Opening Ball is the first ball of the year and promises to bring together champagne and extravagance in marquees on Lower College Lawn. There was a great feeling of excitement walking through St Salvator’s quad, as enthusiastic freshers eagerly filled the marquees hoping for their first experience of luxury at a St Andrews ball; it was truly a moment to remember how beautiful our town is.
I felt quite hesitant going to Opening Ball as a second year, as it’s generally known to be dominated by first years; however, the event exceeded my expectations as I truly had a memorable night. For those who managed to arrive on time, there was a champagne reception and a piper, which was a wonderful start to the night. The prevailing landscape of the outfits at the ball was of one lacking in experimentation–which is relatively standard for a well-established event like Opening Ball. Everyone followed the black tie guidelines, most girls recycling prom dresses while the guys stuck to the classic black tux with hints of tartan trousers here and there. Long dresses seemed to be the the preferred choice for most, with heels that were abandoned by several girls during the night.
One of the highlights of the event was of course the food. The offer of popcorn, candy floss, ice cream, crepes and of course Blackhorn, a classic, was enough to satisfy any food-lover. The queues for the bar were surprisingly short, and the drink prices were very reasonable compared to some other St Andrews events. The marquee itself was adequately decorated – the lights on the tent were a very nice touch and created a beautiful setting. Yet, by the end of the evening, the luxury marquee was completely littered with plastic cups, an aspect of ball culture that is seemingly inevitable but ultimately easy enough to ignore.
The headline act 8:Bit provided a fun set with their unique sound, delivering a well thought-out set of house music which the crowd evidently enjoyed. The other DJs of the night prior to 8:Bit were enjoyable, though some transitions were questionable, which was slightly disappointing, but certainly did not ruin the excitement they created. The night seemed to lack diversity in the genres of music played; however, the music still set a good vibe and the overall consensus was that everyone had a great time dancing.
As a whole Opening Ball 2017 was a great success and I will definitely be attending next year for another memorable night.
All photos taken by Melissa Leigh Church and Grace Grosheider Gathright for Owl Eyes Magazine.