University with a B.A. in Theatre and Humanities. In addition to teaching for Northlight, she has also taught for Mudlark Theater, the Viola Project, and for American Theater’s Mosaic program. Jasmine was introduced to Northlight when she served as education intern. She recently became Victory Gardens Theater’s Audience Development Manager. Jasmine is a deviser, dramaturg, and performance artist around the city. For more info, check out her website


TuesdaiPerry_webTuesdai B. Perry (Teaching Artist) is thrilled to be joining Northlight’s education team!  She recently completed Northlight’s education apprenticeship with the Speak Up! and Northlight on Campus programs. She holds a degree in Directing and Creative Writing from Western Illinois University. Tuesdai also works with Northbrook Park District, Northbrook Theatre, Northbrook Theatre Junior Company, and Northbrook Community Theatre as a teacher, choreographer, performer, director, and stage manager with ages 5 and up. Additionally, she teaches with Oak Lawn Park District and has worked with Beverly Theatre Guild, Chicago’s oldest community theatre.

WillQuam_webWill Quam (Teaching Artist) joined Northlight in 2012 as a Senior Camp counselor, and has since served as the Senior Camp Assistant Director in 2014 and 2015, and Director in 2016. During the school year, Will has taught with Northlight’s Northlight on Campus and Speak Up! programs in Evanston, Skokie, and Chicago. He is also a teaching artist with Mudlark Theatre Company, teaching improv and ensemble in Evanston. Will is a company member with Two Pence Theatre Company and serves as Education Programs Manager, developing and teaching programs that bring Shakespeare into the lives of young people. Before moving to Chicago, Will directed and toured abridged Shakespeare to schools and libraries across Ohio as the co-founder and artistic director of The Billy Shakes Project at Kenyon College. Will is a director and designer in Chicago, and has worked with Jackalope Theatre Company, Walkabout Theatre Company, Fearless Theatre, and Rhinofest, amongst many others. His writing has been published in the literary magazine The Calling Bell and performed as part of the Valentine’s Play Festival. He is a graduate of Kenyon College and a proud Minnesotan.

Teaching Artist FreddieRamos_webWilfredo Ramos Jr. (Teaching Artist) is an educator, dramatist, and improviser in Chicago. As an educator, Wilfredo urges his students to be curious, to be playful, and, above all, to be bold. Wilfredo has been teaching with Northlight since the spring of 2016. In addition to his work with Northlight, Wilfredo currently serves as an Assistant Teaching Artist with the Steppenwolf for Young Adults program. He also teaches with Chicago Improv Productions and has taught with American Theater Company and Mudlark Theater. Wilfredo is a member of El Semillero, a playwriting collective that fosters the development of new works by Latinx playwrights, as well as the founder of the Surfboard Poems, a forum where writers who have been targets of systemic discrimination can share messages of hope and healing. In May 2015, Wilfredo received a BA in English from Yale University. He is bilingual in Spanish and English and conversational in French.

AshleyRoberson_webAshley Roberson (Teaching Artist) has been teaching with Northlight since 2011. She also teaches with the Center for Community Arts Partnership (CCAP), Victory Gardens, PureArt, Court Theatre, 16th Street Theatre, Writers Theatre and Steppenwolf.  She first discovered her love for teaching in college when she was hired as a camp counselor and has been working with kids ever since.  During her last year in college, she established and ran a theatre day camp called D.I.V.A. Drama Day, whose mission was to service the students of the surrounding D.C. area. As a performer she has been seen in Collaboraction Sketchbook series with Four Women (Pure Art), Home (Court Theatre), in the world première of Southbridge (Chicago Dramatists’) and most recently in the world premiere of Mr. Chickee’s Funny Money (Chicago Children’s Theatre). Ashley studied acting at The School at Steppenwolf, the British American Drama Academy (BADA), and is a proud graduate of Howard University where she earned her B.F.A. in Musical Theatre.

Christopher Salveter (Teaching Artist) is a singer, songwriter, performer, visual artist, and educator.  He was born in a Missouri river town but calls Chicago home.  For nearly two decades he has been engaging with Joseph Beuys’ concept of Social Sculpture (art that transforms society) in his writing and performances.  He spent the majority of his twenties on tour with his rock band, Low Skies, sometimes supporting acts like Neko Case and The Handsome Family.  Currently Christopher is developing a podcast with his group, The Fruit Stare, based on their recent stage show Dr. Atop’s Journey to the Polygon of Suffering. His training in teaching artistry includes completing the Northlight TA Apprenticeship and the Lincoln Center’s Fundamentals of Teaching Artistry program. He received his BA from the Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA and is also a certified Yoga instructor.

Alejandro Tey (Teaching Artist) is a Chicago-based actor, director, writer, and teaching artist. Alex is so proud and honored to be joining the Northlight teaching artist team- he also teaches Imaginastics and Beginner Circus Arts with Actors Gymnasium; Creative Improv with Mudlark Theater Company; and Performance-Based Sexuality Education with For Youth Inquiry. His plays for young audiences (and performers!) have been seen onstage at The Actor’s Gymnasium, Mudlark Theater, and McAllen Parks and Rec. Alex is the founding Artistic Director of Thirteen O’Clock Theatre in South Texas, and has worked nationally as an artistic associate with Sojourn Theatre, most recently as a performer/facilitator in the professional premiere of HOW TO END POVERTY in collaboration with Portland Playhouse. He is also a proud touring ensemble member of Theater Unspeakable and a company member with Rabid Bat Theatricals. Chicago acting credits include: The Compass (Steppenwolf for Young Adults), Sherlock Holmes and the Mystery of Portage Park (Filament Theatre); and Since I Suppose (one step at a time like this/Chicago Shakespeare Theatre). Oh, and don’t tell anyone, but he’s also Spider-Man.

Teaching Artist LindseyThornton_webLindsey Barlag Thornton (Teaching Artist) is an interdisciplinary artist and director of devised performance. Her recent projects have been shown at Archer Ballroom, The Copernicus Center, Defibrillator Gallery, The Foxhole, Hyde Park Art Center, Links Hall, Mana Contemporary, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Sullivan Galleries, Tritriangle Gallery, and Whitebox Studio Gallery, as well as in abandoned storefronts and on the streets of Chicago. She holds an M.F.A. in Performance from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Lindsey currently teaches Movement at ChiArts and is a Teaching Artist for the Museum of Contemporary Art, and formally taught for American Theater Company, Auditorium Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, and Writers Theatre. She was the 2015 Producer for SAIC’s MFA & BFA thesis festivals and for New Blood IX Festival of Performance. She works collaboratively under the name Genesis with artistic partner Amanda Dunne Acevedo. Lindsey most recently directed the devised performance, THIS…, at Links Hall as part of the IN>TIME 16 Performance Festival and performing in the ensemble of Michael Rohd’s devised play, The Compass, at Steppenwolf.

Emily Wills (Teaching Artist) has worked professionally as a teaching artist with Raven Theatre, Lifeline Theatre, Northlight and Mudlark. Emily is also a storyteller with the Lifeline Storytelling Project, and has appeared on stage in The Boy at the Edge of Everything, and The Reluctant Dragon at Northwestern University. Emily studied Theatre with a concentration in Theatre for Young Audiences and Community Development at Northwestern University and is a graduate with the class of 2015.