Bringing more and better concerts to borough

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Photo Courtesy ABC Family
Jorge-Luis Pallo, who grew up in Corona, now plays guidance counselor Marc Molina on the ABC Family Show “The Secret Life of the American Teenager.”Photo Courtesy ABC Family
Jorge-Luis Pallo, who grew up in Corona, now plays guidance counselor Marc Molina on the ABC Family Show “The Secret Life of the American Teenager.”

Musica Reginae Productions (MRP) has made it its mission to make sure there are more concerts being held in Queens and reaching people in various communities.
MRP, which is based in Maspeth, was founded nine years ago. Its executive director, Barbara Podgurski, said that its founders felt that there were not enough concerts being made available to the Queens community, and there were not many that were affordable. In addition, the organization wanted there to be shows that adults could enjoy by themselves or as a family.
The group “is dedicated to the belief that the people of Queens deserve to have first-rate classical and contemporary music available to them in their community.”
“We’re very price-conscious and family-oriented,” said Podgurski, who has been with MRP since its inception and became Executive Director in 2007.
Throughout its season, Musica Reginae Productions puts on four concerts for the general public, and also has a programming series specifically for children. In doing the programs for the children, Podgurski said that the kids get to try the instruments, learn how to listen to music, form conclusions and learn that those conclusions are never wrong.
There is a core group of musicians that have been performing in MRP concerts since it was formed. During the last two years, they have also been approaching well-known artists to also come and perform.
MRP also commissions works from various composers.
The next Musica Reginae Productions concert will be held at 4 p.m. on Sunday, January 11. It will feature clarinetist Charles Neidich. “Clarinet Quintets of Brahms and Coleridge-Taylor” will be performed.
MRP artistic director Caroline Chin said that this will be a very exciting concert. Along with describing Neidich as a great clarinet player, she said that he will be using a special clarinet that is a reproduction of the ones used in Brahms time, which she said is very different from modern clarinets.
“You can’t see this anywhere else,” Podgurski said.
The concert will be held in LeFrak Hall at the Kupferberg Center for the Arts at Queens College, which is located at Kissena Boulevard and the Long Island Expressway in Flushing. Admission is $20.
Podgurski and Chin said that they have a strong group of followers who regularly attend their concerts. Even so, they are always looking to try to reach even more people.
“I think we have a really nice following,” said Chin, who has been the Artistic Director of MRP for two years. “We see a lot of the same people at all the concerts.”
Podgurski said that reaching more people will continue to be a main focus of MRP.
“We really want to build the audience,” she said, adding that they want to have more people hear live music and keep the tradition alive.
When people come to the concerts, Chin said that she hopes they enjoy the music and “maybe are able to hold onto some of the stories behind the compositions that we chose to program.”
Chin added, “It’s just really exciting for me to get people really excited about music because that’s what I love.”
For more information on Musica Reginae Productions, call 718-894-2178 or visit www.musicareginae.org.