Queens College and NYC Parks launch borough-wide cultural partnership

L. to R., Susan Friedman-Diaz, Queens Parks administrator, NYC Department of Parks & Recreation; Frank H. Wu, president, Queens College; Simone Yearwood, interim dean of Faculty, School of Arts & Humanities, Queens College; Dexter Stanley-Tauvao, drums, Antonio Hart Quartet; Jaqueline Langsam, Queens Borough commissioner, New York City Parks & Recreation; Jon Yanofsky, director, Kupferberg Center for the Arts; Regina Bain, executive director, Louis Armstrong House Museum; Ellen Kodadek, executive & artistic director, Flushing Town Hall; Yu-Chen Tseng, piano, ACSM Trio; David Nájera, drums, ACSM Trio; Jeffrey Rosenstock, AVP, External and Governmental Relations, Queens College; Pablo Lanouguere, bass, ACSM Trio; Miki Yamanaka, piano, Antonio Hart Quartet; and Antonio Hart, saxophone/leader, director of Jazz Studies and professor, Aaron Copland School of Music, Queens College.
Photo provided by Queens College

A transformative borough-wide partnership between Queens College and NYC Parks was launched at Archie Spigner Park, in Jamaica on Thursday, June 27.

The initiative aims to promote cultural vibrancy through a series of free performances and interactive workshops focused on music, dance, and the visual arts.

The inaugural event featured the Antonio Hart Quartet in a free, open-to-the-public performance, marking the first date in the Queens Jazz Trail Concert Series, sponsored by the Kupferberg Center for the Arts. The series highlights the partnership’s efforts to bring high-quality, accessible cultural programming to the borough’s communities.

Among the notable speakers at the launch event were Jacqueline Langsam, Queens Borough commissioner, NYC Parks; Frank H. Wu, president of Queens College; Ellen Kodadek, executive director of Flushing Town Hall; and Simone Yearwood, interim dean of Arts and Humanities, Queens College. The event also featured performances by the Queens College Aaron Copland School of Music Jazz Trio and the Antonio Hart Quartet. Emmy-nominated saxophonist Hart is a professor of jazz studies at Queens College.

In addition to the Jazz Trail Series, the NYC Parks-supported initiative will showcase emerging and professional artists from the Queens College School of Arts. Attendees of the launch event also enjoyed a performance by the Queens College Aaron Copland School of Music (ACSM) Jazz Trio.

The initiative will run through October and includes events at multiple locations across Queens. Highlights include the Beach Opening Ceremony at Rockaway Beach and Saturday music concerts at Dinkins’ Circle in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. Art and nature walks will be offered in collaboration with the Godwin-Ternbach Museum.

Additional events will take place in Alley Pond Park, Crocheron Park, Forest Park, Highland Park, and parks in southeast Queens and the Rockaways. A continually updated events listing is available on the Queens College School of Arts website.