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Who is Production Mama?

My name is Katrina Mena Rick but a lot of my friends call me Kat. I was born and raised in Miami, FL (Hialeah to be exact) to a family of crazy Cubans. My parents are immigrants and I was practically raised by my Abuelita Maria whom I love so dearly. I have a younger brother named Joseph and a younger sister Alyssa. As a toddler I would spend hours reenacting Ariel’s “Part of Your World” and knew immediately that I wanted to grow up and be either a mermaid or a singer. I would say that I got half my wish… LOL

I am a wife to my wonderful husband Keith and a mother to two gorgeous baby girls, Adrienne (4) and Amelia (23 months). They are the lights of my world, my entire universe.

I am 34 years old and have been working professionally in the entertainment industry ever since I was 8 years old when I started singing with the Miami Children’s Choir and Florida Grand Opera. I studied classical voice and piano while growing up and went to the prestigious New World School of the Arts high school in Downtown Miami. My family sacrificed a lot in order for me to do all of these things. My father would work the night shift and my mother would go to school in the evenings and on the weekends until she was able to graduate from Ultrasound school when I was 13. Despite being in the arts, my parents supported me and instilled in me an incredible work ethic and discipline. After I graduated high school, I was accepted on a music and academic scholarship to the University of Miami Frost School of Music. I originally enrolled as a Classical Voice Major but wanted to explore other genres and transferred into the Studio Music and Jazz Program. My passion became Latin Jazz and Brazilian bossanova. In 2007, I decided to follow that passion and study abroad in Belo Horizonte, Brazil where I studied Portuguese and sang professionally with the Puppa Santana Jazz Band. When I finished college in 2008, I immediately through myself into freelancing as a music director, vocal coach, performer and teacher. In 2009, my husband Keith (then boyfriend at the time) lost of his job and we decided to move to Orlando together so that he could pursue his education at Full Sail University. When moving to Orlando, I sang with several local bands and began my own vocal coaching practice. I soon went back to school and graduated with a Master’s degree in Entertainment Business with the hopes of casting a wider net onto the entertainment industry. Soon after graduating in 2011, I was hired at Disney.

As I look back at my time at Disney, I am incredibly grateful for the experience and real world education that it has provided me during these last nine years. Back in 2011, I first started off as a Casting Director for American Idol listening to singers from all over the world, helping cast talent for our daily shows. In 2013, I worked at Disney’s Music Department and provided production support for hundreds of custom music projects for Disney’s shows, parades and nighttime spectaculars. After that brief taste of life in production, I knew 100% that this was the direction that I wanted my career to go in, so I began to freelance as a music/vocal producer on the side while I continued to work and grow at Disney. After my time with the music department, I was given the opportunity to train as an Entertainment Stage Manager for Magic Kingdom’s Shows Team. I was quickly thrown into the deep end when it came to managing live events and shows.. and absolutely loved it! I worked at EPCOT and then Hollywood Studios for 4 years and learned almost every show in those parks.

A few years later I found myself getting bored with the consistency of managing operational shows in the theme parks, and began to pursue production again. I was then given the task to be a Production Stage Manager for the inaugural Star Wars Galactic Nights as well as help manage The Music of Pixar Live, both at DHS. In 2017, I reached out to both the music and broadcast production teams at Disney, and was given the opportunity to be a Production Manager at Broadcast. It was truly during these last two and half years at Broadcast that I have found what it is that I want to do. I’ve produced content with international and domestic broadcast networks, as well as led creative teams of animators, graphic designers, camera operators and audio engineers to create custom video content for Disney Parks Live Entertainment. I have loved every bit of my Disney career, but unfortunately due to COVID-19 closures, I was furloughed in April 2020.

Working in production has been challenging, exciting and fulfilling. I have learned skills I never knew I was capable of learning, and guess what? I am ready to take these skills and create my next chapter. I started my Production Mama page earlier this year to share my journey of how I was SURVIVING as a working mother in production, and SURVIVING this period of furlough from Disney, however I am reclaiming myself and changing my focus to now capture my journey of how I am THRIVING as a working mother who has all of these crazy mad skills and wants to start her own production company… Production Mama Studios, Inc. It sounds insane, but I. AM. THAT. GIRL.

I am that woman that is not afraid to take risks, to shatter glass ceilings, to follow her passion and to empower those around her to do the same. I am raising two QUEENS in this household, and I want them to learn that they too can be like their Mama — fearless, passionate and hardworking.

So on this blog, I plan on sharing my point of view, showcase my life as a mother and wife, and document the evolution of this next chapter in my life, where I take charge of my own career and begin to freelance as the creative multi-faceted, multi-lingual, multi-media Producer/Director that I am, AKA a Latina Mom Boss. I can’t wait to have you be a part of this next chapter with me! #womeninproduction #minorityownedbusiness #latinapower #mompower#womanempowerment #multimediaproduction #production #mydisneycareer #productionmama #productionmamastudios #furloughed #entertainmentindustry #covid #latinamom #workingmother #workingmom #smallbusiness #raisingqueens #pivot #musicproducer #videoproducer #videodirector #executivedirector

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