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Waltz, Strauss and imperial elegance: a brief summary of the 2020 Viennese Ball of the DACH Society

Updated: Feb 1, 2020

by Marlen Pezzetta

Bruges got its own dose of Viennese glitz last weekend when the D-A-CH Society invited the College of Europe community for its annual Viennese Ball.

Saturday 18th of January 2020: as crowning of the German, Austrian and Swiss National Week of the College of Europe, the D-A-CH Society received 350 fellow students and alumni at Het Entrepot, Bruges, for a convivial evening of classical music and elegant dances.

After a short welcome word, the members of the D-A-CH Society entered to the sound of the classic Fächerpolonaise, before opening the floor to the immortal tunes of “An der Schönen Blauen Donau”. Sounding the traditional command “Alles Walzer!”, the dancefloor quickly filled up and couples shuffled through Waltz after Waltz. The two dance lessons organised by the students during the week seemed to pay off, as the floor never emptied till the early morning hours. Gustav Kwintett, the young and crisp ensemble from Ghent, brought the waltzing melodies to life with youthful energy and put their own spin on it. A pleasant experience for the musicians as well as the dancers: “We usually play classics, with more sedentary audiences”, quipped one of the string players, “so it’s really refreshing to have people actually move to what we play for once.”

The evening continued with the music band of the College, The Nightwatchers, who brought the crowd to a boil with some good ol’ fashioned Rock’n’Roll. The Mitternachtsquadrille clearly appeared to be the icing on the cake that night. Under expert guidance from Vienna and Bohemia, the guests started soon twisting and turning with laughs and enthusiasm to the traditional Fledermaus Quadrille. Last but not least, a DJ took over the music for the pleasure of the dancers, who revelled until morning light.

The D-A-CH Society would like to thank the City of Vienna for its generous support, together with the Deutsch-Französische Hochschule and the Raiffeisen Bank, who kindly contributed to the great success of the Viennese Ball and the D-A-CH National Week 2020 at the College of Europe.


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