The fifth annual Miss Barbados UK competition is scheduled to take place at The Classic Banqueting Suite on Sunday 5 May. The first event was held in April 2015, but a rebranding exercise in 2018 saw the franchise changed ownership from Cinco Amor to Intimate Kreations.
In a world where body image is looked upon more than ever, Soca News was interested to know if a competition like Miss Barbados UK is still relevant. To gain insight, we spoke to Shakira Hamblin, Managing Director of Intimate Kreations:
What was the incentive to create the Miss Barbados UK competition?
Miss Barbados UK was rebirthed as a university under the Directorship of Telita Alleyne and myself. During our final year in our degree of Production for Live Events and Television, my chosen dissertation topic was ‘The effects media’s influence has on the public’s perception of beauty pageants; a study on how a pageant director can change these perceptions using Miss Humanity International as a case study.’ To expand on this study, we decided to produce Miss Barbados UK with a difference in giving back to the island dearest to our hearts, as we both are of Barbadian heritage from our maternal side.
Do you think beauty competitions are out-dated, and does Miss Barbados UK do more than just crown a queen and title?
Out-dated may not be the correct word to use here, however, there is a very board platform which beauty pageants can make use of. Miss Barbados UK is not your typical ‘Beauty Pageant’. Our delegates go through an intense amount of training inclusive of workshops such as public speaking, etiquette, drama therapy and fitness just to name a few. Last but certainly not least, we have a number of pre-judged segments like our famous Bajan Chef Queen where the delegates cook the national dish of Barbados for a panel of judges, our Heritage Quiz panel debate against the 1st and 2nd generations of Barbados and our philanthropy project, Through Their Eyes – Beauty with a Passion, which doesn’t even scratch the surface of our segments.
Our queen goes on to building the platform of her choice as a brand ambassador for Barbados, taking part in the annual promotional winners trip to the island, sponsored by Barbados Marketing Inc and Intimate Kreations Ltd. You can also visit our website for more details. (www.missbarbadosuk.com)
Do you struggle to get girls to compete or is it reasonably easy?
We always receive a fair number of applications annually and even out of season. However, due to having a tight budget, we aim to have no more than 8 finalists each year.
When the time comes and you decide to stop doing Miss Barbados UK, what would you hope to have achieved?
As challenging as producing a pageant of this magnitude maybe. I definitely wouldn’t be stopping anytime soon. Miss Barbados UK has way more to offer than what we have delivered so far and we aim to keep leaving a positive mark and impact on society on the inner beauty of pageantry. Plus my kids have stated their claim in taking it over when they are grown, as Miss Barbados UK will certainly have a legacy!
I would like to say thanks to Shakira for taking time out to answer our questions and we wish the best of luck to all of the contestants in this year’s competition: Tyra Morgan-Archer, Michelle-May Grazette, Tierney Fauche, Cordelia Harrison & Karyna Greenidge.
For more information on the finals of Miss Barbados UK visit www.missbarbadosuk.com/events.