Few things rankle students quite as much as spending money. Although we happily shell out nearly £100 for a fashion show or black tie dinner, many guests balked at the £25 non-resident price tag for this year’s Casino Royale.
Admittedly, it was a dangerous decision on the part of the committee to charge all attendees for a ticket rather than only non-residents; in the past, the DRA / FP ball has been famously free to residents. The unpopularity of this change could be seen in the weeks leading up to the ball, as the committee desperately lowered the price in a sudden “Valentine’s Day sale” and kept ticket sales going until 48 hours before the event. Last year, the ball sold out within days, with resale tickets going for over £30 rather than the heavily discounted £10 that many guests offered.
All this considered, it was with admittedly low expectations that I arrived at Lower College Lawn this past Friday evening. It was to my pleasant surprise, however, that the ball proved to be absolutely wonderful.
The marquee itself stretched across the entirety of Lower College Lawn, filled with bars and sofas and a suitably sexy photo booth. From the beginning of the night, the massive dance floor was filled with black tie clad revellers, at first thanks to the musical stylings of The Other Guys. The town’s most popular a cappella group performed a classic lineup of songs that featured the peerless “St Andrews Girls,” and spent the rest of the night mingling with the crowd.
On the heels of TOG, the dance floor soon swayed to the tunes of Franco, the band of the night. Franco was nothing short of brilliant, an excellent discovery on the part of the committee. Following their performance, the mix of expected dance songs proved to be somewhat of a letdown, but by that point in the night many guests were too tipsy to mind.
The ticket price, although irksome, was also justified by the amount of freebies provided to guests. A drink, ice cream and a full Blackhorn meal were offered to the majority of ticket holders, more than making up for the relatively meagre amount that we spent on wristbands. Dancing in a marquee filled with 007-themed paraphernalia ranging from roulette tables to burlesque performers, it was difficult to view the evening as anything other than a fantastic night out.
Photos by Piers Moss.