No pageant is complete without a review of the good points and the areas of improvement. So this review hopefully would be helpful to the organization in terms of improving its future editions.
The competition in Bali & Surabaya earned for itself a new winner and there are high hopes that Aleksa Gavrilovic will be able to keep up or even surpass with the achievements that Christian Daniel Ortiz has set as the first Mister Universal Ambassador.
Having a total of 48 candidates in this year’s competition is a far cry from the 20 candidates who vied for the title last year. It can be said that this is the biggest turnaround in a male pageant this year, beating the 46 candidates of Mister World earlier. I have to say that there are a number of guys who would have been great for the title as the quality of the candidates this year are very high, a number of them could easily take over the title from outgoing winner Christian Daniel Ortiz. Here are a number of the guys that made an impression with me that I thought would have been good to see among the semi-finalists:
Eduardo “Jimi” Marquez, Mexico – I believe he would have made top 15 if he was able to see throughout the competition. He has this boyish charm and a really arresting face that could have shaken the semis.
Cas Winters, Netherlands – one of the tallest in the batch and most forthcoming. I would have wanted to have him in the semis.
Keven Martin, Lebanon – looks much better with a clean shaven face and has very lovely eyes that gets hidden by all of his beard. It is his best asset IMHO aside from being quite charming in person.
Sinan Subara, Bosnia & Herzegovina – he reminds me of a blonde Judah Cohen and he is a favorite among Indonesian fans with his baby-face. He actually is quite sweet in person and it would have been lovely to see him as one of the semi-finalists.
Jose Oswaldo Ramos, Colombia – he was a runner up at the Mister Universe Model search and it was a shock not seeing him penetrate the top 10. I think he should have made it into that list.
Aleksandr Katsitadze, Ukraine – one of the sweetest and amiable guys in the batch, he would help as interpreter to several of the candidates in the competition. I think that this fella is built for better things in life with his personality.
Nursultan Aytaliev, Kyrgyzstan – it was a surprise for pageant fans not to see him make the first cut. His being a teenager worked against him in the competition but this sweet-smiled teen can make girls (and gays) go gaga over him. He seems to be much suited for a career as a commercial model.
The Competition & Finals Night
One of the main areas for improvement is the finals night which needs a little bit more showmanship in terms of the production. It had potential and it could do so much for its finals night. It lacked the energy and excitement that pageant fans are looking for. The choreography for the finals is a bit too simple and it could definitely use some spice. Same could be said for the stage. The utilization of the large LED projection on stage was a great addition but underutilized with the background visuals. Images of Bali and Surabaya can be used to add more local flavor to the competition. There were a bit too much of performers, I believe that the traditional dance and the gamelan drum ensemble was more than enough. Fans wanted to see more of the guys competing rather than the performers.
It would also been great to know more about the candidates thru a video interview on its official website or Facebook page. Having to know more of the candidates would bring them closer to the fans, which can later bring about more supporters. More supporters mean more viewers, more viewers means more clamor and publicity, more publicity means more sponsors and that will help the pageant long term.
Another area for improvement is scheduling and communications. It would be a great improvement for the competition to stick with deadlines and schedules so that there would no time being wasted. Having scheduled the competition in around 10 days means that a schedule has to be met all the times. The shortest Miss Universe schedule was 16-17 days and those are packed with activities. The last 2-3 days of those are usually spend whole day rehearsing despite staring choreography and blocking rehearsals around the 5th or 6th day of the start of the competition.
The great thing about the contest is that it allowed the candidates to go to different parts of Bali and showcased the numerous temples there. They have gone to Pura Uluwatu, Tanah Lot and several others (FYI, pura means temple). These are the best tourist spots in Bali, plus their official residence in Bali is located at Kuta Beach which is the commercial and touristy side of Bali. The candidates also stayed at the Grand Trawas Hotel (prior to the finals in Surabaya) which boasts of a scenic view of Gunung Arjuno. All of which could have been showcase properly at the finals stage’s LED screens.
Part 2 coming soon…