A Graduate of The Actors Studio Drama School's Master of Fine Arts program in New York City, Contessa has studied under the moderation of Ellen Burstyn, Estelle Parsons, Martin Landau, James Lipton and Jacqueline Knapp - with sessions guided by Alec Baldwin and Melissa Leo. Contessa spent years studying in NYC & LA with mentor Elizabeth Kemp who was coach/mentor to Hugh Jackman, Harvey Keitel and other countless Actors/Artists including fellow MFA program alumnus Bradley Cooper. Somewhere in the Bravo vault, is footage of Contessa as a student, asking questions to fellow Texan, Matthew McConaughey and Brad Pitt when they were guests on the famed series, "Inside The Actors Studio".