Jan. 3, 2014 By Christian Murray
A Western Queens arts group—consisting of dancers, filmmakers and musicians—has formed with the goal of finding permanent space for an arts center in Sunnyside.
The organizers—mainly Sunnysiders– are inviting the community to join them for their official launch this Sunday at Claret Wine Bar, located at the corner of 46th Street and Skillman Ave., at 4pm.
The organization, called artspaceQ, has also been established with the mission of bringing the arts community together under one big tent. Furthermore, its members plan to put on events and educate children.
“The art scene has flourished here compared to just five years ago,” said Melissa Orlando, one of co-founders of artspaceQ. “We are reflecting a movement already begun and are reaching out to artists in all disciplines, and those interested in art, to come together.”
The organization was co-founded by four local artists who are involved in different fields. Sunnysider Trevor Bowen, who initiated the idea, is a musician and composer; Melissa Orlando is a dancer and teaching artist at Sunnyside Ballet Studio; Nick Reiner is a filmmaker with several feature films under his belt; and artist Patricia Dorfman founded SunnysideArtists.
Bowen said that the group has the support of Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer in its quest to acquire space. “We hope long term to have an actual building here,” Bowen said.
Orlando, Bowen and Reiner all have young children, and future projects include those to nurture artistic growth for the younger set.
Reiner is already putting together a film class for kids. Meanwhile, Orlando has plans to introduce a dance scholarship program to benefit children who currently do not have the opportunity to study classical dance.
SunnysideArtists.org founder Pat Dorfman, whose independent group has sponsored 24 fine art events since 2007, said she is “thrilled to be a co-founder among such strong talents and people with such good hearts, and have the support of a team from multiple disciplines.”
Location: Claret Wine Bar (Skillman Ave/46th Street)
Date: Sunday, Jan. 5
Time: 4 p.m.