MARY J. BLIGE has stepped in to help save a performing arts school in New York from closure - the R&B singer has led donations and promised to help raise more cash for the project.
The Harlem School of the Arts shut its doors on 3 April (10) after a shortfall in funds, but when Blige heard the news she immediately championed the cause and helped bring in donations.
The school has now received a $1 million (£666,667) boost from various benefactors and is set to reopen at the weekend (24-25Apr10).
Madeline Nelson-Small, executive director of Blige's charity, the Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now, admits the star devoted herself to saving the school as soon as she heard it was in trouble.
She tells the New York Post, "We were at a dinner party and (Blige) stood up, got on her cell phone and started calling people."