New Britain City Journal

New Britain's Weekly Online Newspaper


State Funds 18 New Britain Arts Programs

The Greater New Britain Arts Alliance has announced the award of 18 grants to New Britain area arts organizations. The $60,000 grant program was made possible by State of Connecticut Directed Local Funds administered by the Commission on Culture and Tourism.

According to Eugene Tellier, GNBAA President, “The purpose of these grants was to strengthen the arts organizations and enhance their service to the community. We are delighted with the results of the efforts of our Grants Committee in designating funds for some really wonderful programs.”

Individual grant awards were capped at $5,000 so that a wide variety of programs and activities would benefit.

According to David Mardis, Vice President of the GNBAA and Chairman of the Alliance’s Government Relations Committee, “The arts are a very important part of the economy of our region and that is how we very often find ourselves defending funding for them, but the arts should never be seen simply in financial terms. We are very fortunate to have legislative leaders in New Britain who appreciate the value of the arts on every level.”

What the funded arts organizations actually make happen, however, cannot be conveyed in a list. Things like the intense sense of satisfaction children and adults experience when learning about painting, drawing, sculpting, photographing and showing creative work at the New Britain Museum of American Art, the Art League of New Britain, Klingberg Family Centers, and the Downtown Gallery. Encountering pigs and cows and hats and masks and ball bearings and screw drivers that make learning about nature, culture, and manufacturing a delight for thousands of children and adults who visit the New Britain Youth Museums and the New Britain Industrial Museum. CONCORA, the Main Street Singers, the New Britain Symphony, the Connecticut Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, the Plainville Wind Ensemble, the Polish American Foundation of Connecticut and the Music Series at South Church are able to bring the joy of music to both those who perform it and those who are enthralled by listening to it. Hole in the Wall Theater, the Repertory Theatre of New Britain, and the New Britain Youth Theater enable both those who put on plays and audiences to experience the unique and often powerful stimulation of live theatrical performance. The New Britain Public Library and Saint Mark’s Church are both providing opportunities for adults and children, literally, to dance. Finally, Trinity-on-Main is helped in bringing all the singing, dancing, listening and performing together in a way that promotes feelings of pride in our community and helps make New Britain’s downtown more beautiful, more interesting, more fun, and, in general, a better place for all.

While 18 arts programs were assisted with the State funds administered by the Greater New Britain Arts Alliance, over 45 not-for-profit arts organizations are members of the organization. Established in 1996, the GNBAA promotes the arts by providing a unified voice, serving as a catalyst for arts-related collaborations, nurturing individual creative abilities, and advocating for the arts as vital to the economic health and quality of life of our region.

Art League of New Britain, $2,575

Classes for adults and children, exhibition space and a gathering place for artists and others

CONCORA, $4,100

Connecticut’s premiere professional choral group

Connecticut Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, $4,100

Continuing the orchestral tradition with performance and instruction opportunities

Hole in the Wall Theater, $3,600

All volunteer Community Theater enlivening downtown New Britain

Klingberg Family Centers Art, Theater, Music, $2,000

To support the continuation and enhancement of pottery instruction at the Raymond Hill School

Main Street Singers, $3,600

A community of children’s voices where they learn to sing and have opportunities to perform

Music Series at South Church, $3,600

Providing high quality musical performances in the heart of downtown New Britain

New Britain Industrial Museum, $2,575

Giving life to the artifacts and history of New Britain’s industrious past

New Britain Museum of American Art, $5,000

Renowned collection forms the basis for extensive programming for adults and children

New Britain Public Library, $1,850

For the further development of their dance program to enrich the arts offerings of the institution

New Britain Symphony Society, $3,600

Supporting classical musicians and providing symphonic musical opportunities for adults and children

New Britain Youth Museum, $4,100

Extensive programming for adults and children at locations downtown & at Hungerford Park

New Britain Youth Theater, $3,600

A new venture to train youth in the theater arts

Plainville Wind Ensemble, $2,000

All volunteer community band offering free concerts that raise funds to support local charities

Polish American Foundation of Connecticut, $2,000

For the support of the Chopin Concert Series and the music program in the Sloper-Wesoly House

Repertory Theatre of New Britain, $3,600

All volunteer Community Theater in its 65th Season

Saint Mark’s Dance Program, $2,000

To offer free after-school dance and literacy instruction to New Britain youth

Trinity-On-Main Performance Center, $4,100

To support their arts, community and cultural events and programming in downtown New Britain

More information is available on the Web at or by calling 860-832-8299.