Oct 10, 2012
By Michael Kramer
Canada has lost one of it’s great champions of the arts.
Philanthropist Walter Carsen has died – at the age of 100.
Carsen was a significant supporter of the National Ballet of Canada, the Shaw Festival and the Art Gallery of Ontario.
He died in Toronto on Monday, just six weeks after celebrations marking his 100th birthday.
Karen Kain, The National Ballet Of Canada’s artistic director says Carsen was the company’s most significant donor in the past 20 years and she expressed deep sadness at his death.
When the ballet needed dedicated rehearsal space, Carsen helped to fund the Walter Carsen Centre designed by Arthur Erickson that serves as the National Ballet’s headquarters in Toronto.
Carsen’s support also embraced many other cultural institutions. He was a patron founder of the Art Gallery of Ontario and gave generously to the gallery during the past 30 years.
He was also a strong supporter of the Shaw Festival at Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Carsen received the Hnatyshyn Award for Voluntarism in the Performing Arts from the Governor-General and he was invested as an officer of the Order of Canada in 2002.