May Ball Preview

Early on this week I met with Chris Kunkler, this year’s May Ball Convenor. We spoke about expectations for the night and the atmosphere he’s looking to create. Though I’m biased, as he once cooked me pasta in exchange for history notes, I admit that I felt pretty excited after our conversation. Hopefully you, reader, will feel the same. Chris and the rest of the society, have endeavoured to provide the guests with a fantastic time, irrespective of the ticket they’ve purchased.


In my mind, this hype is mostly down to Adam Dyment, better known to the house-music-listening-public as Duke Dumont. The main act, this DJ has really popularised the new wave of house music that those edgy types listen to on Soundcloud during tutorials. This shouldn’t detract from the appeal of the rest of the evening. Much thought has gone into making a VIP a worthwhile ticket. Everyone with Classic tickets can ride the dodgems, lose their phone on La Bamba, and listen to the Duke. That sounds like a decent night if you ask me! The classy types shelling out the extra £25 will have a variety of musical acts to choose from – from folksy types with acoustic guitars to hip hip-hop tunes. Hopefully the Very Important Person Area (VIPA) will be a Very Interesting Place Also (VIPA2).

arnie may ball

The writer himself getting in the party mood for last year’s event. Doesn’t he look dashing? Photo courtesy of Alex Mackintosh. Leg’s owner unknown, presumed missing. 

This year’s ball has seen a few changes. FIXR, created by ex-St Andrews students, has proved a success for the organisers and the app’s developers. In this digital age, not everyone needs to queue outside the bandstand at 4am. In addition, the ticket re-pricing seems to be a fair response to rising costs and the guests’ varying expectations. As Chris pointed out, unlike other universities, St Andrews has only one summer ball; this year approximately 2,000 people are attending. It’s a little much to expect them all to have identical standards. Here’s hoping that the vast majority truly enjoy the event.

My final recommendation, for anyone at all, is to check out Duke Dumont. I’m sure his brand of listenable house-garage isn’t for anyone, but if you want to get prepared, check out his songs, his remixes and his mixes here. Street Walker is a personal favourite.