Young actress Ynna Asistio was very excited to check out the surprise party that her Mommy Nadia Montenegro prepared for her 18th birthday celebration last Friday, September 25 at Tektite auditorium in Ortigas Center, Pasig City.
The young actress, whose birthday actually falls on September 27, said she had no idea about the venue and that all she knew was, it had a Grease theme.
"Hindi pa po niya ako pinapapasok. Wala pa po akong idea kahit ano. Kanina ko pa pinipilit na pumasok para mag-start na rin," Ynna told PEP while she was patiently waiting at the lobby.
The young actress said that she only asked for a small celebration from her parents, but her mother wanted to make her daughter's debut special.
"Pinapili niya [Nadia] kasi ako kung gusto kong mag-party ng malaki or party lang sa house. Sabi ko, magde-debut ako pero hindi malaki pero naging malaki siya," related Ynna, who was initially wearing a Frankie de Leon gown.
Former actress Nadia Montenegro, on the other hand said, she did not mind the hassle of organizing a big party like Ynna's debut as long as it's for her kid's happiness. "At the end of the day, basta masaya ang anak ko, 'yon lang ang importante. Alam naman ng mga anak ko na basta ako, isang tanong lang, kung ano ang gusto nila, gagawan at gagawan ko ng paraan lahat ng makakaya ko."
THE GREASE FEVER. Ynna had an unusual advance 18th birthday celebration last Friday. Her guests were brought back to the '50s when rolled-up T-shirt sleeves, black leather jacket, and poodle skirt and cashmere sweaters were in style. The auditorium was also filled with balloon figures that signified the Grease decade.
While enjoying the buffet dinner, Fish Ahoy, fruit shake, and the famous New York hotdog Sabrett, the guests also got to hear the music of Grease, including then popular hits like "You're the One that I Want," "Greased Lightnin'," and "Summer Nights."
The party was spiced up a bit with special numbers by Ynna's siblings and close friends. First, they danced to the song "We Go Together," which was also a Grease original soundtrack. And then the celebrant's sister Ykka engaged in a hip-hop showdown with the Bad Boy ng Dance Floor Mark Herras.
After that, the audience went screaming and laughing as the group called XY4—composed of sisters Ynna, Ysa, Ykka, Yana, only brother Xander—imitated the Korean Pop group Wonder Girls by dancing to the hit song in the country titled "Nobody."
Ynna also prepared a number to entertain her guests, but unfortunately she was feeling sick that night so she decided to cancel it.
"Naiinis ako kasi dapat kakantahan ko kayo ngayon pero may sakit ako. Nakakainis lang kasi wrong timing siya. Dapat kakantahin ko ang "Hopelessly" kasi nga Grease. So parang nakaka-disappoint, nahihirapan nga po ako," the aspiring singer told PEP.
18 ROSES AND 18 TREASURES. Ynna had her traditional 18 roses and 18 treasures, of course, like in any other debut.
The selected special men who each gave a red rose to Ynna included her father former Caloocan City mayor Macario 'Boy' Asistio, her younger brother Alexander Asistio, Anthony Pla or Tito Hutch, Jose Juan Nicolas Pla, Richard Clement Pla, Gaspar Montenegro, Jojo Manlongat, Rambo Nunez, Kevin Yalong, and Tadashi Hirasawa.
Showbiz personalities also danced with the young lady during the presentation of 18 roses. Among them were Joey Marquez, Jay Aquintana, Ryan Yllana, Bebong Munoz, Paolo Contis, Paolo Paraiso, JC de Vera and, of course, the last dance went to Mark Herras.
Eighteen people who're close to Ynna were also chosen to give the debutante a symbolic treasure for her journey through life. Her grandmother Rosalinda Montenegro gave her multi-colored lipstick; Tita Tanya Montenegro gave her a bracelet; her talent manager Annabelle Rama announced her share for the catering and reminder her, "Huwag ka munang magpapabuntis;" and Ruffa Gutierrez gave a monetary gift because she did not know what Ynna wanted. 'Ito ang bibigay ko, bumili ka ng kahit anong gusto mo. Pero siyempre, mas malaki pa rin ang binigay ni Mommy.
Producer Joey Abacan offered a Holy Bible and Atty. Annette Gozon of GMA Films gave her a watch. Marilen Nunez and Apet Nunez, who are close to Nadia, just gave their gift to Ynna after a short message.
Fellow Kapuso star Yasmien Kurdi offered an alcoholic drink to Ynna, saying, 'Ito, legal ka na;' the controversial Che Tiongson gave her a purse.Ynna's Uncle Sam and Wayne Tullo greeted her a happy birthday with a promise that their gift would just arrive in their home. Budding comedienne Chariz Solomon also gave a message to Ynna while Bubbles Paraiso and Stef Prescot each gave a photo frame containing their memorable moments with the birthday celebrant. Carla Humphries presented pearls to Ynna, and her friend from Centro Escolar Universtiy, Faye More, spoke on behalf of her classmates before she handed their gift to Ynna.
DEBUTANTE'S SURPRISE FOR HER PARENTS. After getting all the surprises from her loved ones, it was Ynna's turn to express gratitude to her parents, especially to her mom who took care of her and her siblings.
In a short audio-visual presentation, Ynna showed the hardships that their mother had to go through to raise them by showing different memorable photographs of Nadia. The former actress was in tears as she watched the video, while her husband Boy Asistio placed a comforting hand on her shoulder. Everyone in the room was moved and emotions heightened when Ynna tearfully thanked her parents and express her love for them. Then she went down to them and gave them a kiss and a big hug.
This scene described exactly what Nadia told PEP in an earlier interview. She stated, "Thank you for giving me a chance to be proud. Thank you for giving me a chance to prove to the world that I am a good person, that I am a good mother. What's all that matters to me now is seeing my kids happy, Boy happy, we're all happy together. Sabi ko nga sa kanila at sa 'yo Ynna, 'Sa abot ng makakaya ko, gagawin ko ang lahat para sa'yo."