Friday, October 31, 2008

25 Traumhafte Stunden - Stainach Maturaball

The theme of this year's Maturaball (for the difference between a Maturaball and prom--and more photos--click here) was "25 heavenly hours" because on the night of October 25 we set our clocks back one hour to European Standard Time. I told the students they were so lucky... most people only get an extra hour of SLEEP.

This year, the Stainach Maturaball and the Liezen Maturaball were scheduled for the same day, and there was no way to go to both. The girls at the BAKIP understood when I told them there were boys at the Stainach ball!

The evening officially kicked off with a Polonaise, a complicated formal dance performed by the seniors. The girls were dressed in white dresses with white gloves, and the boys were in suits with blue ties and white gloves. The students selected "White Rabbit" by Jefferson Airplane to begin their Polonaise. Throughout the evening they played songs that reminded me of junior high school dances (Highway to Hell, You're the One that I Want from Grease)

After the Polonaise the students asked their teachers to dance. I was invited to dance by two boys from the 8A class. This is the same class that included me in their yearbook (I nearly cried!) and found me a date for the evening, religious studies colleague Reinhold.

Between the Polonaise and the Midnight Entertainment, I chatted with students, past and present. It was nice to see the students who graduated last spring and to hear what they're up to these days. And everyone, all the students and faculty, looks soooooo different when they're dressed up!

The big difference, of course, from prom is that in Austria, you can drink beer and wine at 16 years old, and the hard stuff at 18. Several bars were set up throughout the building, one serving champagne, one cocktails, one schnapps. Students bought me a Vodka-Red Bull. Can't say as I recommend it, reminds me a little of Dramamine!

At midnight, the seniors performed a skit that they wrote and produced themselves. The premise was that the devil and an angel were vying for the souls of six senior boys. I will have to make a link to the video when they put it up on YouTube. It was really well done, and the ending included three of my colleagues who played David Hasselhof and the Baywatch Babes who saved the day!

Although I wish we could have stayed longer, at 2:00 am (when we set the clocks back) I got a ride home from neighbors in Irdning. Probably for the better, because in the wee hours of the morning the students tend to drink a little too much and do stupid things. And last year, you may remember, I had to take the Discobus with all the drunken students!

So, all in all, it was a lovely evening! And we had Monday off to recover from all the champagne and the time change!

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