Janine's costume 'pays tribute to Muslim countrymen'
MANILA, Philippines -- Shamcey Supsup goes back on stage during the Miss Universe National Costume Show in the first episode of the pageant's web coverage.
The Filipina beauty, who finished third runner-up in the 2011 competition, returns this year as the host of the pageant's digital media show dubbed "On the Scene with Shamcey Supsup."
In the first "webisode" released Tuesday morning (Manila time), Supsup chats with some of the 89 Miss Universe hopefuls on the inspiration behind their national costume.
The National Costume show was held last Saturday, local time, at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.
In "On the Scene," New Zealand's Talia Bennett told Supsup her "one-of-a-kind" costume was inspired by the silver fern and fresh spring water identified with her country.
Greeting Miss Philippines Janine Tugonon in Tagalog, Supsup noted that the Bataan beauty's Maranao-inspired costume is a departure from the traditional "Filipiniana" appearances of earlier Pinay contenders in the pageant.
Explaining her costume, Tugonon said, "We want to pay tribute to our Muslim countrymen, Muslim brothers and sisters, kaya ito naman ngayon."
South Africa's Melinda Bam pointed to a similar inspiration for her gold-and-silver costume, saying it is "all-inclusive" of the denominations in her country. Elements incorporated into her outfit were South Africa's coat of arms, its national flower and the precious minerals found there.
Supsup also interviewed other candidates in the first episode of the web series: Monifa Jansen of Curacao, Avionne Mark of Trinidad & Tobago, Kimberly Legett of Malaysia, and Dulcita Lynn Lieggi and Dominican Republic.
Last Friday (Manila time), Tugonon and her fellow candidates paraded in their swimwear and long gown for the preliminary competition.
The results of the preliminary competitions will be announced during the coronation night of the 61st Miss Universe pageant, which will be aired live on ABS-CBN on December 20.
Meanwhile, supporters of the University of Sto. Tomas cum laude can continue voting in the online polls to ensure a spot for Tugonon in the semifinals.
The Philippines is still hoping to produce its third Miss Universe winner after Gloria Diaz in 1969 and Margie Moran in 1973.