Juliet Elizabeth Indergard

By Gretchen Eichenberg

Festival on the Brazos Queen 2024

Juliet Elizabeth Indergard will be crowned queen at the 54th annual Festival on the Brazos Friday, April 26, 2024, at University High School’s Performing Arts Center. Juliet is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Theodore Indergard. She is the granddaughter of Mr. and Mrs. Timothy Piers Litton Bateman of Waco, the late Mr. and Mrs. Richard Ronald Indergard, Jr. and Mrs. Sandra Ciccarelli Indergard of Pasadena, Calif.

As Queen, Juliet hopes “to do my best to represent the mission of Festival on the Brazos, which is to promote Waco tourism and economic growth by sharing Waco’s history, honoring outstanding youth and creating community-minded connections.”

Juliet hails from a long line of Wacoans and local festival royalty. Her mother, Laura Bateman Indergard, was Queen in 1989, and has since served the festival in many capacities, including as General Chairman, Festival Corporate Board Member and as chairman of various committees. Juliet’s brother, Brooks Baker Bateman Indergard, was an escort in 2021 and her uncles, Giles Brooks Litton Bateman and Andrew James Litton Bateman were escorts in 1986 and 1993 respectively. In 1919, Juliet’s great-great-great-grandfather, A.J. Dossett, was crowned king.

Juliet is a senior at Vanguard College Preparatory School where she is on the honor roll, plays in the orchestra, is a business services intern, serves as a TA for anatomy and physiology class, earned the highest average in her multimedia class — and art history is her favorite subject.

“I like learning the meaning, symbolism, technique and artist of the paintings,” Juliet said.

Juliet’s artwork appears regularly in The Vanguard Review, her school’s student news magazine. She named Jen Ferretter, Art History, Sarah Lieber, English and Jacob Lefebvre, Anatomy and Physiology, as three of her favorite teachers.

“They are all very engaging when they teach and make learning the subjects fun,” Juliet said.

This fall, Juliet will attend either Belmont University or SCAD, the Savannah College of Art and Design, where she plans to study musical theatre and minor in art history.

“It’ll be fun to make new friends, explore a new city and see what it’s like to live on my own,” Juliet said.

Juliet started acting at the age of 8 when she portrayed Young Eponine in the Waco Civic Theatre’s production of “Les Misérables.” Since then, she’s been in productions with Waco Christian Youth Theatre, Waco Civic Theatre, McLennan Community College Theatre and Baylor Theatre.

She takes acting classes with Young Actor’s House in McKinney and is represented by Duvall Mac Talent in Dallas. Juliet has taken voice lessons with Dr. David Guess, Lauren Weber, Kari Peden and Kelly MacGregor.

“Some of my favorite roles have been Wednesday in ‘The Addams Family’ at MCC and Laurey Williams in ‘Oklahoma!’ at Waco Civic Theatre,” Juliet said. “I am currently playing Rapunzel in MCC’s production of ‘Into the Woods’.”

Juliet acknowledges that making it in show business can be challenging, but it’s what she loves.

“My parents say to dream big and work hard so I am going for it,” Juliet said. “I plan to study it in college and do any audition that I can and see where it takes me.”

They have every confidence in Juliet.

“Juliet is happy, kind, creative and helpful,” Laura Indergard said. “She is the kind of girl who blooms where she’s planted, always doing her best with whatever life brings her.”

Juliet said she believes it is important to learn the significance of community service early in life.

“Volunteering can help kids open their eyes to the needs of others and to help them understand what people are going through all around them and how they themselves can help,” Juliet said. “Not everyone has the advantages that I have been offered in life, so I feel the need to give back to my community.”

Juliet was a Symphony Belle and a member of National Charity League, but her favorite place to volunteer her time is at the Waco Civic Theatre.

“I have been a part of that community since I was 8 years old and I love to support my fellow actors,” she said.

She encourages teens to discover their own passions and give in ways that are meaningful to them.

“There are so many great nonprofit organizations in our community that fulfill different critical needs, like fighting poverty and food insecurity, providing affordable housing and affordable animal care, protecting families from domestic violence, deepening our community’s connection to the arts and fighting cancer and other diseases,” Juliet said. “I would encourage teens to think about which causes resonate with them and to give their time to these charities. It can really make a difference and volunteering with friends and family is fun.”

Juliet’s family has chosen to honor the Festival on the Brazos Court with donations to the Waco Civic Theatre and the Festival on the Brazos Scholarship Fund.

When she’s not acting and singing, Juliet’s free time is spent reading, drawing, riding her bike, spending time with family and friends and traveling.

“My family loves to take road trips together to the beach, Disney World and to visit other relatives,” Juliet said. “I recently had the amazing opportunity to go to Italy with Vanguard. It was an incredible experience because I was able to see some of the pieces that I had studied in my art history class.”

Family, adventure, faith and friends are things Juliet holds dear. She said she values loyalty, honesty and humor in her friends. And some of her favorite places to hang out are Fabled Bookshop & Cafe, the Waco Downtown Farmers Market and Union Hall.

“Waco has a smaller town feel in a bigger city and there is always some event going on, whether it’s the symphony, the theatre, the zoo, the art center,” Juliet said. “And it’s filled with people who care about their community and are always working to make it a better place.”

As her generation emerges from a challenging time, especially the COVID-19 lockdown, Juliet said she is excited for the future.

“I hope young people make the effort to get back out there, make human connections and explore all Waco has to offer,” she said.

Juliet’s gown is a tribute to her British family heritage and draws inspiration from the regal elegance of the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation gown, according to designer Paula McReynolds. Adorned with rhinestone petals and reminiscent of Norman Hartnell’s stunning creation, the gown combines a timeless silhouette with modern flair, mirroring the seamless blend of heritage and contemporary style.

The silver fabric pays homage to the Festival’s royal color palette, creating a stunning gown for a modern-day queen with a deep connection to the regal traditions of the past, McReynolds said.

“We are so proud that Juliet was asked to represent Waco to our out-of-town guests in the Festival on the Brazos,” Laura Indergard said, “and we know that her friendliness and generosity of spirit will shine through.”

In her sparkling gown and the traditional festival regalia, Juliet said she’s ready for the weekend to begin.

“I hope to make tons of new friends and I hope the Waco court will leave the weekend with a renewed sense of pride in their city,” Juliet said. “I have been given a great opportunity to share the city with people and show what Waco and Festival on the Brazos means to me.”