The Cotillion Ball

Last night was my daughter’s spring ball with her cotillion group.  What is cotillion, you ask?  Manners class.  Dance class.  The formal training to whip our youth into shape. 🙂

I only know of this organization because as a youth, I was forced to attend myself.  My first year was in ninth grade and I didn’t know a soul.  The cotillion teacher happened to be a close friend of my Aunt Jan, a grand cotillion mistress herself, so having my brothers, sister and I join the club seemed to be a no-brainer.  For everyone else but us, that is!  You want me to dance with boys?  Boys I don’t even know?

Ugh.  The horror!  But alas, I must confess, I am forever grateful.  As an adult, this training has served me well.  Through the years there has been occasion where I was glad to know how to follow a man’s moves on the dance floor without looking the fool.  I was glad to be able to reply “yes” when the handsome fellow asked me to dance.  Cha-cha?  Of course I cha-cha!  Who doesn’t?

My daughter is now in middle school and like her parent before her, is forced to attend cotillion.  Do I have to go?  I hate it!

Yes, dear.  Once a month, it’s not going to kill you.  You’ll thank me later.  Good thing I can wait.  The child is not happy, though you couldn’t tell from this image, now can you?

And all of the young ladies looked divine, especially when escorted by their equally fine clad young gentlemen!

The attire for this ball was quite formal, with a black and white theme.  T he boys rented tuxedos and the girls secured beautiful ball gowns.  Most are probably bridesmaid dresses or prom wear, but it was fun to dress up.  Even my child will admit to that.

Next month?  They’ll have a fifties swing-fling. Not sure why we’re still stuck on the fifties.  That worked for my parents–they lived the music!  But me?  I have no poodle skirt stuffed into the back of my closet.  No saddle shoes or hair bows.  Hmph.  Perhaps I’ll be making my way to the thrift store.

Because it is fun.  Just to prove it, the cotillion headmistress allowed her third year students to line dance.

A kid’s gotta have some fun, right?  Absolutely!  Dulls the pain and convinces them to come back next year! 

Actually, once these kids get the hang of ballroom dancing, they tend to enjoy it.  Oddly enough, especially the boys. 🙂

Poor Daddy…  (Get your hands off my daughter.)  But he, too, will survive.  Besides, everything is more fun when you have friends with you, right?  Our grand scheme for next year’s grand ball?

Enlist some friends to sign up for cotillion, of course!  How about you?  Ever endure the dreaded cotillion ball?


Posted on March 12, 2012, in Blog Posts and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I did not endure cotillion, however we did sign my 7th grade boy up last year. Ours was once a week for either 6 or 8 weeks, I can’t remember exactly. 7th grade was all dancing and 8th grade they do more dancing and manners. We never made it to 8th grade. Never, not once, did my son look a girl in the eye. He giggled with his friends, did the absolute minimum not to get thrown out of class, and hated every single second of his Sunday nights at cotillion. Several of his friends enjoyed it and moved on to 8th grade, but we decided not to throw good money after bad. He’s destined to sit out a dance or follow his father’s lead and do the white man’s overbite.

  2. LOL. Barely a direct-eye in the room, tis true! Some of the 7th grade boys were even trying to kick each other–and these were the boys who had advanced to performing alongside the symphony in downtown Orlando! Or something like that, but a real honor, to be sure.

    Go figure. All I can say is that I’m almost glad they’re not TOO interested in each other at this point, if you know what I mean. 🙂

  3. I loved this because I didn’t even know they had cotillions any longer. How cool. I think my 13-year-old daughter might like this, but I’m not sure. I would have been mortified at that age, especially since I went to an all-girls Catholic school where we got demerits for talking to boys!

    • AGH! You definitely would have been a “look the other way” kinda gal! Who me? No, I’m NOT dancing with this boy 6 inches shorter than me. My poor baby girl. One day she’ll be glad she’s tall.

  4. I have never seen the word except in books. Either we don’t have them in Canada, or I’ve just never been privy to their world.

    I loved your daughter’s dress, Dianne. She looks so beautiful and grown up. 🙂

  5. Neither of my kids were eager to attend cotillion. But my son just signed up for something similar in college. They focus on table manners with a little toastmaster’s thrown in. The goal is to better prepare them for the business lunch or dinner. I’m pretty sure my son signed up for the free five course dinners, though.

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