Ballantyne Magazine


Ballantyne Magazine covers news, events, real estate, restaurants, shopping, health, schools and business in the upscale Ballantyne Area of Charlotte, NC.

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"It's kind of fun, but I do it for the kids. For them, gingerbread houses are little sugar plum dreams that become a reality." — Keli Fayard, Pastry Chef, The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge Above: "Santa's Express" was part of the winning entry in the amateur category of the Gingerbread Lane competition in 2011. Below: In recent years, this fanciful creation adorned The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge's Gingerbread Lane. once the witch's spell is broken, an idea invented by Humperdinck's family team of librettists. Their clever plot twist inspired the tradition of baking gingerbread cookies at Christmas, and the house became a gingerbread construction embellished with icing and sweetmeats. Ironically, the beloved fairy tale that inspired gingerbread cookies and houses has its origin and profound meaning in hunger. "This fairy tale says clearly at the beginning that a great famine devastated the entire country, so there is a clear social and even historical basis for it," observes Dr. Donald Haase, chair of German and Slavic Studies at Wayne State University, and an authority on the fairy tale genre. A great famine swept Northern Europe in the 1400s, causing widespread starvation. He believes the story is motivated by a situation in which parents, facing an inability to nourish their family, fantasize a way to resolve the problem by abandoning their children in the forest. Fairy Tale Ending As with many Grimm stories, the cruelty of real life has a fairy tale ending: The witch uses her sugary house as a lure, and the starving siblings succumb as a form of wish fulfillment. Their desperation inspired Humperdinck to compose "The Children's Anthem," one of opera's most beautiful, if haunting songs. But eventually the witch is continued on page 42 40 BALLANTYNE MAGAZINE WINTER 2012-2013 Photo by Ray Sepesy Photo by Ray Sepesy

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