Recognizing the need for balance in life and in the community, technology company Branson Ultrasonics Corp. continues to be a major supporter of the arts.

The Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut honored Branson’s commitment to maintaining that balance by presenting the Danbury-based company the 2017 Business Supports the Arts Award at its annual breakfast held Thursday at The Ambler Room Colonnade.

“We look for not only good engineers, but good, balanced people,” Mike Bontempo, vice president of human resources at Branson Ultrasonics said to the crowd of about 200 people.

Branson made a significant financial commitment to the Visual and Performing Arts Center at Western Connecticut State University in 2003. The lobby of the center is named in honor of the company.

“Thank you for helping us be balanced as a culture,” Bontempo said to the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut.

Whip Salon, with owner Amy Pal, received the Arts in the Community Award. Through benefit fashion shows, the Ridgefield company has raised more than $40,000 for organizations such as the Ridgefield Guild of Artists and the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

Diane Dubreiul of Diane Dubreuil Fine Arts in New Milford received the Heart of Arts Award.

“It was another year of celebrating the arts and business,” Lisa Scails, executive director of the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut, said. “We’ve made connections and shined a spotlight on those important relationships. I don’t think we do that enough.”

JoAnn Cueva, director of the Greater Danbury Chamber of Commerce, acknowledged the role the arts play in a thriving community. The chamber was a major sponsor of the event.

“Art in general is a huge asset to the community. It attracts people to live and work here,” she said. “It’s a huge incentive to people if there are arts in your own backyard. Arts have a big economic impact on the community.”

The original home of the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut was within the office of the Greater Danbury Chamber of Commerce. It now has its own location at 287 Main St. in Danbury and features a revolving art gallery.

Lullaby Requiem

Scails announced a major sponsorship commitment by the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut. Through grants and other sources, the organization will help raise funds for the Lullaby Requiem. Eric Lewis, noted violinist, composer and conductor, as well as professor emeritus at WestConn, is spearheading the project.

Lullaby Requiem is an orchestral and choral composition by Lewis to commemorate children who have died as a result of war, violence and abuse. Lewis said it is the first of its kind composition as the subject has been considered “too dark to be treated musically.”

“By combining the empathic power of melody with the inspiration of young voices, The Lullaby Requiem powerfully asserts the hopeful message that a shared concern for the survival and well-being of all children can change our politic and light the way toward a new civilization,” reads the website created for the project,, where donations may be made to bring the composition to fruition.

Talking at the breakfast event, Lewis called the project a “universal plea” to “stop the scourge” of child abuse and violence.

Arts progressing

Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton said the former Tuxdeo Junction in downtown Danbury will soon be repurposed as a community theater that will feature 150 to 180 events each year. The current renovation of Danbury High School will include a separate small theater that seats 200 to 300 people, Boughton said.

“Danbury is a leader in western Connecticut as it pertains to the arts,” he said.; 203-731-3338