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WestportNow welcomes news and notices from Westport community organizations and individuals. Please send them to editor@westportnow.com for consideration for publication. Be sure to include the Westport connection, date and time of event, if appropriate, as well as contact information. WestportNow reserves the right to edit submissions to conform to our editorial style.

Westport’s Suzuki School to Host ‘Phantom’ Stars

Two stars from Broadway’s “Phantom of the Opera” are scheduled to perform opera and Christmas classics in the Suzuki Music School of Westport’s second concert set for Sunday, Dec. 11, at Southport’s Pequot Library.

Part of the school’s 2005-2006 “Da Capo” concert series, Sunday’s “Broadway Christmas” will feature sopranos Rebecca Pitcher and Margaret-Mary Kane, stars from the Andrew Lloyd Webber classic.

The Pequot Library is located at 720 Pequot Ave., Southport. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children. Preferred seating is $35 and $15 respectively. School officials say tickets will be sold in advance only with no sales at the door. For further information call 227-9474.

Tiffanys Holds Fund-Raiser for Earthplace

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Tiffanys held a fund-raiser for Earthplace Wednesday night. The event helped raise money for the new exhibition hall at Earthplace. Here, Mary Alice Timmins tries a key in the “Keys to a Cause.” Those attending would purchase a key and try it to receive one of the gifts inside. Timmins’ key did not unlock the box. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Matthew Mandell for WestportNow.com

Playhouse Gets $2 Million to Maintain White Barn Legacy

Westport Country Playhouse officials announced Monday they have received a $2 million capital grant from the Lucille Lortel Foundation to name in perpetuity the building adjacent to the theater as “The Lucille Lortel White Barn Center.”  WestportNow.com Image
Getting Grant: There was a large crowd on hand at Monday’s acceptance of a grant by the Westport Country Playhouse from the Lucille Lortel Foundation.  Pictured are first row (l-r): Tazewell Thompson, WCP artistic director-designate; Ann Sheffer, WCP board member; Joanne Woodward, WCP artistic director and board member; Elisabeth Morten, WCP board chair. Second row (l-r): Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal; Anne Keefe, WCP associate artistic director; Jim Ross, president, Lucille Lortel Foundation, White Barn Theatre Foundation and Lucille Lortel Theatre Foundation; Alison Harris, WCP executive director; Dick Ticktin, trustee, Lucille Lortel Foundation, White Barn Theatre Foundation and Lucille Lortel Theatre Foundation; and Jerry Rosenberg, chief of charities bureau, office of New York State attorney general. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Kathleen O’Rourke for WestportNow.com

In addition, the Lucille Lortel Foundation has pledged a $500,000 operating grant over 10 years to create The White Barn Theatre Program at the Playhouse.

The original White Barn Theatre, founded by Lortel in 1947 to present experimental works, is now a museum located on Newtown Turnpike in Westport. Its final production there was in the summer of 2002. 

“We are honored to accept these gifts,” stated Joanne Woodward, Playhouse artistic director. “They are especially meaningful because I knew and admired Lucille Lortel.  Her generosity and commitment to the American theater guided the work at the White Barn for over half a century and were an inspiration to me.”

Holiday Stockings, Please

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Visitors to the Ludlum House on the Westport Historical Society’s 19th annual Holiday House Tour today were asked to remove their shoes outside. The house at 42 Sasco Creek previously belonged to the late, internationally famous suspense writer Robert Ludlum, who lived here for more than 20 years. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Form and Function

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This house reconstructed in 2002 at 21 Burritts Landing South captivated Westport Historical Society Holiday House Tour visitors with its combined spacious kitchen-dining room that includes a pool table and grand piano. The design incorporates three ceiling elevations that allow sunlight to create a curved feel on the main floor. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Select Photos To Be Honored

The first selectmen of Westport and Weston are scheduled to honor senior shutterbugs at a special gala planned at the Westport Center for Senior Activities on Friday, Dec. 9, from 3 to 5 p.m.

The gala marks the opening of the Y’s Men of Westport-Weston Camera Club’s Annual Photo Contest and Exhibition. The exhibition is set to run through Jan. 27, 2006.

According to Stan Groner, Camera Club president, more than 40 senior photographers submitted more than 75 photos for the contest to be judged by professional photographers.

Westport First Selectman Gordon Joseloff and Weston First Selectman Woody Bliss are expected to make more than a dozen awards from Honorable Mention to Best in Show, Groner said. He added that the prizes will range from a digital camera to ribbons and certificates. The Westport Center for Senior Activities is located at 21 Imperial Ave., and the event is open to the public. For further information call 454-4315.