Balls are a common occurrence in St Andrews, and the KKC have long held a monopoly over the most extravagant / over-hyped events, depending on how you view them. The tried and tested formula of alcohol, “dancy” music and black tie once again proved a success with the class of 2017 but sadly lacked originality.
When I interviewed the ball convenor, Chris Kunkler, I must admit I had my doubts. His vague hints on what to expect were intriguing to say the least but made it downright impossible to write an article when there were a lot of things to be confirmed two or three weeks before the event. Yet last night he pulled it off in spectacular fashion.
With the champagne reception beginning at 8pm, we were warned to arrive promptly as supplies would run out fast. Having attended the ball previously, however, I decided not to go until a bit later, when the party had truly started. I was too late for the promised entrance to the sound of highland pipers and the champagne, so can’t comment on that, but from the number of plastic glasses smashed on the floor it looked as though there had been plenty to go around.
As I entered the tent, I was impressed to see that it was rather like the VIP section of last year’s May Ball. From an exceedingly friendly Owl Eyes photo booth in one corner to free Janettas ice cream opposite, there were all the makings of a good night. The bar lined the long far wall, so queues moved fast. The posting of price lists up on the wall seemed to speed up ordering although there was a limited selection of drinks (and no tequila). Instead, there was a separate section of the bar just for cocktails, which I thought was a nice if unnecessary touch. The dancefloor was huge, and while not packed was definitely getting there. Seedy Soundsystem really got the crowd going and everyone seemed to be dancing along to their unique mix of DJ-ing and live music.
The downside about having a ball on Lower College Lawn is the fact that you have to leave the venue and go back up the steps to the Quad to use the bathrooms. A few drunken revellers seemed to be finding this difficult, leaving a puddle of vomit on the stairs. With plenty of floor length dresses, this was a recipe for disaster.
Another thing I found totally unforgivable was the sheer rudeness of the KKC. Yes, it’s your party, and yes, you can do whatever you like – but that does not include pushing and swearing at drunk girls to get to the front of the stage.
So, should you have gone? Well, if you came to St Andrews wanting to feel like a princess-to-be, then yes. And if you’re a returning student, then it was definitely not just a party for freshers. Long story short, everyone knows that the KKC know how to throw a party. It’s just a shame that their presence tends to ruin it.
Photo credit: Caralina Wonnacott. For more photos, check out our roving photographer Sammi McKee’s pics!