Locals Take The Stage

Ballet Austin wants you to choose the next Mother Ginger for the 50th anniversary of The Nutcracker

Ballet Austin wants you to choose the next Mother Ginger for the 50th anniversary of The Nutcracker

austin photo: ballet austin mother ginger
Vote for the local celebrity who will play Mother Ginger in the 50th anniversary production of Ballet Austin's The Nutcracker Courtesy of Balle Austin / Facebook

This December, delight in imagination and tradition as Ballet Austin celebrates the 50th Anniversary production of Austin’s paramount holiday performance, The Nutcracker. In a city that makes a habit out of keeping things weird, it's no surprise that the Ballet Austin enjoys putting its own twist on even the most classical of productions.

 Mother Ginger honors a distinguished citizen with an inspirational record of community service, who will join the cast of more than 200 professional dancers. 

This year’s annual production maintains Ballet Austin’s tradition of having the role of Mother Ginger played by a local Austin celebrity. Ballet Austin asks the Austin community to cast the esteemed role of Mother Ginger for the season’s December 23 performance, by voting for the final nominees.

Austin’s choice Mother Ginger honors a distinguished citizen with an inspirational record of community service, who will join the cast of more than 200 professional dancers. The winner of the contest will accompany the ranks of notable former guests, such as Governor Anne Richards, Lance Armstrong, Michael Dell, Robert Rodriguez and Mayor Leffingwell.

Though the role is a non-speaking, non-gender specific and non-dancing part, Mother Ginger’s character is not for the faint of heart.

True, the winning theatrical rookie only has to appear on stage for a whopping total of three minutes. But for those few minutes the chosen performer must stand on a four-foot platform, in a massive eight foot dress, sporting a colorful headdress, strapped with gargantuan costume breasts, while a troupe of “Bon-Bon” children emerge from beneath the matronly character’s costume. Keep in mind, all the while 1,000 people will be watching.

The nominations are in and it’s up to the Austin community (That's you!) to select the winner. Scan the nominee’s names and brief biographies on Ballet Austin’s online ballot and then cast a vote for who you think would best fit Mother Ginger’s larger-than-life persona.

For those of you with a nominee already in mind, vote away! You can vote once every 24 hours. The winner will be announced on Friday, December 7 and will subsequently enter the majestic world of Stephen Mills’ choreography and Peter IIyich Tchaikovsky’s musical score. 

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Ballet Austin's The Nutcracker will be performed at the Long Center from Dec. 8 through Dec. 23.