Underneath the hubbub of rehearsals, production specs, and marketing for Marin Ballet’s Nutcracker, there is a project that quietly marches with us into the theater each year……..Nutcracker Surprise. The concept is simple:
- Bring the art of ballet and the communal tradition of Nutcracker to life for people in our community.
- Make the magic as accessible as is the diversity of our community.
- Share our passion for dance.
It’s a bit like being an elf in Santa’s workshop, we don’t talk much about how we make magic, we just keep doing it. And, Nutcracker Surprise is an endeavor close to our hearts.
Over more than a decade, together with our Nutcracker Sponsors, we have given nearly 14,000 free tickets to children, seniors, families, veterans, and special-needs audience members for our Nutcracker performances. A good portion of the 2nd tier of seating at the theater is select guests from a broad range of social service agencies, schools, arts organizations, and non-profit groups with whom we partner. Susan Tacherra, Director of the Bolinas Children’s Center has been a longtime community advocate for the project, saying “There are many, many children and families who would absolutely LOVE to come and see Nutcracker. Especially those who would never be able to afford to see a live production if it were not for the charitable donation of tickets. We will use every one of the tickets Marin Ballet donors have offered.”
Marin Ballet has a long legacy and a generous culture of giving. Our donors, patrons, and student families are consistently engaged in serving the arts here in Marin County. So, it’s no surprise that reaching out with free ballet tickets is a favorite project. Lawrence Ewing, Marin Ballet’s Executive Director notes, “We’re very proud of what we have been able to accomplish in partnership with our Nutcracker Sponsors. Sharing the gift of ballet with underserved audiences, while providing an opportunity for young dancers to perform, inspires us year after year. We are grateful to be a part of such a generous community.” Lawrence, together with the Board Trustees, is busy cultivating Sponsors for this year. Likewise, we are always looking for new organizations and community members with whom to share the Nutcracker experience with free tickets. If you know of a potential Nutcracker Sponsor or a recipient group, please reach out to us before November 10th!