University of Rochester

EVENT: Annual Viennese Ball Promises an Evening in Old Vienna

October 30, 2007

Alles Walzer! With that formal command to hit the dance floor, the annual Viennese Ball at the University of Rochester will begin at 9 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10, in a Wilson Commons student center awash in black ties and taffeta.

Since its inception as a small celebration of the waltz and Austrian formality in 1985, the Viennese Ball has mushroomed into one of the University's most elegant social affairs, attracting hundreds of ballroom dancers eager to experience a touch of magic and romance in three-quarter time.

Open to the public, and now drawing more people than ever from outside the University community with its "Evening in Old Vienna" theme, the ball is sponsored by the University Chamber Orchestra and the University Chamber Singers.

In addition to a performance of selections from the Brahms Liebeslieder Waltzer by the chamber singers during an orchestra break, the event this year will feature a waltz exhibition by the Botsford Ballroom Dance Team, a local group of nationally-ranked dancers between the ages of 16 and 21.

For participants caught up the ballroom dance craze sweeping the country, the University's Ballroom Dance Club and Swing Dance Club will for the first time ensure that dances other than the waltz are available while preserving the formal air of the festivities.

Light refreshments will be served and door prizes awarded from community organizations, including the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and Barnes & Noble. Couples may spin, shuffle, and glide across the dance floor until midnight, when a balloon drop will cap the evening.

Admission to the Viennese Ball is $10 in advance and $13 at the door. Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Common Market in Wilson Commons or online at

Proceeds benefit the University Chamber Orchestra and the University Chamber Singers. The orchestra, directed by Professor of Music David Harman, performs free concerts on the River Campus and has entertained in Rochester and around the world. The chamber singers, conducted by Irina Georgieva, have toured the country.

For more information on the Viennese Ball and the Chamber Orchestra or Chamber Singers, contact Josef Hanson in the Department of Music at (585) 273-5157.