The 60th annual Miss Universe Pageant crowned its winner Miss Angola on September 12 in São Paulo, Brazil. Miss Ukraine (Olesia Stefanko) was First Runner Up, followed by Miss Brazil (Priscila Machado), Miss Philippines (Shamcey Supsup) and Miss China (Luo Zilin).
Miss Angola, Leila Luiliana da Costa Viera Lopes, 25, is a business student from Benguela and thinks her smile was her best card since her friends have always told her that she has a smile which can “motivate people” and indeed her appearances on the stage of Credicard Hall theater were very well received by the public.
Ximena Navarrete (Mexico), the last year’s winner, crowned Leila Lopes, the first from Angola who won Miss Universe.
When Lea Salonga, member of Miss Universe jury, asked Miss Angola: “If you could change one of your physical characteristics, which one will it be and why?”, Leila said she was very happy with her look and she would not change a thing.
Leila Lopes said she wished to “become an important businesswoman” in her country and to continue the battle against AIDS and poverty.
With seven titles won in the last ten years, the contestants from Latin America were considered the biggest favorites of Miss Universe 2011.
Vanessa Gonçalves, Miss Venezuela, the biggest favourite, did not enter the Top 10 round.
Shamcey Supsup placed Third Runner-Up after she answered a question asked by Vivica A. Fox. When she was asked if she would marry someone of a different religion, Shamcey, wearing a silver and transluscent white long gown, said she would not marry a man that will ask her to change her religious beliefs. “The first person that I love is God, ” she said. Miss Philippines, 25, is a magna cum laude architecture graduate and she was an early fan favourite, receiving the most of online votes (first ever worldwide fan vote debuted for the 60th annual Miss Universe Pageant) before the Miss Universe telecast from Credicard Hall.
The two-hour Miss Universe 2011 ceremony was watched by over 190 millions people from over 190 countries.
Natalie Morales (NBC) and Andy Cohen ( Bravo) hosted the show that featured live musical performances by Brazilian artists Claudia Leitte and Bebel Gilberto.
Nikolina Loncar (Montenegro) won Miss Congeniality, Ronnia Fornstedt (Sweden) won Miss Photogenic award and Sheldry Saez (Panama) was awarded for Best National Costume.
The competitors from Kosovo, Colombia, Puerto Rico, The Netherlands, USA, and Venezuela entered Top 16 round for the swimsuit competition, while the contestants from Australia, Costa Rica, France, Portugal, and Panama made it to the Top 10 round for the evening gown competition.
The contestants have to be between 18 and 27 years old and unmarried women, who have not been pregnant and have not posed naked.
The jury members were: Lea Salonga (Filipina actress), Vivica A. Fox (American actress and television producer), Isabeli Fontana (Brazilian model), Adrienne Maloof-Nassif (American businesswoman ), Amelia Vega (Miss Universe 2003), Connie Chung (American news anchor), Helio Castroneves (Brazilian auto racing driver).
The Miss Universe Organization, a Donald J. Trump and NBC Universal joint venture, is a global community empowering role models of beauty, health and leadership for young women of today.
Photos from www.missuniverse.com