Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Korina Gets MAR-ried!

Korina Gets MAR-ried!
The Philippine Star
By: Joanne Rae M. Ramirez
October 27, 2009

All roads lead today to the Sto. Domingo Church in Quezon City, for the much-awaited wedding of Sen. Mar Roxas and Korina Sanchez. Because of who they are, the twists and turns in their romance and in Mar’s political roadmap, the wedding will have far more than its 15 minutes. It will be part history, part tsismis; part telenovela, part prime-time news.

Once, bogged down by wedding preparations and jitters, Korina texted me: “For you it is a story. But to me, it is my wedding.”

She’s probably dreamt of her wedding day since she was old enough to appreciate Cinderella. Now, a successful and independent woman who was prepared to be happy for the rest of her life even without a man (till Mar came into her life and proposed), she is excited and blissfully happy.

She planned her wedding like it were a TV special —seamless and unforgettable. Then Ondoy struck and Korina has had to make adjustments, giving up the reception and some “me” time in order to do relief work in Marikina for flood victims. But after her civic duties — and she is prepared to do more in the future — it was back to make sure the wedding was how she dreamt it to be.

“As you know well, I am, indeed, a hands-on person. I am an executive producer by profession and it is always my job to put things together. I also have a creative side and it is an itch I constantly have to scratch — to create. Mar, from the very beginning, told me that this wedding is my show. The look of the wedding was under my guidance although with the approval and collaboration of Mar’s mom, Tita Judy (because majority of the guests are from their side’s much larger universe) and his cousin Margarita (who is the family chef and florist).

“I wanted an old Filipino look. We chose mostly Filipino flowers — rosals, sampaguitas, camelias. For the tables at the reception (both in Sto. Domingo Church’s courtyard and in the Araneta compound in Cubao), I put together pukpok silver and Venetian mirrors, which Pampanga specializes in making; old wooden candelabras; and my collection of old virinas (gasera lamps). Margarita found these beautiful wood cutout or lace wooden lamps in Bacolod, which we will use for the merienda at the church.

“I was specific about the misalette. Rosanna Fores helped me with designing the ceremony and suggested the readings while Gina Godinez, over wine and cheese, helped us in choosing the music. I love the songs we chose. Of course, I also collaborated with Patrice Diaz on the look of the entourage. I love the stuff she made. I am also very impressed with how Randy Ortiz did the barongs. I was wondering how else to decorate a barong. But, wow, he did it so well. Mar loves his barong from Randy. So, yes, I am a hands-on bride. I guess all brides ought to be.”

But now, as I interview her over the phone as she rests at the Presidential Suite of the Hotel InterContinental, Manila (where she will dress up for the wedding and where Mr. and Mrs. Mar Roxas will spend their first night as man and wife), Korina is relaxed and bubbly. She raves about her wedding cake. “Heny Sison did a great job with the cake. I’ve never seen intricate callado design on a cake! Beautiful.”

The much-photographed Korina chose Robbie Pinera to help her with her makeup, while Robbie’s friend Raymond will do her hair, which will be pulled back and up for the wedding. Edgar Santos, her makeup artist friend from Beverly Hills, is in town and will be with her just to put her lashes on! “O, diba? Spoiled ako sa kaniya!” she gushes.

Korina also handpicked the wedding singers. “The singers I chose for special parts are not superstars but some of the best singers in the industry. They will be singing with the Philippine Madrigal Singers who have been so sweet and thoughtful in our planning process. The Manila Philharmonic Orchestra is donating to us their performance with a 30-man ensemble! They tell me they so believe in Mar so they want to help out. Our celebrity singers are also not charging us. I love them! Mar and I are so grateful and happy.”

Mar and Korina are composing their own wedding vows. Though they are going to be one before God and man, Korina has told Mar that the two of them should not “erode” their core as they blend with each other’s world.

“I’ve always consciously decided I am a journalist and a commentator. So, you see, as I witness what goes on around me it is difficult not to see things for what they really are. It is difficult not to comment, too, torture! But I must learn this, for Mar’s sake. One thing, though, that I have told Mar is that I would never want to compromise who and what I have come to be or have come to believe in so much as to erode my core. I think of myself as a public servant, but never a politician. I’ve requested him to keep me from putting up with some things I cannot take. He has been respectful of this naman.”

They will fly to Japan after the wedding, but it will be a shortened honeymoon because Mar has to fly back to Manila for work. To appease his bride, Mar has promised her a longer honeymoon in December and Korina is as excited for it as a teenaged bride.

Mar told Korina the wedding is her show, but I am giving him the last word in this article. What kind of spouse do you hope and pray to be, I asked Mar.

“Someone Korina will always love and respect and be proud of.”


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