Gwendoline Ruais, Miss World 2011 First Runner-Up
Shamcey Supsup, Miss Universe 2011 3rd Runner-Up
Dianne Necio, Miss International 2011 Top 15 Semifinalist and Miss Web Popularity (Photo credit: Bruce Casanova of OPMB Worldwide)
How well will Miss Philippines Earth Athena Mae Imperial deliver in Miss Earth 2011 to add up to the plus points earned by Shamcey, Gwendoline and Dianne?
Without a doubt, 2011 is the best-pageant-performing year of the Philippines since 1973*
. Although we have not yet won a single grand slam pageant title this year, all three Filipina representatives to the Big 3 competitions placed. And considering the evolution of beauty contests into something tougher, extra complex and more rigorous, the performances of Gwendoline Ruais, Shamcey Supsup and Dianne Necio are nothing to be sneered at. In addition, the upcoming Miss Earth 2011 will most likely add some glitter despite the lack of faith in Athena Imperial’s ability to shine. The tilt will be hosted once more by the country so entering the Top 16 is almost always a given.
The question now is…Where does Miss Philippines go from here?
2011 is a tough act (or year, if you will) to follow. Exceeding – let alone duplicating – these feats is close to being an herculean task, but not totally impossible. So what should be done in order to sustain the continuity of stand-out records in the international stage?
My suggestions could be a repeat to the ears of some who have passionately contributed their two cents worth in the past several years. At any rate, I am reiterating the same because we are presently riding the wave of a very encouraging turn of events in the beauty pageant world.
1) This is the right time to encourage the dilly-dallying or hard-to-convince beautiful Filipinas within the last few years to join in next year’s Binibining Pilipinas or Miss World Philippines. Having seen the positive glory brought about by both Shamcey and Gwendoline might just spur them to give joining a try. There is always this inexplicable joy and pride in wearing the Philippine sash and representing the country to the best of one’s abilities and physical attributes. And I’m not even sounding off the female celebrities who are being thought of as beauty queen-worthy. There are hundreds of qualified ladies who can excel in the international level if given the right training, motivation and preparation.
2) Maximize all local resources in grooming our ladies for competition. Top of my head right now is to utilize Filipino designers (both amateurs and professionals) in designing and completing their wardrobe. From the national costume to cocktail dresses to casual wear to evening gowns, we have so many talented and creative minds who are available and more than willing to share their time in insuring that Miss Philippines effortlessly stands out abroad. A circle of fashion designers can be formed to do just this. As the saying goes, “two (or more) heads are better than one.”
3) Prepare them early. Majority of the Latin American countries select their representatives at least eight months or more before their actual fielding in Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss International and Miss Earth. This gives the winners longer periods to get ready, correct their weaknesses (and some ‘imperfections’) with time to spare (or properly heal if you will).
Having said the above, nothing beats enriching the psyche of our winners in bringing on their A-game to the max. Wanting to win the crown and give honor to the country just doesn’t completely cut it anymore. Take for example Shamcey Supsup. The girl did not go to Sao Paulo, Brazil armed with just the external complements to her already beautiful face and figure. Her background in academics helped in instilling top-level discipline and focus. She was not a mere learner, but a truly diligent one at that. She was never contented with going through the motions of mastering the art of pasarela or perfecting the ‘tsunami’ walk or choosing the right dress to wear in what function or activity. She lived, breathed and internalized the role of Miss Philippines-Universe like an award-winning actress who has the cameras following her 24/7. She played the part so well that hours after arriving in the host city, her star started to shine and got even brighter throughout the days and weeks leading to the finals.
And so I state this line again. Quo vadis, Miss Philippines? Hopefully to a path of continuous improvement, consistent performance and concrete discipline in fulfilling the demanding duties and responsibilities of a national beauty queen. 🙂
* – The year 1973 saw the Philippines winning the Miss Universe crown (Margarita Moran), placing 1st Runner-up in Miss World (Evangeline Pascual) and 4th Runner-Up in Miss International (Maria Suarez Ojeda).