Miss Universe, Miss Earth, Miss World and Miss International… four of the biggest international pageants around, and they are filling up the November calendar. With rumors that Miss Intercontinental is also going to be in the same month and Miss Supranational to start its pre-pageant activities in November, we ask this question: What pageant/s are fans going to focus on?
Miss Earth – November 4th
Miss International – November 14th
Miss World – November 18th
Miss Universe – November 26th (?)
Yes folks! It’s currently circulating over the web that the Miss Universe 2017 edition will be happening on November 26th in Phoenix, Arizona!
According to MV La Nueva Era, the next edition of the pageant will be held in the 5th most populous city in the United States. Additional rumors also has it that the candidates are expected to arrive in Phoenix between the 1st to the 5th of November where they will kick off the pre-activities that will culminate on the Thanksgiving weekend pageant finals. Preliminaries are rumored to be scheduled either on November 21s or on the 22nd.
One of the most heavily criticized national costumes that a Filipina beauty queen wore to a national pageant was the Pineapple Filipiniana costume worn by Carla Gay Balingit (to Miss Universe) and Precious Lara Quigaman (in Miss International). The national costume was a creation by Colombian designer Alfredo Barraza. In retrospect, the costume wasn’t bad as we all thought. It poked a little bit of fun with its literal interpretation of the piña fabric from pineapple fibers that the traditional Filipino costumes are made from. It was festive, it was out of the box and perhaps too ahead of its time. After all it was only in 2015 when we were all surprised by a tuktuk national costume from Thailand.
One of the scenarios I am imagining in Miss Universe this year is having Miss Universe Philippines Rachel Peters and Miss Universe Thailand Maria Lynn Poonlertlarp Ehren as roommmates.
And why not? Both ladies have several things in common. Both are halfies, Rachel being British-Filipina and Maria being Swedish-Thai. Both can speak several languages, English being a common denominator. Both would probably need a king size bed with Rachel being 5’10 and Maria being 5’11”. But most of all, they both have the Thai connection as Rachel also lived in Thailand with her family sometime ago.
I would sense that these commonalities would bond them together and we might see a great friendship blossoming. These two can talk over the blessings and challenges they face being halfies living in Asian countries. But more over, they could debate on who are the more rabid, er rather passionate, pageant fans: Filipinos or Thais… And surely they can share stories of how they are coping with the pressures from their respective pageant fans plus the weight of expectation from their respective countries. Having them as roommates would really be a treat to their fans. And how can one room contain so much beauty?
Are we moving towards a change in the modern day beauty pageants? Are modern day beauty queens more than just surface?
In the efforts to modernize and re-brand modern day beauty pageants, four of the biggest pageants around have updated their pageant to reflect changes in times. All four Alpha pageants have an advocacy to speak of: Miss Earth has the environment and climate change advocacy, Miss International has the Japanese Tourism Board pushing for cultural understanding among nations, Miss World has the Beauty with a Purpose ethos and Miss Universe has HIV-AIDS, Women Empowerment and various other children’s social welfare programs to support.
In order to ride together with the times, each pageant has upgraded how they select their winners. Miss Earth has always had the ground breaking no-make up rounds and close door interviews, and now they have added the public transparency of judging the girls in several areas of the competition. Miss International has adapted the Women’s Forum as a gauge to see how candidates perform in public speaking. Miss World recently has adapted the head to head challenge which is much more likened to a death match between candidates. Then Miss Universe earlier this year emphasized the closed door interviews having the biggest weight to make it to semis. With these changes, we can also see how the winners selected are evolving. The recent winners of Miss USA is proof the change as women with diverse background and meaty resumes are crowned winners: a US Army officer and a Nuclear Scientist. Miss Philippines Earth also is seen with its revolutionary winner, Karen Ibasco, who is a multi-hyphenate winner being a physicist, a medical practitioner, a Latin Honors graduate, a professor and now a beauty queen. She is aiming to succeed reigning Miss Earth Katherine Espin who is a Lawyer by profession. Binibining Pilipinas has crowned a pre-school teacher in the person of Miss International Kylie Verzosa, a strong willed, independent person who happens to also be an events manager in Rachel Peters, an opera singer in Mariel de Leon…and their list goes on. Miss World, whose winners are mostly in their early twenties and yet to achieve much career-wise, have a medical student Rolene Strauss as one of its winners in recent years.
It is not enough to be just beautiful nowadays. Pageant girls who aspire to become full-fledged beauty queens has to have more weight in their resumes and achievements. Substance and surface must go hand-in-hand nowadays, and that is just fitting as pageants have to change with the times. Beauty pageants are still viewed as archaic institutions by majority of the world. But if it is able to redefine itself through its winners to become more relevant, more modern and of more social value, then we can just see a renewed Renaissance for pageantry around the world.
This blogger is on a roll… After predicting the wins of Miss Universe Philippines, Binibining Pilipinas International, Mister Global, Miss Philippines Earth this year, we have predicted Maria Poonlertlarp Ehren as Miss Universe Thailand 2017!
Early on during the screening, I have placed Maria and Fahsai as top contenders for the title. Maria will be competing in November for the Miss Universe pageant which is yet to officially announce its date and venue. While Maria romped away with the title, our secondary pick Fahsai was named 2nd runner up in the pageant. Darkhorse Supaporn Ritthipreuk was named 1st runner up. Supaporn is also Miss Earth Thailand and will be competing in Manila later this year.
The TOP 5 court of winners are as follows:
Miss Universe Thailand 2017- Maria Poonlertlarp Ehren
1st Runner up is 38 – Supaporn Ritthipreuk
2nd runner-up is 03 – Jennifer ‘Fahsai’ Paweensuda Saetan Drouin
3rd runner-up is 21 – Suraprin Artkongharn
4th runner-up is 34 – Ratchanok Naowaset
With Maria as winner, we can surely say that team Southeast Asia is to watch out for in Miss Universe 2017!
It was a hushed rumor among pageant insiders that aside from the Philippines, Japan, Australia and Hawaii is considered to host the Miss Universe pageant. However, hosting in Hawaii wouldn’t push through due to the concerns of the pageant regarding the Neal S. Blaisdell Arena.
“The Department of Enterprise Services was contacted by representatives of the Miss Universe Pageant in May 2017 regarding their interest in holding their next pageant, scheduled for November 2017, in the Neal S. Blaisdell Center arena. For the past two months we have worked closely with the pageant’s local and national representatives to accommodate their needs for the event and the days leading up to the actual show. As a result, we arranged for their use of the arena for two weeks and the concert hall for one week in November. “In recent days, it was determined by the pageant that the arena’s structural capacity for suspending overhead equipment above the stage area was insufficient for the show’s needs and the Department of Enterprise Services was advised the organizers are no longer considering the arena or Honolulu for the site of the November pageant. “However, arena weight capacity has not been a limiting factor for shows staged in that venue over recent years, for example Bruno Mars, WWE, Diana Ross, Janet Jackson, Garth Brooks, Mariah Carey and more.”