Monthly Archives: August 2016

GENTLEMEN OF THE PHILIPPINES: A PROMISING NEW BEGINNING (CONCLUSION)

Before I proceed with the winners of this contest, many people would notice that in almost all male pageants, the winners were not given crowns on top of their heads–all winners are simply indicated by grand banners hung over them.  But this pageant decided to crown their titleholders, and they came up with a satisfying concept–crowns in the shape of laurel garlands, just like the ones awarded to victors of the Olympics, for instance.  It worked pretty well, I have to say.

2ND RUNNER-UP:  GENTLEMAN 5 – Rex Peter Calimbayan of Tagbilaran City.  There are people who do dig his chinito features, somewhat akin to ABS-CBN superstar Coco Martin. That would explain how he was able to pass muster in the swimsuit round (a badass tattoo  on his left arm probably also helped).  But it turns out he speaks with a lot of substance as proven in the final round, with a well-composed  speech about his environmental advocacy and his exposition on his hashtag #AsMenFalterBeAGentleman.  He made a convincing point about the role each of us can make to preserve our planet

G05 Tagbilaran

1ST RUNNER-UP:  GENTLEMAN 24 – Miguel Alexis Maliwat of San Fernando, Pampanga.  Here is another one who rose up the ranks from several perceived favorites to nail a runner-up finish.  In his case, he earned it with his his buffed physique, which is more incredible as he relayed in his advocacy speech that he used to be overweight and he wants to use his experience to inspire others to live healthy.  He also gave a solid answer on the hashtag #GentlemenHavePrincples, as he noted that all of us have principles that we live by, and if we remain true to them and use our principles to help others, we will succeed in life.

G24 San Fernando

MISTER TEEN INTERNATIONAL:  GENTLEMAN 11 – Mark Joshua Marquez of North Italy.  It’s interesting to note that despite his obviously Asian featuers, his primary language is Italian.  I also found his features to be relatively ordinary that among the five candidates representing the overseas communities I presumed he was the weakest link and the Johannes Rissler would garner the Teen International title.  But his solid advocacy speech about being a swimmer and promoting sports, plus a solid answer (in Italian) expounding on the hashtag #ForeverGentlemen helped him edge out the heretofore better-regarded Johannes to nail the title in his place.

G11 North Italy

BEST GLOBAL MALE MODEL:  GENTLEMAN 3 – Christian Lumasag of Cebu City.  He was a highly regarded favorite for one of the titles and was on track of getting a “creamier” title before he faltered in his advocacy speech as though loaded with lofty ideas, was disorganized and halting.  He redeemed himself somewhat when he elaborated ont he hashtag #GentlemenNeverRunOutOfStyle, as he emphasizes that it’s not only physical appearance that makes a gentleman but inner qualities like respect and justice.

03 Cebu City

MISTER TOURISM WORLD:  GENTLEMAN 1 – Kian Jabin Sumague of San Pablo City, Laguna.  He  was in a similar boat with Christian Lumasag, a highly favored contender fo rthe title who faltered in the speech round–in his case, he gave a solid advocacy speech, but fell apart expounding on #GentlemanAreTrendsetters.  He had to pause along while before he could express his thoughtsbut perhaps his high scores in other aspects helped him secure a title, albeit a lesser one than most pageant fans and pundits expected.

G01 San Pablo

MISTER WORLDWIDE:  GENTLEMAN 14 – Jason del Juan Martin of Gold Coast, Australia.  He garnered a fast-track slot in the Top 20 as he won the Advocacy Speech fast-track.  Arguably he displayed that very quality onstage in the final, as she delivered the most eloquent advocacy speech and extemporaneous exposition on the hashtag #TheRealEssenceOfAGentleman.  His advocacy speech conveys poetic imagery of smiles and beautiful hearts and how those can serve in making this world a better place.  If we base it on his speeches alone, he would’ve clinched the Universal Ambassador title, but the three guys ahead of him register better in other rounds that he ended up with this title–but it does entail a US trip, so all is good.  Still, I snicker a bit at the title “Mister Worldwide” as I associate that moniker with rapper Pitbull as that is one of his own self-attributed nicknames…

G14 Gold Coast Australia

MISTER TOURISM INTERNATIONAL:  GENTLEMAN 21 – Paul Renzo Velo of London.  Just like Jason Martin of Gold Coast, this overseas contestant representing London UK has a knack for eloquence and gab and delivered it in full-force in the final round, both in advocacy speech and in elaborating on the hashtag #GentlemanEqualsRespect.   His advocacy speech also has a dash of poetry as he exhorts us to use our capabilities and possiblities so we can reverse the issue of climate chate, and he gave a well-composed speech linking respect with compassion.

G21 London

MISTER MODEL INTERNATIONAL:  GENTLEMAN 17 – Job Abogado of Camarines Sur.  I’m very pleased that this native guy turned out to be highly favored in the end, garnering the Style fast-track and ultimately garnering a plum title.  He has these striking native exotic features, a lean-but-beefy-frame, and a funky style that would be desirable in the international modeling circuit.  Though I’m  not crazy about his tuxedo style and thought the Best in Formal Wear award should’ve gone to Johannes Rissler, but well, I guess he is the only one who can pull it of so I don’t object his win here.  But what made him a great winner was how well he delivered in the speech round, speaking in Tagalog sharing his background rising above his poor circumstances on his advocacy speech, and being straightforward as he elaborated on #OnceAGentlemanAlwaysAGentleman.  For the latter he kept it straight to the point speaking about a gentleman having a good heart and standing by his principles and that a true gentleman consistently demonstrates these qualities.

G17 Camarines Sur

MISTER UNIVERSAL AMBASSADOR:  GENTLEMAN 23 – Andrea Biondo of South Italy.  This guy is obviously the favorite from the get-go, with his good looks and his sculpted physique.  I’m glad that he seems to have put in some leg days from the Press Presentation as his legs gained tone and definition during the final, which made him the runaway winner for best in swimwear.  He also nailed the speech rounds, as he proves a strong communicator as he spoke about his advocacy rediscovering his Filipino roots and being direct and straight to the point as he expounds on #Gentleman:AStepAboveTheRest as he relays the qualities of what makes a gentleman stand out, like good heart, good attitude, good manners, and being a good example.  With such a strong overall performance all throughout, it is no surprise he won the prime title.

G23 South Italy

Yes, the inaugural Gentlemen of the Philippines pageant has its imperfections, but that is expected in a fledgling pageant.  Also, the titles at stake may not currently hold the prestige that Mister World, Mister International, the fast-rising Mister Global and the revived Manhunt International may have but many of those new titles do possess the potential to become prestigious down the line.  The winners as chosen were selected fairly and squarely and all in all I’m pleased with the outcome.  Congratulations to all the winners, and best of luck in their endeavors.

JUST ME!

JOSEPH

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All images courtesy of Joy Arguil unless otherwise indicated.

 

 

 

 

 

GENTLEMEN OF THE PHILIPPINES: A PROMISING NEW BEGINNING (PART 2)

In general the Top 20 are an expected lot and 13 of the 15 I highlighted in my Press Presentation article made the final cut, and though I didn’t feature a “bubbling under” list then, those who I didn’t get weren’t that surprising.  Anyway, without further ado, here’s my take on the Top 20.

GENTLEMAN 20 – Dr. Vincent Pua of Quezon City.  I was expecting him to be in contention for one of the titles or perhaps a runner-up position.  But I noticed his physique is not as toned as the other contenders out there, and this could be a reason why he couldn’t advance to the final 15 and have a chance to speak.

G20 Quezon City

GENTLEMAN 2 – Julius Caesar Chio of General Santos City.  I found him a bit raw during the Press Presentation, but there were others who like his boy-next-door cuteness and he seemed to have a well-spring of well-connected internet fans supporting him that he garnered one of the fast-tracks, the Online Voting award.  But still, I can understand why he couldn’t go beyond the Top 20 as his physique is also not that toned.

G02 Gen San

GENTLEMAN 26 – Samuel Joshua Arnonobal of Zamboanga City.  He has a buffed physique, but I think what’s holding him back is that his face is not as appealing as the other contenders out there.

G26 Zamboanga city

GENTLEMAN 15 – Daniel Subagan, Jr. of Ilocandia.  He has a lean physique and attractive-enough features.  But there are more appealing choices out there that is why he missed the cut.  At least he got cited placing 3rd best for the Advocacy Video fast-track.

G15 Ilocandia

GENTLEMAN 6 – Gem Andrei Salvacion of Leyte.  This cutie garnered a special award as Mr. Photogenic and advanced to the Top 20 on the basis of winning the Advocacy Video fast-track.  I think he fell short by only very little as the judges favored several others, which I kinda agree.

G06 Bohol

The Top 15 speech round proved to be an acid test–many favorite contenders fell out of favor when they were hit by a case of nerves that caused them to fall out of favor and miss out of the plum prizes

GENTLEMAN 8 – Muhammad Ali Imran Atendido of Lucena City, Quezon.  Prior to the finals, pageant fans and pundits believe this swarthy hunk has an inside track of garnering one of the titles, and his bronzed complexion complimenting his toned physique along with a distinctive presence in the formal wear round with his criss-cross designed jacket he seemed to be headed for a win.  But then came the speech round, and he was obviously very nervous trying to speak about his advocacy (climate change), ending up sounding disjointed and disorganized expressing simple sentiments about protecting our natural resources and taking care of the environment.  It got worse when he had to expound on the hashtag #SubstanceOfAGentleman, as he could barely think of what to say until repeating the word heart, about having a good heart and strong heart.  He could benefit from a speech workshop as he could’ve shone better if he learned good speaking skills.

G08 Lucena Quezon

GENTLEMAN 30 – Sonu Singh of Nueva Vizcaya.  I have fond memories of Misters 2015 semifinalist Karan Singhdole (who eventually was elevated to Man of the Year titleholder after the “schism”) and this guy seems to be on track of making a similar splash.  Besides his swarthy features and buffed physique, I loved his formal wear look as his black dress shirt evokes a formal Indian outfit (which befits his heritage) and the lacy black overlay of his jacket is a nice, original touch.  But unfortunately, he gave a disastrous disjointed and incoherent advocacy speech.  It’s not enough even if he recovered expounding on the hashtag #GentlemanMoreThanGoodLooks.  He’s reasonable enough citing personality is the key to being a gentleman and shows his love of our country by also speaking in Filipino for part of this section.

G30 Nueva Vizcaya

GENTLEMAN 25 – Ray Ferdinand Chan Garcia of Isabela.  Lookswise, he’s the headscratcher in the Top 15.  I would rather choose the Gentlemen from Bohol or Quezon City in his place.  But he was strong in delivering both his advocacy speech and elaborating on the hashtag #IfLooksCouldKillButGentlemenWill.  For the advocacy speech he emphasized how the youth are the key to a country’s success, and educating them is the best way to unite our nation.  For his hashtag, he spoke in Filipino and emphasized the value of goodwill, respect, and good moral conduct.

G25 Isabela

GENTLEMAN 13 – Roland William de Dios of Cabanatuan City.  I’m glad he made the Top 15 and his enviable physique got noticed.  He also has these native features that I find very appealing.  He actually has something solid to say in his advocacy speech and elaborating on the hashtag #GentlemanInsideAndOut, but his declamatory style is a bit jarring to my ears.  Yes, that style can work in elementary and high school, but in other realms a more natural speaking style is encouraged instead of the stilted, formalized style that made his sentiments less believable than it should’ve been.  For his advocacy, he talked about his advocacy on climate change, especially touching on how it affects families and how we need to be educated on this issue.  For the hashtag speech, he reiterated his advocacy and added in his background as a tricycle driver, and even with his background he practices the values of being a gentleman, as

G13 Cabanatuan City

GENTLEMAN 10 – Carlo Roy Rosalinda of Bohol.  He was Top Three in both the pre- pageant Advocacy Speech (3rd) and Advocacy Video (2nd).  He was solid and appealing in both formal wear and swimwear.  But what made him fall short of finalist honors was his elaboration on the hashtag #GentlemanLiftsTheFaceOfMalePageantry, as he could not elaborate further beyind good attitude and “not just good looks”.

G10 Bohol

GENTLEMAN 16:  Johannes Dula Rissler of Germany.  This strapping 6’2″ 18-year-old seemed to be a cinch to clinch the Mister Teen International title, and I thought he should’ve been the one to win in Best in Formal Wear as I thought he looked impeccable in his white suit.  Though he was solid expressing his advocacy for youth affairs and culture, for the hashtag elaboration #AGentlemanIsNeverAfraidToCry, he didn’t properly connect to the topic, emphasizing a man’s strength and confidence and missed out on perhaps talking about how a gentleman can be free to be sensitive as that hashtag would call for.  That miss may have caused him to miss out of a title and be the biggest upset of the night, as a previously lesser regarded overseas candidate overtook him for the title that seemed to be his.

G16 Germany

COMING UP:  THE ROYAL COURT

 

GENTLEMEN OF THE PHILIPPINES: A PROMISING NEW BEGINNING (PART 1)

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After the opening number

After splintering from PEPPS soon after last year’s Misters pageant (eventually taking all the titleholders from that pageant under their wing), the newly formed Gentleman Charities, Inc. (GCI) led by Preciosa Anna Medina wasted no time securing international male pageant franchises (besides Mr. Model International and Mr. Tourism International which it already held), and scouring the nation (and overseas Filipino communities) for eligible males worthy to be called Gentlemen.  The result of these efforts is the inaugural Gentlemen of the Philippines pageant, which culminated in the final held at the auditorium of Trinity University of Asia in Quezon City at the end of July.

The conduct of the pageant was a lean and straightforward affair.  To the strains of Rico J. Puno’s OPM dance classic “Macho Guapito”, the 30 candidates strutted about in their colorful creative barongs.  It was a step in the right direction to keep the choreography simple with minimal dancing, though I wish whatever moves the candidates made together could be tighter and more synchronized–it’s a bit as if they didn’t have enough rehearsal.  Still, those creative barongs are a dazzling sight that I wish I could see more of that.

The event was hosted by Mister Tourism International 2015 Top Three finalist Judah Jyreh Cohen and Miss Earth 2013 Top Eight finalist Angelee delos Reyes.  They hit a few rough patches in the beginning of the program as they seem to have difficulty reading their scripts (it’s as if the early scripts were either handwritten or printed in small fonts–remember that size 12 fonts or above are typically the best size…) but as the evening wore on they both hit their stride.  They were strong, articulate, and charming hosts.

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Hosts Judah Jyreh Cohen and Angelee de los Reyes (image courtesy of Joy Arguil)

Before I proceed to discuss how the rest of the evening went (pageant structure-wise), I’ll air a couple of constructive notes that I hope would be rectified in future editions of the pageant:

  • The panel of judges are indeed an esteemed and distinguished lot, but I think we don’t need to hear the whole biography of each judge–try condensing their achievements into key highlights that could be mentioned within 10-15 seconds.
  • Many if not all of the panel of judges also served as presenters of special awards onstage–I noticed it’s a bit chaotic for the judges to walk towards the stage as their tables were tight that they were forced to squeeze their way to pass through the other judges as they made their way up.  It’s like being in the middle seat of the middle row of a crowded movie theater and you need to pass through other seated theatregoers if you need to go to the rest room or buy popcorn.  If future editions are to be held in Trinity University again or held in a similar set up like this auditorium, perhaps the producers can try to brainstorm ways to get around this dilemma so the judges would not be inconvenienced.

After the opening number and the introduction of the board of judges, we were treated with the winning talent performance of Gentleman 21, Paul Renzo Velo of London.  His tribal dance presentation was indeed worthy of the win as his movements were tight, ferocious and purposeful.  It’s nice to see overseas representatives making the effort to get in touch with their roots like performing this kind of native dance.

After a chit-chat with a couple of the reigning titleholders, the 30 candidates return onstage to individually parade in formal wear.  For the final night, the theme is white with black accents.  There are a great variety of designs and patterns to behold, and the candidates looked very dapper.

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The 30 candidates in formal wear.

The 20 semifinalists were then announced, starting with the five fast-track champions in Talent, Advocacy Speech, Online Voting, Fashion & Style, and Advocacy Video followed by the other 15.  After another brief interview with the other titleholders, the 20 semifinalists went into action for the swimsuit competition clad in blue Pegarro swimwear.  For many, this is viewed as the highlight of the night.

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The Top 20 in swimsuit.

The Top 20 was then whittled down to the Top 15.  After viewing a video with the candidates presenting their advocacies, the Top 15 were back in their formal wear first making their advocacy speeches, then picked a card from an envelope where they read a hashtag phrase and share their thoughts on them.  I thought the hashtags were simple enough and straightforward so I was shocked how some early favorites then faltered in this round.  It makes me want to suggest that for future candidates in this pageant, we should add a speech workshop (perhaps Norman Tinio can conduct this, though I’m willing to volunteer as consultant/coach) to help boost their confidence before they present themselves to the public.  Then, after the scores are tabulated the seven titleholders and two runners-up were announced.

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Final look at the Top 15 (image courtesy of Joy Arguil)

Before I proceed to discuss the Top 20, let’s discuss a couple of non-finalists one who got citation in placing for Advocacy Speech, namely:

GENTLEMAN 28 – Michael Mendoza of Sarangani.  He placed 2nd in Advocacy Speech.  Perhaps he fell short in looks that was why he fell short of the final cut.

G28 Sarangani

Now, a special note for one guy who garnered a few sponsor’s prizes but one glaring reason caused him to miss the cut:

GENTLEMAN 22 – Paul Benjamin Abal, Jr. of Mandaue City.  He has attractive facial features and he loves to speak up whenever the opportunity calls for it.  He also garnered some sponsor’s prizes that I thought he might pull off a Pia Wurtzbach circa Bb. Pilipinas 2015.  But it’s just too obvious that his dad bod got in the way.  I think with proper diet and exercise, he could become a contender in the future.

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COMING UP: THE TOP 20