Pageant highlights unity in diversity » Manila Bulletin Entertainment


Pageants have become an inextricable part of Filipino culture. In fact, the country is now considered a powerhouse in the field of pageantry.

Mr. and Ms. Chinatown 2017 contestants (Photo by Jansen Romero/ Manila Bulletin)

The Mr. and Miss Chinatown pageant focuses on Chinese-Filipino culture.

In an interview, Wilson Agbayani, President of Miss Chinatown Foundation, Inc., shared they hope to redefine the image of the Chinoy by highlighting their traditional values while espousing a progressive stance.

“This pageant hopes to open doorways towards a unified community that celebrates the shared values of Filipino-Chinese culture. Ultimately, it is geared towards the fusion of two (nations) in shaping the potential of our future generations,” he said. “Times are changing. We are changing. This generation is evolving.”

Mr. and Miss Chinatown also aims to strengthen the friendship between the Filipinos and the Chinese.

Since its inception in 2013, Mr. and Miss Chinatown has received overwhelming support from pageant enthusiasts, prompting organizers to come up with a bigger and bolder editions each year.

The theme this year is “New Dynasty.” Mr. and Miss Chinatown has widened their reach with candidates from Davao, Cebu, Baguio, and Dagupan.

“We’ve gone nationwide to tap the Chinese community all over the country,” Alvin shared. “With it, we hope to find personalities most fitting to represent the excellence of the Filipino-Chinese youth in terms of leadership, the arts, entrepreneurship, and academics – those who we deem worthy to be called Chinoy cultural ambassadors.”

Meet the candidates

The male candidates are: Philipp Licaros, Jonathan Lim, Justin de Jesus, Clarence Lim, Jacob Muñez, Michael Cocabo, Derrick Pua, Lance Soriano, Allen Wu, Morgan Gan, Andrew Ryder Co, Vic See, Patrick Rogando, Stanly Quisora, and Martin Sy.

For the Miss Chinatown crown: Melany Sy, Kate Au, Jillian Chua, Audrey See, Patricia Clare Balay, Unity Ong Tan Ka, Angela Elpa, Charmaine Hong, Shelby Hernandez, Maryss Ong, Conikka Lagamayo, Kency Ongkeco, Jesslyn Lee, Ivy Shi, and Joy Wu.

Named Darlings of the Press at a recent gathering are Jacob Muñez, a former US Army; and Joy Wu – a Dabawenya who is the tallest among the contenders.

Mr. Chinatown 2016 titleholder Jan Louie Ngo was also at the event.

“Whoever wins this year, I hope they’ll use their voice and represent this ever growing community well,” he said.

He advised the candidates to enjoy the experience.

“Yes, they have to take it seriously but at the same time they have to enjoy and have fun with it as well. The goal for everyone is to become a better version of themselves after the pageant,” he maintained.

“Focus. Mr. and Miss Chinatown is about forming harmonious relationships so whoever wins should learn how to work withone another.”

The Mr. and Miss Chinatown 2017 coronation night is tomorrow at The Theatre at Solaire Resort and Casino. It will air on ABS-CBN Sept. 10.

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