In back-to-back Carnival balls held in the Royal Tent at the New Orleans Country Club, a brace of radiant queens, debutantes of the season, reigned. Hailed as her majesty on a Friday at Olympians 2015 masked ball was Miss Claire Michelle Zeringue, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Wayne George Zeringue Jr. The following evening, Caliphs of Cairo paid queenly tribute to Miss Emily Elizabeth Tastet, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Anthony Tastet. Their immediate predecessors were Misses Hannah Douglass Tyler and Elizabeth Lancaster Dunlap.
Rollin’ on the River
The majesty of the Mississippi got thematic play at the Olympians annual ball when the early paddle steamers arriving in the port of New Orleans were recalled. Today, the Crescent City is home to a pair of paddle wheelers, the Creole Queen and the Natchez, which showcase the glory of a bygone era. The Olympians called for a celebration of “these two glorious ladies.”
Certainly one glorious lady was celebrated, joining his majesty on the throne. That was Miss Zeringue, whose court maids were Misses Caroline Elizabeth Bossier, Greer Elizabeth McKendrick, Sarah Barclay Nelson and Caroline Suzette Robin. The pages were Masters Joseph Ross Trask, Leon J. Reymond IV and Jacob Alexander Schorr.
Nine princesses completed the court: Misses Katherine Therese Barket, Alyssa Odile Basilo, Juliet Taney Boyd, Gianna Lourdes Brown, Elizabeth Marie Daly, Mackenzie Elizabeth Pighetti, Emery Cate Reymond, Elaina Marin Lawhead and Christine Elizabeth Lawhead.
Mr. Arthur S. Mann III served as general chairman of the ball with assistance from Messrs. James J. Crane, Bret A. Clesi, Mark A. Adams, Charles T. Walsten, Rene Dupaquier and Thomas J. Mitchell.
Ilaine Hartman created the A-line gown of queen Claire, designing it as an asymmetric tunic over several layers of silk organza with a sweetheart decollete. It was made of French-embroidered tulle with seed pearls and bugle beads and further embellished with Swarovski Austrian rhinestones and crystals. Among her royal accessories were the glittering collar, mantle, and crown and scepter of the organization.
The queen’s mother, Susan Zeringue, chose a gown of navy illusion with a mermaid flared skirt and sweep train designed by Montage for Mon Cheri. She was joined in her box seating by the royal grandmothers Ms. Eleanor R. Anderson and Mrs. Wayne G. Zeringue. Nearby were Mmes. Richard Q. Flick, John F. White, Clayton C. Geary with daughter Courtney, William H. Hines with Ashland, Daniel H. Housey with Hailey, Craig W. Smith, Dane S. Ciolino and Gregory G. Rittiner. Also, Misses Leah Katherine Whann, Charlotte Lane Langenstein, Carly Maher, Kristen Kern, Laura Nance and the 2014 queen, Miss Tyler.
Dancing was to the music of the Jimmy Maxwell Orchestra.
Noted, too, (with some in from away) were Mmes. William Gordon, Gene Taylor, William A. Gordon II, Louis Cian, Virginia Pruet, James Keating, Mark Uram, Charles Elliott, Zachary Fanberg, Kurt Schlotterer, and Kurt Wiese. Applauding all of the general pomp and pageantry as well were Mmes. Donald G. Charbonnet, Arthur Seldon Mann III, James Judson Crane, Michael Daly, Christopher Mann, C. Layton Merritt III, Andre Mouledoux, Ewell C. Potts III, Rene Dupaquier, Doug Tyler, George Douglass Jr., John J. Dardis, David Haydel Jr., Jeffrey Brennan, Glenn Landrum, Thomas J. Mitchell, Bret A. Clesi, Mark Adams and Ms. Yvette Monju. Many were wearing the ball favor of a silver-plated paddlewheeler crafted by India Stewart of India Stewart Designs.
They, as did countless others, delighted in the “Rollin’ on the River” tableau written by Melissa Steiner.
From the Royal Tent, guests strolled to the adjacent country club for the Queen’s Supper and all of its related liveliness, much of it generated by the show band, BRW, The Recording Artist. For hours, guests made took to the dance floor to revel in “Rollin’” and the royalty of Claire and his majesty.
Union of the Crowns
The crowns of England, Scotland and Wales have been united under a single monarch since the Acts of Union in 1707. Prior to that, there was much contention and sometimes war. In 1603, the crowning of James I of England produced a monarch who would rule for years and, among other endeavors and achievements, encourage the works of William Shakespeare. Depicted on the cover of the ball’s program (with artwork by Patricia “Patsy” Hardin) was the Globe Theatre in London and a number of costumed actors.
No “double, double toil and trouble” (from “Macbeth,” which was inspired by the king’s provenance and his obsession with witchcraft) occurred at the Caliphs of Cairo ball. Rather, it was “She’s beautiful and therefore to be woo’d” (“Henry VI”) that prevailed as all eyes beheld the queen, Miss Tastet, and her court. Repeating royalty, queen Emily wore the crown in 2009 at the Children’s Carnival Club. Her king was Austin Grant Eckles Brackett.
The Caliphs maids were Misses Caroline Elizabeth Bossier, Lane-Larkin Davis, Sydney Alexandra Lowe, Gabrielle Cheyenne Turner and Mallory Ann Young. The cortege was completed with, as ladies in waiting, Misses Ashley Frances Bossier, Laura Elaine Bruce, Juliet Eliana Detiveaux Cimini, Monica Carolyn Growden, Heidi Frances Hayne, Alyce Louise Iglesias, Isabella Veronica Koclanes, Lauren Lee Paysse, Claire Elizabeth Rosamond, Katherine Elizabeth Verlander, and Madeline Cecelia Zimmer; and princesses Pellegrina Ann Vaughn Cimini, Chloe Alexander D’Angelo, Anna Sofia Hayne, Katherine Maria Kleehammer, Anne Michelle Long, Olivia Leigh Merington, Sloane Alexandra Paysse, Hailey Reese Sisung, Katherine Kelleher Tober and Giselle Marilyn Wolf. Masters William Harrison Duncan, Richard Ray Martin, Behrens Breuer Richeson and Joseph Charles Romanos were the pages.
Dr. Jerry Joseph St. Pierre was the general chairman with assistance from respective court, reception and floor committee chairmen Messrs. Charles Tusa Walsten, Bret Alden Clesi and Arthur Seldon Mann III.
Her majesty Emily’s gown was likewise designed by Ilaine Hartman and was made of silver embroidered net overlaying silk satin. The flat-fronted skirt gathered to fullness at the sides and pleats into the train. Symbols of monarchy, the crown and scepter, were regal accoutrements, along with the mantle and collar.
Ladies in ball finery included the queen’s mother Abbey Tastet, in a black gown with a beaded jacket; Mary Grace (Mrs. Curtis Perrin Jr.) Rome, in a Hannah Coffin tapestry gown; Mary Callaghan Rome, in an Erin Feterston kelly green strapless mode; Linda Brackett, in an ruched Teri Jon bronze silk design; and Adelayde Rome in a fuchsia gown by Badgley Mischka.
Catching the eye, and all attention as she was presented to the royals, was the returning 50-year queen Charlee Waters Schanzer, whose gown was deep green.
Ladies noted in the queen’s box seats were Mrs. Tastet and Mmes. William Beaty, Charles F. Childress Jr., and Steven Miller, along with Misses Ellen Miller, Elizabeth Miller, Madeline Roohi, Catherine Brierre, Lauren Fierrand and Laura Huber.
Mmes. Curtis Perrin Rome, Patrick J. Callahan, Kenneth Steele, J. Paul Stouse, C. Stuart Rome, Peter Laborde, Merritt Lane, Wayne Zeringue, Alan G. Brackett, George E. White Jr., Edward P. Seybold Jr., Samuel M. Rosamond Jr., Mont Sandels Echols III, Rene S. Paysse Jr., Theodore Davis Ruddock III and John B. Dunlap III were invited to sit in prominent seats (and wore the gold krewe favor by India Stewart), as were Elizabeth Rome, Donna Baus, Savannah Martin, Claudia Carrere, Carolyn Axelrod, Elizabeth McFarland and Tricia Arslaner.
In addition to Ms. Schanzer, there were a dozen former Caliphs queens including Miss Dunlap of 2014.
Flanking festivity of the ball was the earlier reception at the Orleans Club, where the queen and her court were hosted by her mother, and the post-ball Queen’s Breakfast in the country club with “jewels,” candles and floral arrangements in Carnival colors, and the musical chromatics of the Jimmy Maxwell Orchestra. Dancing delights ensued as did a slew of compliments to the beaming queen Emily, her king and her court.