21st October 2018
Domenech Font and Julía Badanes Catalá
have been elected as Queens for the 2019 edition of
the Fogueres de Sant Joan de Xàbia in a long
and emotional ceremony at the Palau d'Esports 'Miguel
Buigues' on Saturday night. The gala effectively kicks
off the preparations for the festivities next summer,
arguably the biggest party of the year in Xàbia
which will be celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2019,
with the main representatives elected by their peers
and read out by the current holders of the respective
positions, although their own responsibilities will
continue until the Proclamation ceremony at the beginning
of next June.
sports centre, normally reserved for basketball, gymnastics,
handball and other sports, was converted into a special
gala venue for this special annual event. Parents, family and friends
claimed every available seat to enjoy the long and emotional
ceremony which would include an introduction to those
who would make up the Junior Commission and Quintà
2019, a fashion show featuring garments available from local shops Insieme and Maribal
Gilabert with hair styled by Cecilia Diéz plus
some wonderful performances from the Club Xàbia
rhythmic gymnastics team as well as Natalia Cholbi,
national rhythmic gymnast.
one corner of the hall, the voting took place for the
positions of Junior Commission and Quintà 2019 presidents,
one boy and one girl each,and the big one: the Regina
Fogueres, the queen. It is always a serious business.
Some don't want the responsibility, content to enjoy
the festivities without ties. Others see it as a valuable
addition to their CV, to be a representative of their
own, to take on the important role of ambassador across
the region. Commission members controlled the voting
as it would be as national or regional elections. Names
were checked before votes were cast. Fingers were crossed
in some corners.
the voting took place, the ceremony began in usual fashion
with the introduction of the candidates for the position
of Regina Infantil de la Foguera · the Junior
Queen · who each placed their names in the special
voting box positioned on the front of the stage. Afterwards
it was the turn of the Junior Commission to be introduced
in pairs, having just voted for their presidents, before
the members of Quintà 2019 took to the stage.
Dressed in their finest, girls balancing on heels with
immaculate make-up, boys picking awkwardly at top buttons
and ties and sporting haircuts shaved to the perfect
millimetre, participation is seen as a major milestone,
a big step in their lives. Nervous parents looked proudly
upon their children as they take the stage, no doubt
wondering where all the year had gone for their babies
are on the cusp of adulthood. Several generations applauded
each pair as they paraded along the walkway. It's
a big thing, what being part of Xàbia is all
the fashion show and gymnastic performances, the tension
listed a notch as the results had been counted and the
holders of the new positions had been chosen. The noise
in the hall rose and the excitement of the young people
was just about kept in check by the commission volunteers.
The 2018 representatives took the stage to generous
applause from everyone for they had served well in the
past year. They shuffled nervously. They wouldn't be
handing over the reins of power just yet; that would
happen next June. But it was still an emotional moment
that would see their time as prime representatives numbered.
of all, the Junior Commission presidents were announced
with Andrea López Lillo and Marc
Gavilà Torres reading
out the names of María Fresneda Buigues and Moisés
Cardona Puig as their replacements for 2019.
And then the tension rose another notch as it was time
to find out who will be the Junior Queen and her ladies-in-waiting
for 2019. With current Second Dama Isabella Lucía
Barnes away in the UK, current Primer Dama Ainara Hope Collinson picked
out two names from box: Arantxa Sart Mata would be
the new Segona Dama and Amaia Fresneda Buigues, Primer Dama.
And then current queen
Gisela Fernández Silva walked slowly to the box
and, after a bit of a theatrical pause, pulled out a
piece of paper, unfolded it and read out the name of
Julía Badenes Catalá as Regina Infantil for
2019, twenty years after her mother Ana represented
Xàbia as Regina Fogueres.
noise rose as it was the term of the Quintà 2019.
Rubén Bisquert Ferrer and Itziar Espasa Lillo announced
Israel Aguilar Parrilla and Marina Mosquera Alberola
as their replacements for 2019. Segona Dama Carmen Cholbi Mulet
read out María Signes Font whilst Primer Dama Laura Ros Berrut announced Marina
Sobrino Buigues as their
replacements. And then the big one - who would be Regina
2019? Marta Arnal Forné took centre stage, slowly opened
the envelope - and announced Inés Domenech Font
as the queen for 2019. The hall rose in standing ovation
as the Fogueres de Xàbia hymn was played whilst
she took to the stage, welcome by mayor José
Chulvi and councillor Antonio Miragall (Fiestas).
evening finished with a party which continued into the