There is nothing quite as timelessly elegant, appealing to the eye or pleasing to the ear as is a waltz, and it is on a deep appreciation for the beauty of the music and the rich traditions which have come to surround and envelop it that has allowed it to become the foundation on which one of the most anticipated events of the regional social season has been built: the Wheeling Symphony Auxiliary's Annual Viennese Winter Ball.
This year's upcoming gala will mark the 32nd consecutive year it has been hosted through the effort of the members of the Wheeling Symphony Auxiliary.
Some months prior to the annual mid-winter season event, the dance practices start in earnest, helping transform members of the cotillion into young women and men of grace and of refinement - particularly when it comes to their behavior at both the Patron Party and the Viennese Winter Ball.
T-L Photo/KIM LOCCISANO
Members of the 2013 Viennese Winter Ball Cotillion include high school seniors from across the Ohio Valley area. Front row, from left, are Emmy Weaver, Haley Robb, Samantha Dodd, Ashley Groves, Mallory Fischer, Christina Klug, Meghan Horan, Brett Nanners, McKenna DeChiazza and Taylor Cunningham. Back row, from left, are Scott Burech, Brock Earley, Marc Gittings, Nikhil Dharawat, David Brinsky, Zach Herron, Alexander Gordon, Ben Morano, Randall Dlesk Jr. and Correy Ream.
T-L Photo/KIM LOCCISANO
Four members of this year’s Viennese Winter Ball Cotillion group are seen striking a traditional waltz pose during a recent rehearsal. Members of the Cotillion are all high school seniors. On the left, Emmy Weaver, a student at The Linsly School is partnered for the Cotillion with Scott Burech, a student at Wheeling Park High School. On the right, David Brinsky, who attends The Linsly School, is partnered with Bridgeport resident Mallory Fischer, a student at Bridgeport High School.
T-L Photo/KIM LOCCISANO
Bridgeport residents Cindy Fisher and her daughter, Mallory, take a minute to give their selected formal attire for the upcoming events of the 32nd Annual Viennese Winter Ball and its accompanying Cotillion another look during their recent final fitting at Dee’s Country Bridal Shop on US 250 above Bridgeport. The dress Mallory is wearing is indicative of the jewel tone fabric colors for the dresses worn at the Patron Party by members of the Cotillion. At the ball, the young ladies will wear white ball gowns over hoop skirts. At both events, the young ladies will wear opera length gloves. For the preview event, the gloves are to match the color of the dress. The young men involved in this year’s Cotillion group will be wearing traditional tuxedos.
The two events are held just a week apart.
The Parton Party will be held on the evening of Saturday, Jan. 26, and the ball will be hosted at Oglebay on Saturday, Feb. 2.
Serving as co-chairs of the Viennese Winter Ball Committee for the 2013 event are Wheeling Symphony Auxiliary members Laura Andreini and Sarah Gompers.
Members of the organization serving as chairs of the respective event committees are Cotillion chair Jane Helfer; publicity chair Sherry Hennen; desserts chair Phyllis Sigal; Patron Party co-hairs Vicky Musicaro and Betsy Delk; Intermezzo chair Saun Capehart; sponsors Chair Paula McClure; ball decor co-chairs Ellen Culler and Audrey Irvin; invitations and program chair Jean Bailey; flowers chair Judi Hendrickson; transportation chair Jen Croft; treasurer Roanne Burech; pages chair Hali Exley; and reservations chair Gretchen Hooper.
Details of the annual upcoming event are now being finalized as supporters rally to mark the pending arrival of its 32nd year of being hosted by the local auxiliary members, including the vitally important part in the gala event, "The Cotillion."
The roster of the 20 young Cotillion members for the 2013 event including the following high school seniors:
Taylor Brooke Cunningham is the daughter of Penny and Brian Cunningham of Wheeling. She attends The Linsly School. Her school related activities, memberships and accomplishments include senior class president, head prefect, Latin Honor Society, National Honor Society, West Virginia Junior Classical League President, Key Club, Classics Club, Invisible Children's Club, Animal Shelter Club and yearbook staff. Her hobbies include playing soccer, reading, shopping and more. She hopes to study biology and become a doctor.
McKenna Leigh DeChiazza is the daughter of Sharon and Fred DeChiazza of Wheeling. She is a student at Wheeling Park High School. Her interests include reading, working out and baking. She plans to attend beauty school and join the family business.
Samantha Lynn Dodd is the daughter of Christy and Matt Dodd of Triadelphia and attends Wheeling Park High School. Her activities, interests and accomplishments include Key Club president, Running for a Reason president, secretary of National Honor Society, secretary of Student Council, vice president of Math Club, co-captain of varsity cross country, varsity track, Easter Seals volunteer, and Geography Bowl. Her hobbies include running, reading and volunteering at Easter Seals. She plans to become an industrial engineer and hopes to form her own charity.
Mallory Renee Fischer is the daughter of Cindy and Mark Fischer of Bridgeport. She attends Bridgeport High School. Her school related activities, memberships and interests include marching band, concert band, chorus and girls ensemble, Bridgettes Dance Line, Student Council and National Honor Society. Her hobbies include singing, acting and improvisation and dance. She plans to study musical theater or vocal performance in college.
Ashley Nicole Grove is the daughter of Stephanie and Jeffrey Grove of Wheeling. She attends Wheeling Park High School where her activities and interests include girls varsity soccer team captain, varsity track, freshman mentor, Special Olympics volunteer, Safety Town instructor, participant in Wheeling Youth Leadership, Ski Club and Hi-Y Club. Her interests include snowboarding, athletics, and spending time with family and friends. Following college she plans to pursue a career as an athletic trainer.
Meghan Emily Horan is the daughter of Mary Ann and J. Thomas Horan of Wheeling. She attends Wheeling Park High School where her activities and accomplishments have included varsity soccer, student ambassador, peer mediator, National Honor Society, Hearts at Park, American Cancer Society, Student Council, Key Cub and Ski Club. Her hobbies include snowboarding and playing soccer. Her college plans include majoring in physical therapy and athletic training.
Christina Marie Klug is the daughter of Stephanie and Robert Klug of Wheeling. She attends Wheeling Park High School where her activities, interests and accomplishments include soccer, freshman mentor, National Honor Society, Catholic Charities volunteer, Key Club and Hearts at Park. Her hobbies include playing soccer, reading and spending time with friends and family. She plans to attend West Virginia University and major in biology, and then attend dental school.
Brett Lee Nanners, is the daughter of Stephanie and Ken Nanners of Wheeling. She attends The Linsly School where her activities have included soccer and track. Her hobbies include snowboarding and reading. She plans to attend medical school and pursue a career as a physician.
Haley Marie Robb is the daughter of Sharon Robb of Wheeling. She is a student at Wheeling Park High School where her activities include basketball. Her hobbies include reading, hanging out with friends, volunteering as a basketball coach. She plans to attend law school.
Eleanor Mae Weaver is the daughter of Beth Raimonde Weaver and David Weaver of Wheeling. She is a student at The Linsly School where her activities and accomplishments include varsity tennis, captain of varsity volleyball, vice president of Classics Club, National Honor Society, National Classics/Latin Honor Society, National Forensics League, Key Club and the Animal Shelter Club. Her hobbies and activities include equestrian, skiing, trap shooting and hiking. She hopes to pursue a major in global studies at Dickinson College.
David Robert Brinsky is the son of Dr. Mary Hammond and James Brinsky of Wheeling. He attends The Linsly School where his activities, interests and accomplishments have included cross country team captain, baseball, Key Club, National Honor Society, German Honor Society, International German Language Olympics Finalist, school plays, pep band, and senior prefect. His activities and hobbies include guitar, German studies, running, cooking and skiing. He plans to pursue a career as a professor of German.
Scott Lloyd Burech is the son of Roanne and Harold Burech of Wheeling. He attends Wheeling Park High School. His activities and accomplishments have included cross country, swim team, National Honor Society, Youth Leadership Wheeling, WPHS mentor, Student Council, Spanish Club, Boy's State and I Believe. His hobbies include golfing, cars, and snowboarding. He plans to attend West Virginia University.
Nikhil Madhusudan Dharawat is the son of Amy and Madhu Dharawat of Glen Dale. He attends The Linsly School where his activities and accomplishments have included soccer, tennis, Spanish Club and Key Club. His hobbies include travel with "People to People" and National Youth Leadership Forums. He plans to attend college.
Randall John Dlesk Jr. of Wheeling is the son of Jane and Randy Dlesk. He is a student at The Linsly School where his activities and accomplishments have included soccer and cross country. His hobbies include skateboarding, driving and guitar.
Brock Stephen Earley is the son of Carrie and Dr. W. Jeffery Earley of Moundsville. He attends Central Catholic High School in Wheeling where his accomplishments and activities include varsity football, varsity hockey, varsity and USTA tennis, French Honor Society, Science Bowl, Pontifical Crew, Young Libertarians, and volunteering at Wheeling Hospital's physical therapy department. His hobbies include foreign languages, politics, athletics, reading, cars, weight-lifting and astronomy. He plans to attend The Ohio State University, Virginia Military Institute or the University of Southern California. He hopes to major in physics and neuroscience, and minor in political science.
Marc Richmond Gittings is the son of Brenda and Lawrence "Marc" Gittings of Cameron, and is a student at The Linsly School. His activities and accomplishments include varsity swimming, serving as captain of Linsly's varsity swim team; the National Forensics League, Key Club, senior prefect, lacrosse, Upper School plays, student ambassador, Easter Seals/Ride with Pride, tutoring, the children's museum of the Ohio Valley, declamation, Mount Olivet United Methodist Church and mission trips. His hobbies include scuba diving, piano, motocross, hiking, and pep band. He plans to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering or physical therapy.
Alexander Louis Gordon, is the son of Valleri and Brian Gordon of Wheeling. He is homeschooled. His activities and interests include football, basketball, and serving as pianist and organist for several area churches. His activities include guitar, piano, mandolin, ukulele, music composition, and playing street hockey. He plans to pursue a degree in music composition.
Zachary Daniel Herron is the son of Dina and Bob Herron of Wheeling. He attends The Linsly School where his interests and accomplishments have included hockey, travel hockey and lacrosse. He enjoys working with Wheeling Nailers hockey. His collegiate plans include academic and athletic pursuits.
Benjamin John Morano of Wheeling is the son of Jessica Ybanez - Morano and Edgar B. Morano. He is a student at The Linsly School where his activities and accomplishments have included soccer, lacrosse and100 hours of volunteering at Wheeling Hospital. His memberships have included Key Club, German Club, National Honor Society and prefect. He plans to attend college.
Correy Michael Ream is the son of Carolyn and Dr. Thomas Ream of Wheeling. He attends Wheeling Park High School. His activities and accomplishments have included snowboarding, mountain biking, working for the Wheeling Park Commission and as a "Learn to Skate" program assistant. He is a student pilot, enjoys restoring antique cars, and designing and constructing rooms, porches and small buildings. He has been accepted to Embry Riddle University in Florida and Kent State University. His areas of study will include majors in aeronautical science and flight technology, and minors in aeronautical science and also maintenance and mechanics.
Volunteering for the Symphony is a great way to help the community, gain good experience, meet new people and enjoy wonderful music, say event organizers.
Volunteering for the Symphony will involve, but is not limited to ushering a minimum of two concerts during the school year. Ushering a concert means that you will be helping concert patrons before the concert actually begins by opening and holding doors, helping patrons find their seats and assisting the Wheeling Symphony office staff with whatever they may need help with. Ushers are dismissed once the concert begins but are welcome to stay and enjoy the concert at no cost. Other duties may include, but are not limited to, assisting at the Patron Party and Viennese Winter Ball in January and February and helping at the 4th of July concert and in the Symphony Office.
Continuing another of the event traditions is the naming of several official pages for the event.
By tradition, these young ladies will assist with serving the sumptuous buffet dinner presented during the Patron Party, held at Oglebay Institute's Stifel Fine Arts Center on National Road in Wheeling one week prior to the formal ball at Glessner Auditorium in Oglebay Park and Resort's beautifully appointed Wilson Lodge.
The Patron Party, while still a formal event in and of itself, is slightly less formal an event than is the actual ball, which is held a week later.
On the evening of the actual ball, pages will have additional duties including personally greeting each guest with a curtsy upon their arrival at the gala event and assisting with seating. Several other duties they will have will include the selling of Intermezzo raffle tickets and participating in the always popular Parade of Desserts at the formal ball.
Pages for the 2013 Viennese event include Alexandra Buch, the daughter of Samantha and James Buch of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Emily Capehart, the daughter of Saun and Robin Capehart of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Elizabeth Hooper, the daughter of Gretchen and Mike Hooper of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Annemarie Krall, the daughter of Robert and Peggy Krall of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; Karen Laska, the daughter of Tadeusz and Mary Laska of Wheeling, attends Wheeling Park High School; and Jackie McDermott, daughter of Greg and Laurie McDermott of Wheeling, attends The Linsly School.
The waltz is the oldest of the ballroom dances, and has been around since the mid-eighteenth century. It was first introduced into the ballrooms of the world in the early years of the nineteenth century, and was met with outraged indignation, as it was the first dance where the couple danced in a modified closed position - indicated by the man's hand around the waist of the lady.
Beginning about 1830, the waltz was given a tremendous boost by two Austrian composers Lanner and Strauss. They set the standard for the Viennese Waltz, a very fast version played at about 55 - 60 measures per minute. It is not known exactly when the waltz was introduced to the United States, but it is widely thought that it likely made its way to New York and Philadelphia at about the same time, and by the middle of the nineteenth century was firmly established in United States society.
For additional information about the event or to make a reservation, call 304-242-8738, Gretchen Hooper, reservations committee chair.