32 participants saw themselves transformed in two distinct competitions.
Contributed By Amanda Jayne Lee and Melissa Chen
Two competitions, targeted at increasing its participants’ confidence—The Greatest Loser and Beauty Pageant & Manhunt gave fresh new vision to its contestants as it helped them to create a better self-image for themselves.
More than 70 participants took part in TGL which was sponsored by Body Inc. Set up by celebrity healthcare practitioner, Jacelyn Tay, Body Inc. carries a vision to help individuals achieve the health & beauty they want, through restoring their body’s natural ability to heal itself.
Participants were required to be below the age of 35 with a body mass index of 27.5 and above. They had to go through rounds of interviews and medical check-ups. Upon selection, participants agreed to undergo 12 weeks of healthy lifestyle on a strict diet and physical fitness program to bring about a lasting physical and psychological change.
Out of a total 12 selected participants in the semi-finals, only six made it to the finals, and were eventually judged according to their total weight loss in percentage, total inch loss, overall attitude and determination. During the 20-minute pre-service session on May 29, the finalists stood next to a portrait standee of their pre-competition image as the crowd cheered them on.
Bobby Chaw, Dean of the School of Theology presented S$800 and S$400 worth of Robinsons vouchers to the first and second runners-up, Lyndia Wong and Jason Wong respectively. The grand prize of S$1,200 worth of Robinsons vouchers for “The Greatest Loser” was given to Lau Ber Nard with 26.2 inch loss, 15.8kg and 16.3 percent total weight loss. Ber Nard said, “The greatest thing is the ability to exercise again. I can now climb 110 floors daily and do sit-ups with ease.” Besides giving these participants a new vision of healthy living and eating, the conference also held the Beauty Pageant & Manhunt competition.
A few weeks earlier, on Mother’s Day, the contestants helped out at City Harvest Community Services Association’s Mother’s Day pageant where the AC Beauty Pageant contestants helped give the mothers a makeover. The Manhunt contestants acted as escorts for the mothers.
Said Clara Loh, 20, “Working with the elderly made me realize how contented they are and how a simple gesture can put a smile on their faces.”
“The best part of this competition would be the friends that I’ve made,” shared Nicole de Souza, 19.
Over 100 contestants were finally narrowed down to 20 finalists. The finalists were judged on their overall appearance, eloquence, confidence, charisma and catwalk technique. The finalists strutted with the ease and poise of seasoned professionals for most part and even had their very own fan clubs.
More than a third of the hall was filled with people cheering for their favorite contestant. This year, the boys held most of the audience’s attention with screams and whistles coming from every direction as the Manhunt finalists walked out.
Edward Fan from CHC’s Drama Ministry had his fellow drama team members jumping and screaming for him. Lionel Choong from the Usher Ministry had fans that covered every corner of the hall, who were armed with giant posters showcasing his name and whistles sounding at every mention of his name. It was no wonder he received the most number of online votes, clinching the title of Mr. Popularity, on top of being crowned Mr. Asia Conference 2010.
|CN PHOTO: Jayson Lee and James Lee
It was an unexpected win for Choong, 21, as it was his first time participating in a Manhunt contest. He said, “I really have to thank God, I’m really very surprised at my win.” He attributed his win not just to his family and girlfriend, but to his female counterpart from the beauty pageant, Wong Xing Wuan, as well. “She acted very well with the poses and spins we had to do together.”
With stage experience under his belt, Lionel hopes to go into hosting in the future. Ms. Asia Conference 2010, however, has a very different aspiration—Cecilia Soh wants to be a fashion designer. “If it was a design competition, I would have gone all out,” she said laughingly. “But I wanted to try something different this year, so I finally decided to join after much thought as well as encouragement from my friends.”
The tallest female contestant was shocked yet overjoyed at her win. She said, “I’ve become more self-assured and confident after this competition. I used to look at my pictures and think that I looked awful, but now I don’t need others to tell me that I’m pretty to feel pretty on the inside.”