Newly crowned Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray won immense applause around the world for her fiery red dress at the pageant, revealed to be inspired by Filipino natural wonder the Mayon Volcano.
The gown’s designer Mak Tumang in a Facebook post revealed that the beloved fiery peak in Bicol known for its conical shape and the folklore surrounding it inspired the gown donned by Gray.
In the post, Tumang likened Gray to Daragang Magayon, a legendary princess heroine at the center of a local legend about the Mayon’s creation.
Magayon, the beautiful daughter of a chieftain figured in a love triangle involving two warriors: Panganoron, whom she fell in love with after a chance encounter, and Pagtuga, a hunter from another tribe.
As some versions of the story go, Pagtuga took Magayon’s father hostage when he found out about the relationship between Magayon and Pagtuga.
Panganoron took his troops to battle Pagtuga’s forces, resulting in a large battle. Pagtuga was killed and defeated, but Panganoron was slain by an arrow just as he and Magayon was celebrating. In grief, the princess stabbed herself to be with her lover.
The Mayon supposedly later sprung from the spot where Magayon was buried. Like the fallen princess, the volcano was an exquisite beauty, leading some to believe that the volcano was Magayon reborn. Some sources add that Panganoron was reincarnated as the clouds surround the volcano’s peak.
“Catriona can be considered as the modern-day Daragang Magayon. She embodies the Filipina’s beauty, intelligence and burning passion,” Tumang wrote in his post.
His opus was met with massive applause from Filipinos.
CATRIONA GRAY IS ON FIRE! SHE’S WEARING A MAYON VOLCANO GOWN! 🙌🏼
— DEWANIE KIM ♥️ (@waniedoo) December 17, 2018
CATRIONA GRAY-"MAYON LAVA" gown
MAK TUMANGGGGG I LOVE YOUUUU pic.twitter.com/PCzgDc2fk5
— 🅰❌✨ (@hi_hello_im_aks) December 17, 2018
Gray through her mother traces her roots to Oas Town in the province of Albay, where the volcano can be found.
Tumang was also the creator of Gray’s Ibong Adarna-inspired dress during the preliminary competition. As with the Mayon gown, the Ibong Adarna dress also channeled the tale which inspired it.
The works of a number of Filipino designers were also used by contestants from other countries at the pageant in Bangkok.