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Report on Business A ballet legacy: Woman donates insurance policy sum to National Ballet of Canada

The donor: Marje Virro

The gift: $50,000

The cause: The National Ballet of Canada

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When Marje Virro was growing up in Toronto, her parents introduced her to ballet and she began a lifelong passion for dance.

Ms. Virro, 68, took dancing lessons as a child and became a loyal patron of the National Ballet of Canada, attending countless performances and travelling the world to see other companies and emerging stars. “Ballet and dance have been a part of my life forever,” she said. “I’ve always loved dancing and movement.”

She’s been a regular donor to the National Ballet but she recently went further and made the ballet the sole beneficiary of her $50,000 insurance policy. “There are times when you stop and take stock, and you start to think about a legacy,” said Ms. Virro, who recently retired from a career in social services. This gift of the insurance policy “makes me feel very settled,” she added.

She’s still an active National Ballet subscriber and she’s looking forward to a coming performance of The Merry Widow. She has also asked that her donation be used to help up-and-coming choreographers. “I really feel that life evolves, art evolves and I would like to be able to facilitate young choreographers having the opportunity to create and then to perform and present,” she said. “That makes me happy.”

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