Friday, December 05, 2003
"2004 Miss Chinese International Pageant" will be held on 17th January next year in Hong Kong and twenty contestants from all over the world will first be heading out at the beginning of the month to 'The Pearl of the North' Dalian for location filming. The organisers arranged for the pageant deputy co-ordination manager Rosa Chan to take part in a contract signing event with the tourism chief of Dalian and a representative from the advertising sponsors yesterday and Bernice Liu and Shirley Yeung both came along to offer some words of advice to this year's Hong Kong representative Mandy Cho as well as to wish her every success in winning this year's competition.
Preparing hard for the contest at the moment, Mandy is confident in herself: "Yes, I hope that my performance on the day will be better as this is my personal target. I will read up on Chinese history and tell the other contestants all about it." Shirley was rather envious of Mandy being able to go and film in Dalian as she says: "In my year, we went to Panyu and were facing animals all day. The weather was cold and I had to hug a hot water bottle to get to sleep. I know that Dalian will also be very cold, so I will advise her to take some facials with her and because they will be doing a lot of dancing, then massage cream is another must."
As for Bernice, she laughs that Mandy has been working non-stop since winning her pageant and praises her intelligence: "I don't really need to give her any advice!" As for her father receiving her prize from the anniversary on her behalf, he was spotted together with Bernice's mother as they picked her up from the studio. Bernice added: "I am very happy that I can spend Christmas with my mum and dad this year and I have already bought presents for them." However she has not yet thought of what to buy for her boyfriend Hawick Lau as she jokes: "I don't know what he wants, maybe you (the press) can help me ask him."
Bernice Liu, Mandy Cho and Shirley Yeung appeared at a press conference for next year's Miss Chinese International pageant and announced that they will be filming in Dalian this year. Wearing a short skirt, Bernice looked rather stylish and Mandy appeared in a low cut dress that captured the audience's attentions after she removed her coat with much persuasion from the press. She explained: "I was just wanting to blend in with the other girls." Bernice says that she has already bough presents for her parents: "I can't say what, but my mum has come back to Hong Kong and this year we can spend Christmas together. (Have you bought a present for your boyfriend?) Who? (Hawick Lau!) I don't know what to buy him, maybe you can help me find out."
When the tourism chief of Dalian was giving his address in Mandarin, Bernice was listening very intently to him, but later she revealed that she didn't understand a word and had to ask Shirley what he was saying. When asked how she handles stage appearances on the mainland, she laughs: "I don't say anything! I just dance and sing!"
As for entering this year's contest, Mandy is very confident: "I will be swotting up on my Chinese history and culture so that I can explain this to the other contestants and I will be maintaining a healthy body and keeping fit." She was praised by Bernice for being professional and Shirley reminded Mandy to tkae masks, a hot water bottle and massage cream with her. She says: "When I was in the contest, we went to Panyu and it was quite cold. As we were there for nearly a month, I was quite homesick."
The representative from the advertising company responsible for the pageant preparations indicated that the original plans were to have filming in Xian, but after much consideration, they decided to go to Dalian instead. Last year's contest was held in Harbin, where they made quite a spectacular performance that was even copied by the Miss World organisers, so this year they will continue bringing in some new elements.
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