Wed | Dec 12, 2018

We did well - Miss Jamaica World organisers defend pageant's production quality

Published:Thursday | September 28, 2017 | 12:00 AMShereita Grizzle
From one queen to the next, 2016 Miss Jamaica World Ashley White Barrett crowns new queen Solange Sinclair.
Kandi King (left) and Miss Jamaica World 2016, Ashlie Barrett.

Following a five-year hiatus from hosting duties for the Miss Jamaica World pageant, Spartan Health Club was once again spearheading the local beauty pageant for 2017.

The year has not been short of controversy for the organisers, with last month being one of their hardest periods in the local media, especially with the ejection of Shaneke Williams, one of the original finalists in the top 16.

Then the night all had been waiting for rolled around, and the competition was once again at the forefront of heavy criticism, this time as a result of what many viewers expressed was a poorly organised show.

The pageant was broadcast to the general public via live streaming on YouTube last Saturday, and the comments section was overflowing with messages pointing out all that was wrong with the production aspect of the show. Viewers expressed concern with everything from the quality of the ladies in this year's competition to the hosts selected for the final night.

However, in an interview with The Gleaner, Pageant Director of Miss Jamaica World 2017 Kandi King said that it is easy for persons on the outside to criticise a project with no idea of the actual work that goes into getting the project off the ground.

"I have actually received a lot of positive feedback from those who would have been directly involved in it to say that they loved it. A lot of people see it, and because it looks so glamorous on the outside, they don't understand how much work goes on behind the scenes," she said. "The contestant coordination alone, is a lot of work, and then the planning of the actual event is another job in itself. Mr James, who is the franchise holder, had a whole team in itself that did the event, and I know how much work they put in to make it happen. We had script writers and producers. everyone had a job to execute and they did just that."




King pointed out that having taken over the reins of the pageant again after five years, she believes that her team did their best and can only get stronger in the years to come.

"This is the first time in five years that Spartan has been in charge of the production of this show, and the quality has far improved. There were no hiccups, no glitches. Everything ran smoothly," she said. "There was one time I think we had an issue when Yendi announced a video and it never played at that particular time. That was the only issue we had for the entire night. This was the first time we (Spartan) were doing a live stream, and we had a few hiccups as is expected with technology. We started about 15 minutes late, so it wasn't like a big delay or anything."

She also defended the pageant's choice in hosts as she said that the chemistry between former Miss Jamaica World Yendi Phillipps and social media personality Quite Perry was the perfect blend of class and "down-to-earthness" that the pageant needed.

"We were trying to bring some vibrancy and youth to the pageant, and we thought it would have been the perfect balance and believed it worked. Yendi has the poise, the elegance, and the class as a former Miss World, and he had the youth and the vibe and kind of just brought things down to Earth. We liked the combination and we think it worked well on stage."

Spartan Health Club's association with the Miss World Jamaica Contest has been ongoing since 1976. Miss Jamaica World concluded over the weekend with Solange Sinclair, Miss New Heights Construction, walking away with the prestigious title. She will represent Jamaica at the global pageant later this year.