Were You Happy with the Q&A Portion at Bb. Pilipinas Gold 2013?

Winning candidate Ariella Arida  with host Martin Nievera in the Q&A portion of Bb. Pilipinas 2013.

Winning candidate Ariella Arida with host Martin Nievera in the Q&A portion of Bb. Pilipinas 2013.

Just some of my thoughts on the Q&A portion…

To be honest, I wasn’t satisfied, in general, with the answers of our Top 15 contestants in Bb. Pilipinas 2013. Many of them had a strong start but then nerves would take over then they’d start rambling or not making sense. However, there were a few girls who did shine bright!

#41 Ariella Arida – the winner of the Universe Philippines title. The question was about what lesson about life can women teach men. Her answer was – sensitivity. She had one of the better answers and deserved to win based on that. But she still needs to train in the interview portion because it still is an important factor in the Miss Universe pageant. Bravo Ariella Arida Arriba!

#45 Imelda Schweighart – Her question was connected to the Beatles song, “All You Need Is Love” – was that a true or false statement? She answered the question in a roundabout way saying that what we need is to do is spread world peace and positive things and then that will spread love to others. One pageant fan told me that he never ever thought anyone in this day and age would use the ‘world peace’ card. But still, for me, Imelda Schwieghart gave one of the better answers!

Mutya Datul and Martin Nievera duing a light moment in the Q&A portion...

Mutya Datul and Martin Nievera duing a light moment in the Q&A portion…

#39 Mutya Datul – She was asked what advocacy would she pursue after her reign. She replied that wanted to extend help to those in need adding that the BPCI charity arm would be her choice. How I wished she answered in Filipino because her content was GOOD but her mastery in English was not the best. Nevertheless, I believe that choosing her for Supranational was EXCELLENT! I believe her beauty will stand out in Belarus (Europe) where the pageant will be held this year. Bravo Mutya!

# 13 Charmaine Elima – one of my favorite girls was asked what should be kept private in light of the digital age. It breaks my heart to say that she didn’t really make much sense. The last thing I remember her saying was – our personal intentions should be made private. With that said, I STILL believe that Charmaine Elima is a very intelligent young woman, she just got rattled. Of course, host Martin Nievera’s snide comment afterwards (I don’t remember exactly what he said but I remember not feeling good about it) was not kind. We need hosts who will help the girls, not act like they are challenged in the brain department, even if they are.

#43 Rhea Nakpil – her question was about what Filipino trait makes us succeed or shine. She began really well by identifying honesty as the root to our success and heroism. But I think she began to ramble at this point. An okay answer but could be better.

#46 Amanda Navsero – poor Amanda got the worst question of the lot. “Do you think you could be a good Catholic if you believe in the RH Bill?” It is so unfair to be the only contestant to get a politically-tinged question that assumes she is Catholic or understands the Catholic mindset. A bad question, truly. IMHO, lets ditch questions involving politics AND religion. Now to make things worse, the bad question got Amanda all nervous and her answer ended weak with this statement – The RH Bill is good, we should know about it.

Grace Apuad's turn to answer...

Grace Apuad’s turn to answer…

#34 Grace Apuad – I think she gave the best answer out of all the contestants. She was asked what her greatest contribution would be to her local community and she said: Inspiration to the youth. Then she told the story of how she independently took care of herself, even without the help of her parents and was able to finish school. Stories are ALWAYS wonderful tools when answering in the Q&A portion. The key is keeping the short and sweet. Which is what Grace did.

#22 Ellore Punzalan – The Bulletin Reader’s choice winner had a strong start but dropped the ball and ended weak. Her question was about what she would tell the new Pope (Francis) if she had the opportunity to meet him. She began by saying she would congratulate him first then ask him to pray for the Filipino people. BRAVO on that start! But then she began to ramble and lose steam. I think sometimes our girls get nervous because of the crown reaction. They get cowed by the sounds they hear coming from the audience.

#20 Bea Santiago – my favorite girl and winner of the International Philippines title. She gave a middling answer, kind of so-so, but I have interviewed this girl and know that she is smart and ma-chika. She was asked to describe the ideal Filipino and she said that the ideal Filipino is both proud and happy and that they love the Philippines so much and come back all the time because Filipinos always feel at home in the Philippines.

Cindy Miranda... beautiful face, worthy of the Bb. Pilipinas Tourism 2013 title!

Cindy Miranda… beautiful face, worthy of the Bb. Pilipinas Tourism 2013 title!

#16 Cindy Miranda – the winner of the Tourism Philippines title and another favorite of ABQ. Oooh she had a good answer to the question – What is a personal quality that most people remember about you. Cindy said – I’m unstoppable. She added that everything in life she wanted, she did it, even without the permission of parents and friends etc. etc. and this is where her answer began to dwindle. However, she wasn’t lying when she said she was unstoppable because she went on to win one of the 4 crowns.

#12 Camille Nazar – she got the 2nd to the worst question – What country aside from the Philippines fascinates you and why? Ugh. Why would a candidate for a Philippine title talk about another country? Anyway, Camille Nazar spoke in Filipino (I approve) and said that while she doesn’t want to drop the Philippines she chose the US because it is a prosperous nation with a strong President. Funny though because she accidentally referred to Obama as ‘our President’. I’m sure there’s a better way to answer a tough question like this. Any suggestions?

#13 Mariel de Leon – got Boy Abunda as the judge to ask her her question. (How appropriately showbiz, LOL) Question was: Are the best things in life really for free? Mariel enumerated love, family and happiness as things that can’t be bought and that you get them thru respect and love. Speaking of love, I loved her answer and the quality of her voice. Sayang, she did not win a title. But I hope she will get up, dust her knees and move on to a new thing. I’m just wondering… if you were to give her advice on whether to join again or not, what would you say?

#25 Merry Joyce Respicio  – wins the cutest answer award from ABQ! Merry Joyce is an ABQ favorite because of her classic cheekbones and tall frame. Her question: If you were to break one bad habit what would it be? She grinned and said that since she was only 18 years old, she loves eating junk food. It’s one thing she’s like to break because it’s not healthy. Good and simple answer that had the audience chuckling.

Pia Wurtzbach mesmerizes the judges with her piercing eyes and strong answer. She won the Bb. Pilipinas 2013 Runner-up title.

Pia Wurtzbach mesmerizes the judges with her piercing eyes and strong answer. She won the Bb. Pilipinas 2013 Runner-up title.

#15 Pia Wurtzbach – Ah… here is ANOTHER excellent answer. She was asked – What do you think is the greatest achievement of Bb. Pilipinas? Pia replied – the candidates. Not just the winners, she explained, but all of them. She added that their lives change after joining the pageant and then they go on to inspire people. An answer that deserved a crown but winning Runner-up is still an excellent achievement in my book. She now gets top level training and can spend the year considering another shot at a Binibini crown next year.

#33 Parul Shah – my super favorite contestant. She got a question on bullying – What would she tell a child who is being bullied. Parul got off to a good start saying that she would tell the child not to never look down and to respect everyone around you and have humility because this will eradicate the bullies. I think thats how she ended. Another powerful start that ended weak. How I wish she won a crown but the judges have spoken and I abide by that. Now my question regarding Parul is this – is it wise for her to join again?

Well, that wraps up my thoughts on the Q&A. I just wonder if there are ways and techniques of helping our candidates improve in the Q&A area. How do we teach them how to deal with the nervousness and turn it into positive and not negative energy?  I know this is not a nice thing to say, but when I judge at gay beauty pageants, their contestants often do better in the Q&A and are more confident. If the gay beauties can do it well, I so believe the girls can do it well too!

What do you think?

The Top 15 of Bb. Pilipinas Gold 2013

The Top 15 of Bb. Pilipinas Gold 2013