On a warm pleasant night in spring season, a stretch limo pulls up in the parking lot and girls and boys all dressed up in dresses and suits, corsages and hats, step out of the limousine. All senior year students, dressed up to look their glamorous selves walk towards the venue. It’s their prom night!
The tradition of prom night can be dated back to the early 1900’s in the US. As the academic year draws to an end, schools across the country organize a semi-formal dance for their students. The school gym gets transformed into a scene from ‘An Autumn in Paris’ and the seniors dance away their most memorable night with music, and a mesmerizing ambience.
The word prom finds its roots in the word promenade, which refers to a march of guests at the start of a ball. Proms first took their cue from the debutante ball of the high society and changed to accommodate in it, the middle class society. High school proms at their start during the early 1900s were an epitome of simplicity, with students coming in their Sunday outfits and dancing and socializing with each other. From then on, high school proms became a yearly class banquet for the seniors.
As the economy and culture progressed, proms became more and more elaborate and expensive events. From starting as a sort of college gathering, they became high school extravaganzas. While these dances were earlier strictly for the senior class only, now schools play host to junior proms too. These events are now a sort of rite to passage for students, with their entire social life and popularity culminating into this one night. It became important to come with the best-looking date, wearing the most expensive and sexy prom dresses, and to be awarded a title in the prom court. Boys and girls started paying more attention to their attire and spared no expense when it came to the dance. Markets evolved to cater specifically to these needs, with such amazing ranges of colors and designs in prom dresses. Designer accessories and other must have items have left students spoilt for choice. Many designers have started designing plus size prom dresses so that all girls find variety when it comes to finding the perfect prom dress.
The Modern Tales of Prom…
Proms of today are nothing short of huge lavish affairs, organized in hotel ballrooms and featuring live bands. Attendance at the prom has become a social high point in the teenager’s life, with it being the very first formal event of their life. This tradition has also spread across the globe, with schools in Canada, UK, Germany and many other countries also organizing proms for their seniors. Prom has also grown from being a strictly chaperoned event to a no-holds-barred glamorous extravaganza.