The event happened many years ago, but Dr. Kanta Marwah has never forgotten it. The distinguished research professor and Professor Emeritus of Economics had recently arrived in Ottawa to join the faculty at Carleton University. She chose to spend this particular New Year’s Eve celebrating in the NAC lobby.
“That was my introduction to the Centre,” she says. “The evening was so enjoyable it still flashes in my mind over 40 years later.” There have been many more happy memories since then. Dr. Marwah is a long-time subscriber to English Theatre. “I’ve sat in the same seat for over two decades,” she says. “Every performance and event has something special that touches me.”
When you hear Dr. Marwah’s passion for the performing arts, you understand immediately why she spends so much time here. “No matter what form the arts take, they appeal to our aesthetic senses,” she explains. “They are a source of joy. They take us out of our personal selves to a much higher plateau where you can experience a series of emotions. For example, music can make you laugh, weep, rejoice.”
It is this very passion for the arts that have led Dr. Marwah to create an endowment in support of the English Theatre Company. “The endowment will help the new in-house company in its formative years,” she explains. “It gives me great pleasure to be able to do this.” With the endowment, the capital is held in perpetuity while the income is spent for theatre purposes at the discretion of the Artistic Director.
Dr. Marwah says creating an endowment is a wonderful way to help ensure a bright future for the performing arts, something that is deeply important to the retired professor. “Our country is defined by its values, arts and culture,” she says. “In whatever way we can, we should support the arts even if it’s a small amount. It’s a good feeling to know the endowment will make a difference forever.”