2011 – 2017, those are the years that the Philippines has placed successively at Miss World.
The winning streak was started by Gwendolyne Ruais, placing as 1st Princess to winner Ivian Sarcos. Since then the country has made semis at the pageant.
2011 – Gwendoline Ruais, 1st Princess
2012 – Queneerich Rehman, top 15 semifinalist
2013 – Megan Young, Miss World
2014 – Valerie Weigmann, top 25 quarterfinalist
2015 – Hillarie Parungao, top 10 semifinalist
2016 – Catriona Gray, top 5 finalist (said to be announced as 3rd Princess during the coronation ball)
2017 – Laura Lehmann, top 40 octofinalist
The Señorita Colombia 2018 pageant is said to be slated for the last quarter of this year (rumors have it taking place in November). Which brings a conundrum of how the winner could prepare for Miss Universe in such notice. Hence rumors of an appointment for this year abound.
Two of the names that have been circulating online on the possible ladies to be appointed to compete in MU are Vanessa Pulgarin Monsalve (last year’s Virreina) and Anabella Castro Sierra. Coincidentally these two are the ladies that I predicted to win the title back in 2017! The 5’10” Anabella ended up among the top 10 semifinalists in the nationals while Vanessa (who also stands 5’10”) represented Colombia in Miss International last year.
But I would also want to throw in my personal favorite into the mix: Reina Hispanoamericana 2016 and Señorita Colombia 2015 2nd runner up Maria Camila Soleibe (Miss Universe 2nd Runner up Andrea Tovar won over her). This 21 year old actually beat Miss Universe 1st runner up Raquel Pellisier in RH2016. Camila stand 5’9″ with hazel eyes and light brown-blonde hair which she owes to her Lebanese ancestry in her father’s side. I wished that Camila would be given a chance in Miss Universe.
Who do you think should be appointed as Miss Universe Colombia this year? Join the poll below…
During the Miss Universe pageant in Las Vegas last November, a huge amount of the pageant was dedicated to the opening and very little for the actual swimsuit and evening gown competitions. Below is the breakdown of the actual pageant telecast…
act1 – Welcome contestant intro: africa, asia, pacific
act2 – Intro Europe, Year in the life of a Miss Universe video (Iris Mittenaere)
act3 – Intros: Americas
act4 – Judges introduction
act5 – Top 16 selection per group plus wildcards
act9 -Evening Gown Competition
act10 – Top 5 selection
act 11 – Top 5 q&a
act12 – Top 3 & Final word
act13 – Final look, Rachel Platten performs
act14 – Crowning of of the new Miss Universe
Hopefully this year, the contestant introductions in groups are shortened to the traditional self-intros in pairs of 4. They can still keep the continental groupings for the intros but the continental semifinalist selection has to go. Or at least select the top 10 first then add the 2 top performers per continental grouping to shake up the mix.
I’d also want to know more of the semifinalists during the swimsuit and evening gown competitions, hence the longer exposure time. They can do this through voice-overs of what the girls want to achieve, their goals and aspirations, what struggles they have gone through in their own words, so that it becomes more personal and we get to sympathize with them better.
Look who’s coming inside the US Big Brother house!
In a news report by ABS-CBN, Miss Universe 2015 1st runner up Ariadna Gutierrez (who was mistakenly announced as Miss Universe by host Steve Harvey) will be joining several other celebrities that will be going inside the Big Brother house, US edition…
Here are snippets of the report: Ariadna Gutierrez of Colombia, the runner-up of Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach, is entering the US version of the reality show “Big Brother.” The 24-year-old beauty queen was among the 11 celebrity housemates announced Sunday (Monday, Manila time) by US broadcast giant CBS during a live pre-show of the 2018 Grammy Awards. Her housemates in the upcoming “Celebrity” edition include Omarosa Manigault, a former White House director under President Donald Trump; Brandi Glanville of “The Real Housewives” fame; Chuck Liddell, a UFC Hall of Fame inductee; and James Maslow of the boyband Big Time Rush. Also entering the house are Keshia Knight Pulliam, former star of “The Cosby Show”; Marissa Jaret Winokur, Tony winner best known for “Hairspray”; Mark McGrath of the rock band Sugar Ray; Metta World Peace, former LA Lakers star; Ross Matthews, a judge in “RuPaul’s Drag Race”; and Shannon Elizabeth, star of “American Pie” and “Scary Movie”.
Today’s #MANicMondays feature is on Jayarr Tormo Agustin, Mr. Universe Tourism Philippines 2017 & Mr. Universe Tourism 2017 Top 10 finalist. The 5’9″ tall 19 year old Jayarr also bagged the Best in Swimwear in the competition. Do you think he should join another male pageant in the coming years?
One of the girls that has one of the best faces in Binibining Pilipinas this year is Muriel Orais. The Kagandahang Flores beauty is one of the 19 girls that was selected as official candidate from her camp.
PROFILE Name: Muriel Adrienne Isidore Orais Age: 26 years old Height: 5’6″ Hometown/ Province: Cebu City Profession: She is a Registered Nurse, a TV and print ad model, a Philippine Airlines Flight Attendant & is a part of the Presidential Cabin crew Academics/ Educational Achievements:
St. Theresa’s College
Velez College until 3rd year but graduated in National University
An interesting tidbit is that Muriel celebrates her birthday at the Orphanage of Franciscan Sisters of Guadalupe. She also has spent her time volunteering as teacher at the AHA Learning Center. Muriel has been active in her community and leads an active lifestyle as well. Keeping fit isn’t a problem. She has enjoyed a number of outdoor sports and loves Muay Thai. Not to mention her stint as a member of the Presidential Cabin crew. The former Miss Philippines Water would certainly be one of the girls to watch out for this year.
If you think that the 90’s era of Miss Universe has returned, you gotta think twice. It’s not just enough to nail the interviews, future Miss Universe hopeful has to stand for something and has to be able to tell a story of empowerment and triumph.
Of course beauty and presence still count in pageants. Beauty and universality still weights heavily when selecting the winner from the top 3. While it was evident in the past 2 editions of Miss Universe that the interview bears a huge weight, we also have to factor in that community involvement/ social awareness and advocacy also plays a part. Pageant girls have to add a social dimension to their pageant stories and resumes. Because this allows them to have a jump off point for conversations in the closed-door interviews. It also allows the judges and the MUOrg to see that their possible winner is not self-involved but rather one who has something to contribute to her community.
In my humble observation, the people at the MUOrg are looking for someone who is not just a manufactured doll with a pre-packaged backstory. They want someone with an authentic story and authentic advocacy. It is easily recognizable if it is inauthentic and faked just for the pageant. Even if it is said to have been established years ago, the question of consistency and sincerity are just things that couldn’t be faked. There has to be visible proof not just press releases to make it look ‘real’.
Because if it was manufactured, how it is presented would be robotic/ rehearsed… and judges would pick up on that during the interviews. That is because 80% of communication relies on non-verbal cues. Lying would be very obvious during the close door preliminaries. This is perhaps why the interviews contribute to 60% of the preliminary scores in Miss Universe. Candidates are not just judged on confidence and speaking ability but also on sincerity. Of course if one is not sincere, how could that person represent the MU organization?
The Miss Universe is truly trying to reinvent itself to be relevant, hence their way of looking for a winner that speaks of relevant topics and advocacies is the way to go. It enables the potential winner something to talk about during her reign. Because after all the glitz and glamour of the finals night, the work as Miss Universe truly begins.