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New London - Connecticut College raised $12,000 over the weekend during the first event of its annual onStage at Connecticut College series, and will donate the money to the city's arts organizations.
All proceeds from ticket sales for Saturday's performance will be given to the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut to award to New London arts organizations.
The "Cherish New London" event included a performance by the Irish music ensemble Cherish the Ladies, a free community dessert reception and remarks by Connecticut College President Leo I. Higdon Jr. and New London Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio.
"The arts are vitally important to a city's cultural and economic health, and the strong arts scene here adds so much to New London's vibrancy and appeal," Higdon said during the event. "Connecticut College is a leading sponsor of the arts in our host city and this fundraiser was one more way we could contribute."
Finizio, who thanked the college for the donation, said that in tough economic times the arts are often among the most affected areas, making the college's support particularly significant.
The onStage series brings to campus artists in theater, music and dance - through the work of its dance company-in-residence, David Dorfman Dance - and performances and exhibitions by the college faculty and staff. Last year, the college provided a free street performance of the Asphalt Orchestra in downtown New London and brought the Brentano String Quartet to perform for and talk with middle-school students at the Interdistrict School for Arts and Communication in New London.