By Claire Gearhart
On Fri., March 16, Batavia High School held its ninth annual “Rock the Runway” show where students compete in a competition to see who can make the best dress or accessory item without fabric or any other conventional item and ended with freshman Preston Williams winning the show.
Lots of planning and work goes into setting up the show. A team of seven creative directors, Students who apply to be a creative director are voted on by the previous creative directors, and the school’s local studio club, run by Beth Walker, all work together to recruit designers, decorate the BFAC lobby, sell tickets, and just about anything else that can be imagined goes into putting together a show. The planning, however, is left up to the students chosen to be creative directors.
“As one of seven creative directors, we basically plan the entire show,” said creative director Maecy Ashmore “We choose the theme and start working in spring for the next year’s show. Everyone has different roles, but as a team we get the music picked out, the programs designed, posters, invitations, tickets and signs made, design the lobby, plan out the stage design and the lighting, and organize the show so that it will run smoothly,” According to Beth Walker the show was a huge success, pulling in enough money to continue to produce the show the next year, and to continue BHS’s art programs.
As for the actual show, there are a couple different awards that the contestants can earn. There are two categories in the actual show – accessories and dresses – that pieces can be entered in to. The awards offered up are people’s choice award, one for accessories and one for dresses, where the attendees of the show are given one ticket stub for each category to put in a bag with the designer’s name on it. There is also the option for the people to put in money, where one dollar is equal to one vote. The designer with the most votes wins the people’s choice for the category.
As for the judging, the designers have the opportunity to win a certain amount of money for the place they are given. First place winner of accessories wins $50; first place winner in the fashion category wins $150, second place wins $100, and 3rd place wins $50.
“Judges are chosen in two ways: First, we invite the previous year’s creative directors that have graduated back to judge… Then we invite local artists and arts community leaders to balance out the rest of the panel,” said art teacher Dawn Zalkus.
The winning dresses are usually on display in the BFAC for some time after the show. Most students who do the show for one year continue to do it throughout their entire high school experience. The designers and viewers are all in love with the show and happy to see its legacy coming to life.
“It is a big responsibility but I wish I could stay for 20 more years and continue these tasks. It is such a rewarding experience,” said another creative director Kendal Ducoff.
“Going forward, I just want to be able to look back at this experience later in my life and appreciate the wonderful opportunity to be involved in this amazing event,” Ducoff said. “I really don’t know where I would be today without it.”