The Corte of Honor is one of the beautiful Latino traditions of the Quinceañera celebration. The Quinceañera Corte de Honor consists of close members of the girl’s circle who celebrate her as she makes her passage from girlhood to womanhood, supporting her hopes and dreams in her life.
Family members and close friends of the girl’s family members are usually chosen to be in her Corte de Honor. They participate in a special waltz for the Quinceañera. The tradition is for the Corte to consist of fourteen boys and fourteen girls, plus the Quinceañera and her escort. A total of fifteen couples represents a year of the Quinceañera’s life.
In the US, many Latino families prefer to have a half court instead of a full court. This means seven boys and seven girls, making fourteen for each year of the Quinceañera’s life plus herself for the fifteenth year. This reduction of members makes the Corte de Honor easier to work with and maintain throughout the planning of the Quinceañera and the day of. A couple of other major benefits of a smaller Court of Honor are reduced costs, easier to organize dance rehearsals and meetings.
Some hispanic families choose to have an all-boy Corte de Honor. The number of boys in the Corte can range anywhere from four to fourteen. This reasoning behind this idea of the all boy Court of Honor is that it always the Quinceañera to be the only crowned princess and shine bright at her own ball.
On the other hand, some Latino families choose to have a Corte de Honor made up of only girls. Sometimes each girl is escorted by her father. There is an unlimited number of options and variations for the Quinceañera and her familly to choose from.
In another variation, the Quinceañera is escorted in by her Dama de Honor, or flower girl. Her parents can also escort her in, or she may choose to be escorted in by her father only. There is no right or wrong way for the arrangement of the Corte de Honor, so the decision should be made by the Quinceañera and her family according to what works best for their style and budget.
When choosing the members of your Corte de Honor, it is important to make sure that they will commit to the role willingly and happily, because it can be a lot of work and is a major commitment for all involved members. The commitment not only involves time and money, but the members who commit to be in the Corte de Honor must honor and respect the other members by being on time for rehearsals and being on their best behavior at all times.
Before inviting someone to be a member of the Corte de Honor, consider and outline the amount of time and money that would be required for each one to fulfill their individual role in the Corte de Honor. Other issues that should be addressed are the number and location of each of the rehearsals, the length of time of the rehearsals, and the projected costs of dresses, tuxedos, shoes, and accessories.
You may want to consider writing out all of this information and handing out two copies to each member of your Corte, one copy for the participant to keep for themselves and another copy to be returned with the signed approval from the parent, permissing their son or daughter to take part in the Corte de Honor.
Just like every other part of the Quinceañera celebration, the Court of Honor requires planning, time, and commitment for a successful and beautiful outcome. This is why it is important to inform all members what is expected of them so they can assist in turning your dream Quinceañera into a reality.