06 Oct Augusta Loses a Star, Debi Ballas
The Augusta Community lost a star this week. Debi Ballas, The Augusta Players’ Artistic Director Emerita, passed away on Monday leaving a legacy of love in our Community. Anyone who knew Debi knew she loved her family and she loved the Augusta Players. She saved the Players; bringing larger than life Broadway style performances to the Imperial stage. Debi will be missed by the theater community along with anyone who attended an Augusta Players show and anyone who had the opportunity to know her. The Greater Augusta Arts Council Board and Staff offers prayers for the Ballas family and the extended theater family who knew and loved our Diva.
-Brenda Durant, Executive Director
A Note from The Augusta Players
It is with a heavy heart that I write to you today to share that Debi Ballas, The Augusta Players Artistic Director Emerita, passed away peacefully in her home this morning. We ask that you keep Debi’s family, particularly her husband, Chuck, her daughters, Bebe, Penelope and Claudia, her grandchildren and extended family in your thoughts and prayers.
Debi is the reason that The Augusta Players not only still exists, but continues to grow and thrive. At a time when the organization faced the possibility of having to close its doors 25 years ago, it was Debi and her dear friend Richard Justice that saved The Players. She has been and always will be a vital part of the DNA of The Players. Her contributions cannot be overstated. In so many ways she was and will continue to be the heart of the organization.
If you talk to anyone that has been part of The Augusta Players over the years, they will tell you about The Players family. Or to be more correct “Framily”. Debi is and will always be the matriarch of that framily. You may move away or move on to different opportunities, but once in The Players you will forever be a part of that framily. She took pride in that. It is because of her that the family feeling exists and we strive to continue that feeling.
She was not only a passionate advocate of the arts, musical theatre and The Players, she was also a consummate singer and actress. Read her biography below, and if you were fortunate enough to see her in any of those performances, take a moment of memory to relive her stunning performances. There were many. Also note the final phrase of that “bio”. Her family was everything to her.
We owe an unpayable debt to Debi Ballas. As JFK said:
“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”
Debi, we will do everything in our power to live up to the generosity of this gift you’ve given us of The Augusta Players.
~ The Staff, Board of Directors and entire Players Framily