Mount Lavinia Hotel took on the glam of good old 50’s and 60’s this last Saturday, 14th as Lite Fm crowned the new Miss Universe Sri Lanka for this year. Amanda Ratnayake walked away with the coveted title at the grand finale of what was a course that had, as always, triggered much anticipation, prediction and speculation.
The event was organized embracing a theme inspired by the 2013 movie ‘The Great Gatsby.’ Simerene was first runner up, with Kristina coming in as second runner up. Denushka won our very own Life Online Miss Popularity Award.
More details on the respective mini-pageant winners to follow. The event was presented by Essential Entertainment.
The panel of judges for the finals comprised of Ravi Fernando, Ramani Fernando, Ajai Vir Singh, Chandran Rutnam and Rumali Wijewardena.
The finals featured three segments; an introductory session, swimwear, and evening wear segments after which the top five were announced. The girls were posed a question each, leading up to the much awaited final announcement.
Amanda, in response to what is the one thing she’d like to change about the world, said that she would take up the chance to introduce meditation in schools while commenting along the lines of it fostering the possibilities of building a peaceful society.
Amanda was crowned by the standing Miss Universe Sri Lanka Sabrina Herft, who in her speech, said that (paraphrased), her simplest wish was to represent her country, and she will always be proud about it. Family and friends are people who she could have never made it without, and that no matter how far one gets in life, lack of humility will render it all pointless. She noted that on (that) day she embarks on a new journey, and that she will always proudly wear the name Sri Lanka which is written across her heart.
The event was well organized and precisely timed as the proceedings moved at an efficient pace. The fact the organizers chose to fill in the gaps with some amazing young local musicians, including the likes of Voice Print, Melissa Pereira, Julius, Gyles and Nathan was a great idea. On the whole the event proved to be a decided quality entertainer, with a worthy purpose to it.
Lite FM Miss Universe Sri Lanka: At A Glance
First Runner Up: Simerene
Second Runner Up: Kristina
Life Online Miss Popular: Denushka
Miss Personality: Amanda
Ranweli Resort Miss Photogenic: Kristina
Hi-Green Miss Beautiful Figure: Kristina
Glow Miss Glowing Skin: Simerene
Best in Evening Wear: Amanda
Top Five: Yanisha, Simerene, Amanda, Denushka and Kristina
The Ten Finalists:
Ushieja De Zoysa
Amanda Marietta Ratnayake
Comments from Judges
Ramani Fernando – What I was really impressed about was that all of them were very intelligent and most of their personalities came out as really impressive. They were all very confident and it projected really well. All of the judges were taken aback by this. They were also very presentable. Some of them were of course very appealing as well. This time was the first lot that came across being so intelligent. They looked very confident on stage thanks to Lou Ching. Danu was also very impressive as compeer.
Ajai Vir Singh – I found the participants to be very intelligent. Basically what I was looking for was someone who was holistically beautiful from every angle; the best personality from the lot that was there. Well, I would encourage more participation, because I feel that there are more beautiful girls out there with great personalities, and I hope that they will come forward.
Chandran Rutnam – I found all of the ten finalists to be very intelligent people who were good speakers. They are also educated. Of course there are other factors that go in to selection. They were very impressive. It was an intelligent pool of girls we had this time. They were pretty too. At the end of the day, we have to select someone who will have a chance at winning in the competition in Moscow.
Stephanie Siriwardhana – There were a few really good contestants. I’m impressed that all of them were very educated and I hope that the winner will do justice to Sri Lanka.
Kumar De Silva – Level of competition among participants was very high. It was a very tight and keenly contested crown. The girls in the top 5 were dazzling. And my choice was number 2, Denushka. But I feel one has to abide by the judges’ decision! I have never agreed to compere a Miss Universe Sri Lanka in the past, and have never been present atone myself, but I broke my own rule this time and came to support my favourite contestant!
Amanda Ratnayaka – (Winner Miss Universe Sri Lanka 2013, Miss Personality, Best in Evening Wear)
“It was hectic but all so worth it. I just tried to have fun and enjoy the moment, but of course it was very nerve wrecking. When I heard my name being called out I literally screamed backstage and I was so excited at that moment I couldn’t think of what to do. I just went blank and everything felt like it was a blur. The moment when I was being crowned was so surreal and I felt so overwhelmed,” said Amanda summing up the moment every other contestant wanted to experience.
“The next is the Miss Universe Pageant itself, one hurdle down and one to go” Amanda said as she went on to express her confident approach to the obstacles and stepping stones ahead of her.
Simerene Rabot - ( 1st Runner Up, Miss Glowing Skin)
The pageant was well organized and went off smoothly. I’m happy to have won ‘Miss Glowing Skin’ as the past Miss Sri Lankas have won this title too and represented Glow. The whole of it was very exciting and tiring, but in the end we really benefitted from the experience. Now that it’s all over, I’ve got mixed feelings because there was so much excitement and build-up of a lot of emotions. I feel more relaxed now that it’s over but kind of miss the thrill. Although now I will be busy with training and preparing myself for Miss International. I wish Amanda the best of luck.
Kristina Palliyaguru – (2nd Runner Up, Hi-Green Miss Beautiful Figure, Ranweli Resort Miss Photogenic)
“I worked very hard to enhance my knowledge and looks as did all the other girls. It was a pleasure to work with the rest of the girls and it has been an experience of a lifetime although it was very demanding. I’m very happy to have won two mini titles and to have got placed. All the hard work I put in paid off, but unfortunately there can be only one winner.”
The determined and ambitious Christina went on to say that this is far from the end of the road for her, “This is just the beginning for me and I believe I have much more in store for me. I have a target and I’m going to achieve it. I wish Amanda the best of luck to represent the country and will be looking forward to seeing her in future competitions as well.”
Denushka Weeraperuma – Life Online Miss Popularity
For Denushka it was a bag of mixed emotions as she jovially claims how happy she is to leave strict diets behind “I’m relieved it’s over because I can eat proper meals now and all the nerves are gone. Its still a little sad though because we’ve all gotten close in the time we’ve worked on this. It has been a one of a kind experience and we’ve all taken so much out of this
Text By Nivedha Jeyaseelan & Jehan Gunesekera
Pix by Manoj Ratnayake, Samantha Perera