The Authentic Illinois Membership Ball and Debutante Cotillion is a celebration of custom: the membership is marking its 123rd anniversary, the ball is its 117th.
A part of this heritage is household, and this yr’s King and Queen Illinois aren’t any exception. Miss Anya Isabella Rose Knudson Washington, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Washington II and Ms. Krystal Knudsen of New Orleans, was Queen Illinois 2018. Queen Anya’s household has lengthy historical past with OIC: her great-grandfather, Dr. Otto Wesley Duncan Sr. was King Illinois 1958; grandmother Mrs. Rogerwene Duncan Washington, Queen Illinois 1963; aunt Mrs. Rogerwene Washington Gifford, Queen Illinois 1991. Queen Anya’s grandfather, Mr. William James Washington, King Illinois 2001, was additionally going to be King Illinois 2018, however he handed away in October 2017. The membership gave tribute to Mr. Washington by honoring his place on the throne, and by presentation of a prayer track carried out by Mrs. Denise Tartt-Reid, an OIC Debutante maid within the 1984 royal courtroom.
The ball tableau, “Jack Conrad’s Voodoo on the Bayou,” illustrated a second in African-American historical past. It mixed the story of Jack Conrad, a civil conflict hero who, with others, led a labor strike in Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes, and Voodoo, the faith of the African slaves from the Western area of Africa.
The tableau story unfolded with a Rougarou casting a spell on the members of the OIC, declaring that there can be no ball until heroes from the previous noticed match to reverse it. The members known as upon their heroes Jack Conrad and Marie Laveau, who was thought-about a non secular drive in New Orleans, for assist. Jack Conrad’s position was performed by OIC member Dr. Robert R. Newsome, Sr. and Marie Laveau was carried out by 2013 OIC Queen Miss Jade Dedeaux. Along with Jack Conrad, a voodoo doll ritual, and particular celebratory African dance carried out by Bamboula 2000, the spell was lifted and the ball continued. (An look in a while by Dr. John DeSantis, creator of “The Thibodaux Bloodbath,” additional knowledgeable friends in regards to the historical past of Jack Conrad and the sugar cane strike of 130 years in the past.)
The looks of the 2018 ball Captain, Coco Robicheaux, characterised by Mr. Tracey L. Thibodaux Sr., signaled the opening of the ball, adopted by the lighting of the OIC crest. Accompanying the ball Captain had been his heralds, Misses Rayven Payton and Rayion Payton. The Grasp of Ceremony, Mr. E.J. Roberts, started with a quick membership historical past adopted by the introduction of the Authentic Illinois Membership members and their girls by membership President Mr. Lynn J. Dedeaux, and the reappearance of Queen Illinois 2017 Lauren Kennedi Ozie Dixon and choose members of her courtroom to look at the ball.
Earlier than Queen Anya made her look, her courtroom was launched: royal maids had been Misses Kaitlyn Elizabeth August and Brice Milanne Berger, and debutantes had been Misses Alyssa Marie Lastrapes, Andi Alyssa Robinson, Victoria Marie Devore Thomas, and Jaya Rene Younger,
Additionally included within the courtroom had been King Illinois 2018 pages Misses Imari Corriane Felix and Zoe Reese Smallwood, and queen’s pages Misses Sky Angel Paxton, and Jamie Christina Barnes.
After particular recognitions of OIC members and choose friends, OIC President Dedeaux supplied the normal royal toast. Afterwards, Queen Illinois and her escort, Jack Conrad, maids and debutantes escorted by OIC members did a promenade to “If Ever I Stop to Love,” adopted by the normal membership waltz, The Chicago Glide, to the music of “Dance, Dance Queen Illinois.” This dance was carried out on the membership’s first ball and debutante cotillion in 1895.
The ball concluded with a particular waltz by OIC members and their girls, visitor callouts, and common dancing with an look by the Stooges Brass Band.