Yue-Sai Kan poses with LuoZilin (right), Miss UniverseChina of 2011, and TanQiaoyin, regional winner inHainan of Miss UniverseChina 2012. Zhu Ren / forChina Daily
After more than 200 days, more than 20 cities and 5,000applicants, China is about to choose who’s the fairest in theland.
The Miss Universe China 2012 beauty pageant kicked off i nDecember 2011 and is now entering its final stage, as thenational director Yue-Sai Kan presents 22 beauties for the finalon Sept 1, in Shanghai.
With an average height of 1.75 meters and age of 22, thewomen come from diverse backgrounds, including an operasinger, dance teacher and college students.
“The forthcoming month will be critical for what Kan calls the”creme de la creme”, as they undergo a month-long intensivetraining course at the Kerry Hotel in Shanghai Pudong. Kan callsthis a “phoenix-from-the-flames” process”.
They will take a 12-course “Chinese lady” training class thatincludes table manners, English speaking, yoga, and performingarts, under the care of a galaxy of teachers from Japan, Franceand Italy.
Lizzette de Possi, a former model and fashion editor ofmagazines such as Harper’s and Cosmopolitan is one of thecoaches.
“Besides their Asian features, like black hair, these girls are nodifferent from Westerners,” says the Italian.
“Asian beauty has matured and Asian girls are very much indemand these days on the international stage. But the problem is that most of the girls are notprofessional models, and they don’t know the lure of walking, especially when you put them inlong dresses and on high heels,” she says.
The top three winners from Miss Universe China 2011 will also “mentor” and “cheer up” theirsuccessors.
“We will mainly help them relax,” says Li Zihan, runner-up in Miss Universe China 2011, a 21-year-old performing arts major from Shanghai.
“We’ve been through all the pressure and it’s great that now we can pass along knowledge,”says Li, who intends to become a posture teacher after graduation.
“The aim of this competition is not only to change the image of Chinese ladies,” Kan commentson the slogan of the contest, “but also to educate and boost Chinese ladies with confidenceand elegance, as there will be only one Miss China, but the course will be a life-long beneficialexperience. And last but not least, it will benefit charity.”
Miss China will be crowned with a 4 million yuan ($630,000) tiara and compete in the MissUniverse contest in December