It’s a good bet that prior to being associated with Les Jeunes Gouverneurs des Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal, many of the young professional members were not particularly familiar with dance, possibly never even having attended a ballet performance. But the dynamic and passionate co-presidents of the JG, Alexandra Hamel-Morrisset, a lawyer with CDNP avocats, and Marie-Christine Beaulieu, Vice President, Fiera Comox Partners Inc., are confident in their mission to sensitize and attract a new generation of social entrepreneurs to art and philanthropy and to boost their networking opportunities.
Founded in 2012, the Jeunes Gouverneurs (JG) committee of take-charge individuals brings together professionals from different backgrounds, aged between 25 and 35 years old. This season, in collaboration with Les Grands Ballets and in addition to two networking cocktails, the JG benefit events will include the Arts and Business Cocktail-Conference as well as classical ballet classes offered to members by company dancers. The JG circle “is able to attend a contemporary ballet while discovering the importance of philanthropy and the critical role that the arts play in stimulating creativity and developing a vital arts scene,” says Hamel-Morisset. In five years, more than 1,400 young professionals have become members of the JG.
Honorary ambassador for the JG’s 2017-2018 season is prominent Quebec City lawyer and Ex-president of the Quebec bar Lu Chan Khuong, of Bellemare avocats. “The arts have a crucial impact on our society and are an important catalyst for learning, discovery, and achievement,” she says. “There are no small donations. When you give, you grow.” Khuong is a leader, encouraging and supportive of the JG, and freely gives her time and advice. “She is the model of philanthropy. She inspires us,” says Beaulieu.
The JG committee raised $100,000 at last year’s fifth annual Benefit Soirée, drawing more than 450 guests to Place des Arts’ Salon Urbain. “The idea is to shake off the dusty notion of ballet,” says Hamel-Morisset. “Festive events like these provide our members with a fuller picture of the art form and bolsters their desire to give back.”