TCHS Rampage

Temple City High School


November 7, 2016

Castellanos blossoms into the Rose Queen


In the spotlight on the Pasadena Playhouse stage, Senior Victoria Castellanos and six other girls waited anxiously while linking arms, until a voice called out from the dark, “the 2017 Rose Queen is Victoria Castellanos!”

Among the seven Royal Court princesses, the committee chose Castellanos to be the 99th Rose Queen of the 128th Rose Parade, on the night of Oct. 20. This is the first time in 42 years the Rose Queen is a Temple City student. The previous Temple City Rose Queen was Ms. Robin Carr, who was crowned back in 1975.

“I was a little overwhelmed during the coronation,” Castellanos said. “It was all very exciting and I was very happy, but for a second I just kind of paused and had to think ‘what did I get myself into?’ I never thought I would even make it to the second round of the tryout process, so for me to become the Rose Queen was quite shocking.”

The selection committee looks for women who possess a wide range of qualities, which include poise, personality, speaking skills and overall demeanor. Castellanos believes that her school activities aided her in developing those skills, and have guided her through the tryouts and interview processes.

The Rose Queen and her Court must learn how to speak to audiences multiple times in one day, which can be a challenge to the typical 17-21 year old. However, Castellanos, who has been part of Brighter Side since her sophomore year and has performed in five of the school’s musicals, has learned that each performance or speech must be as special as the next, since each time is a new experience for the different audience.

“Being in Brighter Side really helped me become part of the Court and become Rose Queen,” Castellanos said. “Brighter Side has taught me things that some of the other princesses are just learning now, like to put a constant smile on your face, how your feet should be placed when you’re standing and the fact that you have to give it your best shot no matter how tired or stressed you are.”

Brighter Side director Mr. Matt Byers has had Castellanos as a Brighter Side singer for two years, with this year being her third. He has seen her develop qualities suitable to become the Rose Queen throughout the years.

“Victoria has been in the singing program since fourth grade,” Mr. Byers said. “To be singing and performing for nine years in front of people has allowed her to build self-confidence, which is what I thought allowed her to take the position of Rose Queen, along with her joyful attitude. Her determination and strong preparation played a major role as well.”

Regarding Castellanos’ earlier years in high school, history teacher Mr. Michael Shore had Castellanos as a student during her sophomore year. Although Mr. Shore only had Castellanos for one year, he is extremely excited that Castellanos has been selected.

“She works hard and always does a great job in whatever endeavor she undertakes,” Mr. Shore said. “I feel she is deserving of recognition for her efforts.”

Castellanos and the other Rose princesses have to make around 100 appearances on media and in the public throughout the year until the day of the Rose Parade.

“As a member of the Royal Court, I’m a lot busier now,” Castellanos said. “But thankfully, another thing Brighter Side taught me is how to power through a crazy Christmas season. I have more responsibilities now, but I don’t think it has changed my life much.”

Castellanos and the other princesses will be overseeing the 128th Rose Parade and taking part in the 103rd Rose Bowl, on Monday, Jan. 2.


About the Author

William Lu
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