Continental Ballet Company has established the Andre E Velthuisen Dancers Fund to honor a man of integrity and courage, who was a true friend and champion of Continental Ballet Company and its dancers. The Fund recognizes the contributions Andre made to the Company as a devoted supporter, until his passing in April 2022. Through this Fund, Andre’s commitment to the success of the Company can continue to encourage others to advocate for the advancement of ballet students and performers in general and the students and performers of Continental in particular.
Andre was a humble man and many do not know how important he was to the Company. He did not have a dance background; instead, he was in the international hotel business, successfully managing some of Europe’s most famous hotels, both in the Netherlands, his home country, as well as other EU countries. He then became well known outside the EU as a training specialist.
When he and Riet came to the United States, Andre was a strong supporter of Riet from the time she ventured into creating her first ballet studio in Florida. He recognized her ability to teach, choreograph dance works, mount professional productions, and inspire dancers to produce their best work. In Minnesota, he was always looking for ways to support Riet and her studio/company. He helped with advertising, providing food for fund raisers and for tired dancers. He attended every performance.
Andre knew that for Riet’s choreography and artistic vision to become real, she needed professional dancers. For that reason, in Andre’s honor, the goal of the Fund is to provide a source of payment which would allow the Company to continue to work with professional dancers both as teachers and performers.
Continental Ballet Company extends its special thanks to our generous donors for their early donations recognizing Andre’s important contributions to the Company. We are grateful and will continue to support the success of the Company through this Fund, just as Andre had done throughout his life.
In honor of these generous gifts, the public and dance community are invited to make online donations in support of the Fund by clicking the donate button below
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