What is a debut?
According to Wikipedia, “The Debut is a traditional Filipinocoming-of-age celebration which celebrates a young woman’s 18th birthday, the age of maturity in the Philippines.
Although also reaching maturity at 18, a Filipino man may mark his own debut on his 21st birthday, albeit with less formal celebrations or none at all.”
Similar to a sweet 16 or quinceanera, agirl who will turn 18 would throw this big party wherein she may or may not have an entourage of pairs of odd numbers usually 18,9,7 or even 5. There would be traditional practices like the 18s. And a special performance by the debutant.
The most traditional of the 18s are the 18 roses, candles and 18 treasures.
18 roses(18 flowers)- the debutant has 18 significant males who would dance with her, each giving her a rose or special flower. The first is usually the father or father figure followingGother family members, relatives, friend and the 17 or 18th rose is usually forthe debutant’s significant other or closest brother if not closest friend.
18 candles- 18 significant females in the debutante life who serve as her guiding light throughout her life.
“Each delivers a short speech about her relationship with the celebrant, and any special greeting, and lights a candle that is either held or placed on a stand.
Lastly, there are the (optional) 18 white roses. If a debutante is missing a figure in her life such as a father, she chooses her 18 white roses in place of that figure.”
18 treasure(18 tokens)- 18 people of mixed genders would be giving the debutant a special gift and then they would give this speech and tell the significance of their gift to the debutant.
18 Blue Bills/18 k- older members would pin blue bills or thousand peso bills on the debutante gown as the debutant dances with her escort.
18 books- for the bookworm debutant.
18 shoes/any other article of clothing- depending on the theme or of the debutante choosing people gift her clothes or anything else
Throught the years a lot of other 18s emerged. The debutant can make up her own unique 18s to make.her debut that more meaningful.
Originally debuts are formal parties but in this age of time, debuts can be semiformal or casual depending on the different preference of the debutant.
“A typical ceremony begins with a short prayer invoking blessings upon the debutante. She then enters, and performs traditional dances with her court for their guests. The most important one is known as the “GrandCotillion Dance”, usually a waltz.
Music and other performances are usually interspersed between the “18 items” rites, while dinner and sometimes alcohol are served. A birthday cake ceremony often occurs, and a fireworks display may conclude more extravagant parties. The night ends with the debutante’s speech, in which she shares her thoughts on life and extends her gratitude towards her guests.”