For 40 years, Colette and James Majerle have been Kansas City Ballet season subscribers. They’ve also supported the ballet as Bolender Society Members and as donors to the Ballet’s Endowment Campaign.
Colette’s love of ballet began as a student in her teens and continued through her 30s. “Having been a ballet student, it’s humbling to see real dancers dance,” she says. That’s why she became a season ticket holder with friends. At some point in the 80s, she needed a date and James stepped up and the pair have been attending ever since.
James also grew up with a connection to ballet. His older sister took ballet lessons from Kansas City Ballet Founder Miss Tania. “I remember watching her [Miss Tania] in the studio as she tapped her cane. I was very little, but she made quite an impression,” he recalls.
Years later, their daughter took lessons. Former Kansas City Ballet Dancer Alicia Good Boresow was one of her teachers.
It was important to the couple to introduce their family to the Ballet, to share their enthusiasm. Colette says, “We’ve taken our kids to performances over the years. Our daughter loves to go, and our son enjoys it as well. Now we are excited to introduce our grandchildren to the ballet.”
The Majerles have their hearts set on taking their grandchildren to experience The Nutcracker soon.
SUPPORTING THE ENDOWMENT CAMPAIGN
For the Majerles, supporting the arts as well as education are vital to their family. They have chosen to contribute to Kansas City Ballet’s Endowment Campaign. These funds will grow and continue to provide support for the Ballet’s programs.
When asked why they give, James had this to say: “During my professional career, I learned it was important for individuals and businesses to set an example and to show that the more people contribute, the more people will contribute.”
Just how do you deepen your relationship to an art form? James has some thoughts: “With any performing arts, you have to make an investment of time to the art form to increase your appreciation. That’s why having season tickets is really important, to acquire a knowledge and appreciation of the art form.”
With all the many ballets we have attended, we have been fortunate to observe many dancers throughout their entire careers. “It is very rewarding to follow an apprentice as they advance, develop and assume increasingly leading roles in the company.”
Colette gives an example, “We were privileged to watch Sean Duus early in his career. He developed and matured into an incredible Pas de Deux performer. We have also watched beautiful performances by Alicia Good Boresow. Later, she taught ballet to our daughter. These artists are just amazing!”
HOPE FOR THE FUTURE
Over the years, Colette and James have witnessed so much change and growth of the company, from dancers, leadership, and performance venues. The couple has persisted in their commitment and love of the art form.
James shares: “Seeing the ballet at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts with a packed house after many years attending in theaters not created for dance, is amazing. We now have a world class dance venue. As a lifelong Kansas Citian, I’m so proud.”
“I want Kansas City to be recognized as a top cultural city,” Colette says. “We have a top facility and a fantastic ballet company, I want the world to know about our cultural gem: Kansas City Ballet.”
Asked for one of their favorite memories, the Majerles agree: “Swan Lake was so beautiful! It was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen the ballet do,” James remembers. Colette says, “The first time we saw the Kansas City Ballet perform Swan Lake, my heart just felt bigger.”
WHAT ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT?
To make a gift that is meaningful to you and makes a lasting impact for Kansas City Ballet, please contact Director of Gift Planning Rebecca Zandarski at 816.216.5597 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Top photo by James Majerle.
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