QHS fashion show gives students a chance to shine

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Photo: Claudia Kedney

They learn while they model the latest fashions, all the while raising funds used to benefit their fellow students.

"It's more we're on stage and we're having fun," said Kate Nadeau, a special needs teacher who doubles as the faculty advisor to the Quebec High School students that produce an annual fashion show, held recently at the high school.

This year's show, which drew 250 people, raised about $2,000 through tickets sales to be funneled towards various school activities. The high school has staged the show for about the last 20 years, said Nadeau, who participated while attending QHS.

Secondary Five student Katherine Levesque saw this year's show from two sides, as an organizer and as a model.

"I like modeling and fashion," said Levesque, comparing modeling to "living on stage."

This year's show included 26 models, among them 10 boys.
"I did Boutique Turquoise," said Levesque. "It's the prom walk."

She also modeled shoes, provided by another merchant. Store owners decide most of the time which clothes they will make available for the show.

"Sometimes they give us a choice but it's rare," Levesque said.

"It's been a tradition for a long time," said Nadeau, a former participant in the show as a student. "I was in the fashion show for four years, so I wanted to organize it."

Modeling the latest fashions is only a small part of participating in the annual production, for which about 100 students auditioned.

Students hold periodic meetings throughout the school year to discuss logistics and planning while also holding tryouts.

"They decide on a night when there is no basketball or other activities," Nadeau said.

Teachers are on hand to provide instruction in entrepreneurship. Students must contact the sponsors who provide the outfits, giving them a taste of managing in the business world.

"It gives us confidence in entrepreneurship," said another student who participated. "We call the businesses finding sponsors. It's just a fun thing to do, to be a part of the tradition."

Among the 12 stores who sponsored this year's event were DLS, EXO and West Coast. Seven other local businesses also provided sponsorship. Four stores were repeat sponsors.

According to Levesque, all the hard work is worth it.
"It's more we're on stage and we're having fun," she said.