Friend's Corps Hero image Photo Credits

Artists of the Ballet in Theme and Variations. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann.

Friends' Corps

About Friends' Corps 

Support Artistic Excellence

Members of The National Ballet of Canada’s Friends’ Corps contribute to the beauty and energy of great dance. Donations from Friends provide critical core funding to help support the dancers, musicians, and wardrobe and set craftspeople who produce the excellence you see on stage.

By joining the Friends' Corps with an annual gift of $75 to $1,999, you join a community of supporters who value creativity, dedication and the pursuit of excellence. In total, Friends’ Corps donors generously give approximately $850,000 a year in support of general operations, an important part of the National Ballet’s continued artistic success.

In appreciation of your gift, the National Ballet will involve you in our community with: 

  • special Friends’ Corps events
  • our exclusive newsletter, Preview 
  • opportunities to meet the artists of the ballet
  • the invitation to use the Friends’ Corps lounge at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts during National Ballet performances.

 For a full list of Friends' Corps recognition and acknowledgement, please click here.

Join Now 

 See photos from special Friends' Corps and Patron events.

  • Gallery image 1
    Gallery image 1

    Members at the Backstage Tour at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, November 2007. Photographer: Andrea Rothecker.

  • Gallery image 2
    Gallery image 2

    Patrons’ Council members Ann Hogarth and M.G. Eaton celebrate with Brendan Saye at the Season Opening Party, October, 2008. Photographer: Gary Beechey.

  • Gallery image 3
    Gallery image 3

    Patron Jim Fleck with Principal Dancer Guillaume Côté and other guests talk during the dinner following The Agony and The Ecstasy Symposium, April, 2009. Photographer: Johnny Vong.

  • Gallery image 5
    Gallery image 5

    Donors are invited to the Walter Carsen Centre to watch the dancers rehearse in studio. Above, choreographer Sabrina Matthews leads Jonathan Renna and Sonia Rodriguez in rehearsal for DEXTRIS. Photographer: Sian Richards.

  • Gallery image 6
    Gallery image 6

    Donors are invited to the final dress rehearsal on stage at the Four Seasons Centre. Above, Heather Ogden and Etienne Lavigne with Artists of the Ballet and coaches in rehearsal for Symphony in C. Photographer: Sian Richards.

To join the Friends’ Corps or to arrange of Gift of Membership for a loved one, please contact:

Deanna Underwood 
Senior Development Officer, Friends' Corps
416 345 9686 x370 


With great appreciation, The National Ballet of Canada gratefully invites donors to special events that are designed to enhance an appreciation and knowledge of our talented artists and the movement, power and passion of the art of ballet.

Unique Friends' Corps events include:

  • Dress rehearsals at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts
  • Opportunities to watch the dancers in rehearsal at The Walter Carsen Centre
  • Backstage Tours
  • Friends' Corps Night to tour The Walter Carsen Centre
  • Plus more.

Friends' Corps Calendar of Events 

Our Donors 

 Playing their part – the Horn Section of The National Ballet of Canada

With 90 years of employ amongst them, the four members of the Horn Section of the National Ballet Orchestra annually donate together to support The National Ballet of Canada.

Gary Pattison, Principal Horn, member of the National Ballet Orchestra since 1977:
There are not a lot of ballet companies in the world that are willing to take on the challenge of supporting a large full-time orchestra that is capable of presenting the repertoire as it was originally conceived. This orchestra has been an important part of this company from the beginning and donating is just one way to show our support and appreciation.

Vince Barbee, 2nd Horn, Orchestra member since 1977:
We take great pride in our Orchestra and our role within the company. We understand how hard the dancers work and we enjoy the opportunity to perform for and with them. Our donations are a gesture of good will and a vote of confidence in the good of the entire company.

Scott Wevers, 3rd Horn, Orchestra member since 2006:
Although I have been with the company for a relatively short time compared to my colleagues, I have been made to feel very welcome. One of the many reasons why I feel fortunate to be a part of the National Ballet, and why I am happy to contribute as a section, is the mutual respect I sense across all departments, from management to production to the artists.

Derek Conrod, 4th Horn, Orchestra member since 1990:
I know we all feel a great devotion to the National Ballet and this is one way we can demonstrate this. It’s an indication of how well respected and valued we feel by the company, how important we think the National Ballet is to our city and culture, that we wish to contribute as a section. I have worked with many orchestras throughout my career and I can tell you honestly that the National Ballet Orchestra is without compare the happiest and most caring group of musicians I have ever worked with. I love my job here.