For the past ten years Jessica Gordon’s Academy of Performing Arts has been a mainstay in the local, regional and national dance world providing dance education for beginner through advanced dancers.
Founded by longtime dancer and dance instructor, Jessica (Gordon) Schettino, the academy located in Winthrop has been offering ballet, acro, tap, and hip hop for recreational and competitive students in East Boston, Winthrop, Revere and beyond.
Schettino was born on Beach Street in Revere to Ricky Gordon and Michelle (Bosco) Gordon, both Eastie natives and moved to Tuscano Avenue when she was eight-years-old.
Schettino got her start as a dancer at the age of three in East Boston under the tutelage of Eleanor Rubino and Rubino’s daughter, Paula Terenzi at the Eleanor Rubino Academy of Performing Arts.
While dancing, Schettino attended and graduated from Savio Prep in 2006. While in high school Schettino became a dance teacher’s assistant at the age of 14 at the dance academy and later became a full fledged dance teacher at the age of 17.
During her senior year in high school, Schettino was crowned Revere’s Junior Miss and went on to compete in Junior Miss Massachusetts
After graduating from Savio Schettino enrolled in Salem State College. While attending classes and working a full time job she took over the dance studio from Rubino and Terenzi after Rubino retired and Terenzi founded her own dance studio at the age of 21.
A year later Schettino founded Jessica Gordon’s Academy of Performing Arts.
While running the dance academy Schettino graduated from Salem State with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sports and Science Movement with a concentration in Dance.
Since she founded the studio, which has grown to over 100 students and six instructors, Schettino and her dances have found a string of local and national success.
She and her dancers have participated in many regional and national dance competitions, dancing at Disney World, Las Vegas, Atlantic City, and Myrtle Beach.
Her studio was the Grand Champion in the 11 and under category at the Inferno Dance Competition in 2020.
At the Beyond the Stars Dance Competition in 2019 the Studio received the Excellence Award as well as the Entertainment Award.
Last year, Schettino won Best Dance Assemble in 2019 for her choreography for musical Once Upon This Island from the The Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild.
The Academy also recently won the Choreography Award at the StarPower Dance Competition
Schettino’s dancers have also found a level of success after training at the academy with two students going on to dance professionally at Disney World in Orlando and one student that recently competed in a national beauty pageant.
Throughout her career, Schettino has never forgotten her roots in East Boston, Revere and Winthrop and she and her dancers are a constant presence at community-wide events.
The academy’s dancers perform yearly at Eastie Pride Day, Eastie’s Elves and the East Boston Columbus Day Parade as well as the Winthrop Fall Festival, the I Love Winthrop Festival and the annual Winthrop Christmas Tree Lighting.
She has also choreographed numerous musicals for Lynnfield Middle School and Lynnfield Community Schools.