The Legend of a Spanish-Inspired Wedding
Jonathan James Santos and Ma. Cecilia Hernandez
Dec. 3, 2005
St. James Parish - Palms Country Club
as written by Ma. Cecilia Hernandez-Santos
Countless tales have been written and told about planning a once-in-a lifetime event - a wedding. But each wedding carries a unique a story, as unique as the couple themselves. For after all, the wedding is a reflection of the distinct character and personality of the bride and groom.
It will be a year on December 3 when Jonathan and I went on our own unique journey as husband and wife. So last year, how did Jonathan and I come up with the idea of having a Spanish-inspired wedding? Well, it is a pretty simple tale actually.
I had secretly dreamt of a Spanish theme because aside from my fascination with the culture and people, I also wanted to celebrate and bring out part of my family's heritage. To my surprise, when Jonathan and I were talking about themes, Jonathan said that he wanted a Spanish-inspired wedding as well. So, there you go - a Spanish-inspired wedding it would be. Pretty simple, yes?
We had certainly arrived at an agreement quite quickly, but ironically, the process turned out to be very challenging. Countless research was done on the internet; we attended several bridal fairs, went over countless magazines and looked over various suppliers. My mind was like a sponge while Jonathan was sifting all the information to make them manageable and useful. But with the collaboration, enthusiasm and hard work of friends and family, we managed to create the wedding as close as possible to what we had envisioned.
One of the most unique and memorable experiences for me was dancing the flamenco before our guests. What could be more appropriate and fitting for a Spanish-inspired wedding, right?
Jonathan and I had actually been taking flamenco lessons under Tita Cecile de Joya at Centro Flamenco. We had initially planned on doing the festive baile (dance, in Spanish) called "Sevillanas", but as it would turn out, weeks before the wedding, Tita Cecile suggested instead the red fan dance to the music of "Leyenda del Beso" - The Legend of the Kiss. She said it had a certain flair to it and was fitting for the occasion. So it was set - just two weeks before the wedding and just after concluding two major meetings organized at the office, Jonathan and I did a crash course on our baile.
I was unsure whether we could do it. I thought, better to present nothing than make a complete fool of ourselves before our guests. But with the prodding and encouragement of our wedding coordinator, Tita Celia Cunanan, we decided to go ahead.
Well, as it turned out, the flamenco was one of the main highlights and masterpieces of our wedding!
I was impressed with Jonathan for despite his discomfort with the steps and movements, he was smiling the entire time and was actually enjoying himself. And there I was, relying on my body's memory of the movements, going with the highs and lows of the music, the crescendo and diminuendo, displaying and flipping the fan as I was taught by Tita Cecile, turning my wrist while keeping my elbow up, keeping my chin up, stomping as loudly as I could with my plantas and tacon ("ball" and "heel", in Spanish). To our surprise, we not only finished the dance with all the confetti falling from above, we also enjoyed it! And to our amazement, so did our guests!
I can never forget the cheer and applause we received from our guests and our emcee, Dylan Thomas. Roses were being thrown in the air, landing on the dancefloor. I remember we had to bow at least three times until the cheers and applause died down. It was unbelievable! We did not expect that they would react this way.
So now, almost a year has gone by. When Jonathan and I look back on our wedding, we have many stories to tell about how we had managed to pull this off.
Today, our condo in Manila is adorned with "Flamenco II" by Marta Wily that depicts a Spanish lady dancing the flamenco. It reminds us of the story of how we pulled off this feat together.
So that is our legend - the legend of the flamenco, the legend of the red fan dance called "Leyenda del Beso".
What will your wedding story or legend be?
To all the upcoming brides and grooms, enjoy the preparations as much as the wedding day itself. We wish you all the best! God bless you all!
Couturier/Designer - April and Karen Yu
Florist - April and Karen Yu
Photo & Video - John Tronco
Dance Teacher - Ms. Cecile De Joya
Music - Church and ReceptionThe Gift of Kenananiah
Music - Reception: Bernie Pasamba
Bridal Car - Vintage car from Mr. Greg Ching
Emcee - Dylan Thomas
Wedding Coordinators - The Social Connection