SPRINGFIELD, Vt. – Linking arms and reeling off a series of Rockette-like kicks, the young men of the 2018 Apple Blossom Cotillion danced in formation as the young women Cotillion contestants moved in a circle behind them, matching their steps to the music of “Beauty and the Beast.” Now rehearsing in their final few days before the performances of “Apple Blossom on the Big Screen” at Riverside School on May 4 and 5, the contestants and their escorts are putting the finishing touches on routines they started learning last January.
“It’s been a lot of work, but also really fun,” said Sofia Gulick, one of the contestants. “The best part has just been interacting with everyone – I’ll miss that part when the rehearsals are over.”
Echoing Gulick’s sentiments, the Director of the cotillion, Madison Moreau, said, “This is a great group of dancers – they really stay focused and work hard. I’ll miss the group when this is over!”
Moreau, who is new to the cotillion this year, says the event has also helped her make connections in the community. “It’s been an extraordinary way for me to get into living in a new place,” she said. “People have been great!”
A dance instructor with a degree in dance and psychology from Hampshire College, Moreau has the ultimate goal of operating her own dance school. “I just want to keep dancing!” she smiled.
Competing for the title of Apple Blossom Queen this year are: Ainsley Bertone, Elizabeth Chambers, Kylee Charest, Alyssa Ellison, Sofia Gulick, Gillian Guy, London Heiden, Alexis Morin, Hailey Rabtoy, Eliza Rounds, Madelyn Stagner, Samantha Stoddard, and Laura Wentworth. The high schoolers will again be joined by junior Cotillioneers, a group of 25 elementary school students. Larry Kraft will be the event’s master of ceremonies for the 18th consecutive year.
The Apple Blossom Cotillion is a fundraiser for Springfield Hospital. The proceeds from this popular event provide support for the Dr. E. Sherburne Lovell Health Career award and services of the hospital.