SINGAPORE, 18 OCTOBER 2008 — Few would expect to see a droolworthy display of well-toned bods and gorgeous faces strutting their stuff in a church setting, but City Harvest Church put that traditional mindset to rest once and for all by holding a Manhunt and Beauty Pageant during their Emerge! Conference in 2007. Following the immense success of that event, the search has now begun for the next king and queen of good looks to be crowned at the upcoming Asia Conference 2008 this November.
The preliminaries were held on 2 October at the Research University for Leadership auditorium at The Riverwalk. Due to an overwhelming response, this round took more than four hours to wrap up. Contestants were put through a gruelling series of tests, consisting of a catwalk parade, self introduction and a Q&A session.
One of the judges, Audrey Ng explained that the judging criteria included physique, confidence, eloquence and overall appearance.
Many of the contestants had never walked a catwalk in their lives, much less take part in a pageant. But despite nerves, most maintained their poise throughout the competition. Some were even bold enough to throw in a few slick moves – this was certainly the perfect time to put to good use Pastor Kong Hee’s life motto of “zo lang ai zai” (Hokkien, meaning “be cool”).
When it came to the self introduction and public speaking segment, some of the non-Singaporean contestants faced a language barrier as English was not native to them. However, most came well-prepared and delivered their answers confidently.
|PHOTOS: Daniel Poh
More than just a chance to win the coveted title, this competition is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. “The Manhunt and Beauty Pageant is a platform for our members to display their talents in front of an audience, to step out in faith and do something they may not have dared to do previously,” says Ng. Contestant Desmond Tan echoes his views. “I wanted to invest in the talents God has given to me, to use those talents to glorify God,” he shares.Another contestant, Michele Tan says that win or lose, she is here for the experience. “I just have fun out there,” she says.The finals for the Manhunt and Beauty Pageant will be held during the Asia Conference 2008, which takes place from 19-23 November at Singapore Expo Hall 8.