Sunday, December 18, 2016

Miss International 2016 Kylie Verzosa of the Philippines and her court. 

Newly-crowned Miss International 2016
Kylie Verzosa of the Philippines
The 56th edition of Miss International ended with the crowning of Kylie Verzosa from the Philippines by Edymar Martinez of Venezuela in a gallant pageant ceremony inside the Tokyo Dome City Hall in Tokyo, Japan. Kylie, who is a 24 year-old professional model and a Business Management graduate from the Ateneo de Manila University, edged out 68 other delegates of different nationalities from around the world including her First Runner-Up from the Land Down Under, Alexandra Britton, a 23 year-old Bachelor of Education student at the University of Notre Dame, Sydney, Australia. Second Runner-Up was Felicia Hwang of Indonesia who also won the Best Dresser Award. Third Runner-Up was Nicaragua's Brianny Chamorro and Kaitryana Leinbach of USA was the Fourth Runner-Up.

Kylie Verzosa stood out in the four categories of the pageant: National Costume, Swimwear, Evening Gown and the Speech round where each of the 15 Finalists was given 60 seconds to speak about why they should be crowned Miss International. Verzosa impressed the judges and the audience when she discussed with confidence and conviction about the importance of culture and education to bridge international understanding.

"Three things come to mind when I think of Miss International: culture,
education, and international understanding. These three work together to make the brand of Miss International beauty pageant relevant to the global community and to our time," she said.

"If I become Miss International 2016, I will devote myself to cultural understanding and international understanding because I believe that it is in developing in each of us, sensitivity to other cultures that we expand our horizons, tolerate difference and appreciate diversity. All these enable us to achieve international understanding and I believe I am prepared to take on this responsibility.

The other delegates who comprised the Top 15 finalists were Yoana Don of Argentina, Amber Bernachi of Canada, Cynthia Nunez of the Dominican Republic, Elizabeth Cader of El Salvador, Emilia Seppanen of Finland, Jyunna Yamagata of Japan, Geraldine Ponce of Mexico, Magdalena Bienkowska of Poland, Alisa Manenok of Russia and Pattiya Pongthai of Thailand.

In a separate interview after the coronation, Verzosa said that her victory as the newly-crowned Miss International hasn't sunk in yet. "I still can't believe that I won", she uttered. "I was thinking that Miss Mexico or Miss Poland might won, but the host mentioned Philippines...I am so grateful for the Miss International Organization for this opportunity and I will do my best to do my duty", she added.

Kylie Verzosa is the 6th Filipina who clinched the coveted title and the crown of Miss International. It only took 2 years and 10 months before the Philippines won another Miss International crown after Bea Rose Santiago's victory in 2013. Miss International is one of the acclaimed Big 4 most prestigious international beauty pageants along with Miss Universe, Miss World and Miss Earth.

Kylie Verzosa wowed the judges and the audience with her pasarela skills during the Swimsuit and National Costume competition. Renowed FIlipino designer Francis Libiran designed her costume. 

Gemma Cruz was the first Filipina who bagged the Miss International crown in 1964 followed by the triumph of Aurora Pijuan in 1970 and Melanie Marquez's victory in 1979. It took another two decades before another Filipina took home the tiara in the person of Precious Lara Quigaman in 2005 and Bea Rose Santiago in 2013. 


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