The Miss World pageant is the oldest major international beauty pageant established in the United Kingdom by Eric Morley in 1951. Since his death in 2000, Morley’s wife, Julia Morley, has co-chaired the pageant.
In the Philippines, the franchise was awarded by Morley to CQ Global Quest in 2011, separating it from the Binibining Pilipinas. Cory Quirino currently serves as the exclusive licensee and national director of the pageant.
It has also remained the most elusive beauty title for the Philippines.
Quirino says after three years, CQ Global Quest has somehow mastered staging the pageant and looks forward to an even bigger and more extensive search next year.
“What I want to do is make it bigger next year by widening the search and inviting Filipino women from all over the world—from Europe, Australia, the US, to join the competition,” Quirino told The Sunday Times Magazine in an interview.
“But my real dream, the one closest to my heart is to find a ‘dalagang Filipina’—a barrio girl—whom we could train to join and hopefully win the crown.”
This year, Quirino said the pageant became more intense as they patterned all the challenges to the international competition, thereby including the sports challenge, fashion runway and a series of question and answer rounds to prepare whoever would win the title.
“Another aspect that makes MWP different from other pageants is that we encourage our contestants to speak in their native dialect so that they would be able to express their thoughts more and would be less intimidated by English speaking girls. We also handpick our candidates, and we have a lot of new ones who have never joined a pageant before. It is our way of encouraging neophytes, telling them not to be intimidated or hold back because we can train them.”
Quirino says she believes Megan will have a good chance of winning because she is already a polished candidate.
“She became a favorite of the judges not because she was a celebrity but because she was very impressive in her interviews. If she maintains her gracefulness and poise she really has a very strong chance. What makes her stand out is that she can disarm you with her genuineness. She is a real beauty inside and out.”
Would she be open to more actresses/celebrities joining next year? “I don’t mind, because we don’t choose what kind of profession you have because once the pageant starts everyone is equal,” Quirino replied. “I admire Megan for taking the risk and putting her celebrity status on the line.”
Qurino says the competition gets even tougher this year because of the sheer number candidates with more than 100 countries participating.
“We are very proud of the pageant’s holistic approach; its not only about beauty and physical fitness but also about having a heart—I feel it is the superwoman pageant and toughest crown to win.”
True to the mission of MWP, Quirino also revealed that they will be partnering with the Philippine General Hospital for the biggest tie-up of a beauty pageant. “This is our way of making a serious statement that the woman of today uses her beauty to uplift the lives of the people around her.”