2020 - 2021 Cotillion Updates

Based on the unknowns and the liability of bringing kids close together via dancing and dining, the 2020 - 2021 Cotillion is canceled. However, when it is scheduled for the 2021 - 2022 year, we will open it up to both 6th and 7th graders so that students still have the opportunity to participate.

If you would like to be added to our Cotillion email list to receive updates, please email Rebecca Ihnen at rihnen@operaomaha.org.

The Opera Omaha Guild Cotillion Committee cordially invites all Omaha metropolitan area sixth graders to participate in a class in dining, dancing, and social amenities instruction.

The Opera Omaha Guild sponsors Cotillion. This is a benefit for Opera Omaha and each Cotillion student’s name will appear in an Opera Omaha season program book.

Cotillion – French word for formal ball – combines fundraising for Opera Omaha with lessons in social skills “disguised” as a dance class for sixth graders throughout Omaha. A popular tradition through the 1960’s, Cotillion died out in the 1970’s. The revival of Cotillion began in 1983 and has been popular ever since. This will be the 34th consecutive season for the Opera Omaha Cotillion.

The primary purpose of each Cotillion class is to provide the opportunity for each student to mature socially. Students learn the art of dining in a formal setting, communicating, being a proper guest as well as a host/hostess, and ballroom dancing. The emphasis will be on helping students learn how to meet new people and how to get along with others; the learning of dance steps is incidental.

Who Can Attend

All children in the Omaha area who will be enrolled in the 6th grade for the 2019/2020 school year are invited to participate.

Dance and Dinner Classes

Each student will attend six dance instruction classes and one dinner class as listed below. When enrolling your student, make sure the dinner class time does not conflict with the dance class.

Dance Instruction Class Dates & Times:
4:30 - 5:30 p.m., 5:45 - 6:45 p.m., or 7:00 - 8:00 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019
Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 20, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019

Dinner Class Dates & Times:
4:30 - 5:30 p.m. or 5:45 - 6:45 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 20, 2019
Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019

Classes will be held at the Omaha Marriott, located at 10220 Regency Circle in Omaha, Nebraska.

Cost is $265 per child. This includes the six classes, one dinner class and the child's attendance to the Graduation Dinner Event.


Parents are invited and encouraged to chaperone one class. You will be able to sign up during the first class on Sunday, Sept. 22.

Graduation Dinner Dance

Cotillion Graduation will be held at the Embassy Suites Omaha - La Vista Hotel on Saturday, November 9, 2019. Graduation will begin at 6:00 p.m. with a social hour, followed by dinner at 7:30 p.m.

Parents who plan to attend the Graduation Dinner Event will be required to purchase a $95 ticket per person.

Registration is now closed.


Girls wear school dresses or skirts and dress shoes (no tennis shoes or sandals and no high heels over two inches). Boys wear long sleeved dress shirts, slacks, and socks. Cords are fine. No sweatpants or sweatshirts. No tennis, athletic or sandal type shoes are allowed. Crepe-soled shoes (topsiders) are acceptable. Graduation Dinner Event attire consists of party dresses for the girls, coats, and ties for the boys.

Cotillion Reunion Party

The Cotillion Committee of the Opera Omaha Guild cordially invites the 2019 Cotillion Graduates to attend the Reunion party on Sunday, January 26, 2020 from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. at Happy Hollow Club.

Cost is $40 per child, includes food and drink
This optional Reunion party is for fall 2019 students only (no adults)
Attire is dressy casual
RSVP by Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Register Here

History of Cotillion

In 1985, the first Cotillion classes of dance and etiquette began for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students. As these classes grew, the format was changed to include only 6th graders. In ensuing years this activity has become a prime source of dancing, social graces, and fun for the young people. Throughout the 33 years of Cotillion classes, this program has grown from a beginning number of 120 students to over 300 in 2011. Many recent students are second generation attendees - their parents being some of the earlier graduates. Cotillion Reunion was introduced three years ago as way for former alumnae to re-connect and celebrate with friends.

Cotillion Graduation