December 19, 2010 –better known as 1860, at least in the world of Loudoun Valley High School’s History Club.
“Victorian Ball is History Club’s recreation of a 19th-century ball. It’s a way for members to experience the etiquette and characteristics of the Victorian era,” said History Club Treasurer Courtney Coombs, a senior.
History Club members who wish to participate in Victorian Ball must pay a small fee and attend dance and etiquette sessions to help set the Victorian mood on the night of the dance.
“Those interested in Victorian Ball must attend one dance practice and one etiquette training session. In addition, they must pay a fee of $25. It is expected that members attend in period costumes that can be purchased, rented, or self-tailored,” said President Kate Babcock, also a senior.
In order to recreate the Victorian era, the History Club rents out a period building and decorates it accordingly. This year, Victorian Ball will be held at Buchanan Hall, located in Upperville, Virginia, and will be a Christmas-themed masquerade.
“Dance instructors are brought in to teach students period dances such as the waltz. Music is provided by a group which plays instrumental pieces. Costumes, decorations, and etiquette allow our members to go back in time,” Babcock said.
Given the economic times, History Club officers are trying to cut down on the members’ expenses as much as possible.
“Currently, we’re finding inexpensive ways to make the costumes, which will be taught at our optional costume workshop,” Babcock said.
Practices for Victorian Ball will begin on November 9th and be held on various dates leading up to the dance.
“We currently have around thirty people interested in Victorian Ball, so we feel confident that people are still up to the challenge [of paying, attending practices and assembling the proper costumes],” said Babcock.
Lauren Pichon is a senior at Loudoun Valley High School. She is involved in the History Club and school newspaper and hopes to pursue a career in print journalism.