Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World

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Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World

Postby xis » Sat Mar 21, 2020 8:49 pm

    

Inside the Groundbreaking Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World
By Kirsten Fleming March 7, 2020 | 3:28pm

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After Miss Jamaica Davina Bennett was named second runner-up at the 2017 Miss Universe pageant, a denizen of that world said something that Cheslie Kryst — the current Miss USA — will never forget.

“[Bennett] is a brown-skinned black woman with natural hair and she wore it in an afro,” Kryst, 28, told The Post. “I remember talking to someone who said, ‘She did really well but I wish she would have done something with her hair.’ This person was a white woman and didn’t realize that was Davina’s [natural] hair. It didn’t need to be fried, dyed and flat-ironed to be beautiful.”

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28-year-old Miss USA, Cheslie Kryst, says an embrace of diversity has helped destroy the idea that only one woman of color can succeed at a time.

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26-year-old Miss Universe, Zozibini Tunzi, said of being the first woman with afro-textured hair to win that contest "It was a historic moment."

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19-year-old Miss Teen USA, Kaliegh Garris, is a student at Southern Connecticut State University. She was also lauded for wearing her hair natural.


The comment was again on Kryst’s mind in December as she stood onstage at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta and watched Zozibini Tunzi — a South African — take the Miss Universe crown. The 26-year-old student was the first woman with afro-textured hair to win.

“It was like, ‘See, you can win with natural hair,’ ” recalled Kryst.

But Tunzi’s chic cropped hairdo wasn’t the only remarkable precedent of the night. With Tunzi joining Kryst and Miss Teen USA Kaliegh Garris, this is the first time all three women in the Miss Universe franchise have been black.

In fact, for a moment last year, all five of the major pageants — including reigning Miss World Toni-Ann Singh and Miss America 2019 Nia Franklin, who has since passed on her title — were black.

“It was a historic moment,” Tunzi told The Post of her crowning. “It was in Atlanta — black Hollywood. It was in Tyler Perry’s studios. You could not not feel something. There was a sense of pride.”

Kryst, an attorney who is also an “Extra” correspondent, said the momentum comes with a widening ­acceptance of different beauty standards and having more women of color in leadership roles.

“Diversity and inclusion is a timely subject,” Kryst said, “and I think it has helped destroy tokenism and this belief that there can only be one woman of color at a time in highly successful positions.”

According to Dr. Hilary Levey Friedman, author of the upcoming book “Here She Is: The Tarnished Reign of the Beauty Pageant in America” (Beacon Books, out Aug. 25), there are more women of color now participating in pageants.

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For a brief time last year, all five major pageant queens were black women, including reigning Miss World Toni-Ann Singh (right) and Miss America 2019 Nia Franklin (left).


“Starting after 2000, both the Miss USA and Miss America organizations have seen increases in the number of women of color who compete,” Levey Friedman, who is the daughter of Miss America 1970 Pamela Eldred, told The Post. “It’s due to increased diversity in the US population and expansion of what is considered beautiful.”

After winning, Tunzi moved to the Big Apple where she now shares a three-bedroom Midtown apartment with Kryst. Garris, 19, is studying communications at Southern Connecticut State University and bunks with the other two queens when she is in the city.

“They are like my older sisters, so I like to bother them. It’s so much fun. Having two role models who I part-time live with is very cool.” said Garris, whose housemates describe her as “quirky.”

The trio share a ­palpable chemistry. When Tunzi moved in, Kryst took her to Black Tap for a shake, and the three are overdue to celebrate Garris making the dean’s list.

They all have dizzying schedules, but when they’re not traveling, the women relax over cupcakes and episodes of “The Bachelor” — a show in which they have a vested interest, as several of the contestants have also been onetime Miss USA contenders.

“Miss Louisiana [Victoria Paul] was my roommate,” said Kryst. “It was pageant-girl central this season, so we all supported it.”

But the trio’s own bona fides run deeper than reality television, as their stories are being taught in schools and the boardroom.

Kryst learned she was part of a Black History Month display at a grade school in her hometown of Fort Mill, SC. Connecticut native Garris heard from a friend that a local high-school student did an English-class presentation about her.

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Tunzi’s pal told her that back in South Africa, a corporate trainer told employees he would like to “see a little more Zozi in them.”

“What makes me laugh is that this is a grown man following my journey,” said Tunzi. “Little things like that are incredible.”

She also found out from her mother, a school principal in South Africa, that she was the answer on a national exam.

When her reign is up, Garris hopes to pursue modeling. Kryst has an open invitation to rejoin her law firm in Charlotte, NC, but said she is enamored with her TV gig interviewing celebrities.

“It feels like the lighthearted version of being an attorney in a deposition,” she said. “You are there to pull facts and information out of people. You use a lot of the same tactics, ­except you smile when you do it.”

Meanwhile, Tunzi, whose global reign requires the most travel, is still taking it all in.

“I am actually comfortable in saying that I am still figuring it out,” she said. “I’m excited for whatever it is.”

But she is certain of one thing: “It’s exciting to know we can all have a seat at the table.”

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Photo: Stephen Yang; Stylist: Emma Pritchard; Hair: Mario Mele/abtp.com; Makeup: Markphong Tram/abtp.com using Pixi Beauty; Location: 33 Charles St. (Halstead for buying information)

Source: https://nypost.com/2020/03/07/inside-th ... ant-world/


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xis
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Re: Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World

Postby SisterStella » Sat Mar 21, 2020 9:32 pm

:zzz :zzz :zzz =;)) =;)) =;)) 8-| 8-| 8-| (:| (:| (:|
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Re: Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World

Postby Elyerno Zabagguri » Sun Mar 22, 2020 1:12 am

I love black beauty. Although I'm not a fan of this years batch especially in Miss World. I miss the real black beauty like Agbani Darego and Leila Lopes.
B*TCHES, I'M BACK!
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Re: Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World

Postby ambasing » Sun Mar 22, 2020 6:08 pm

Only Ms Teen USA is pretty!

the rest are just smart ass!!!
the ugliest among them is Miss World and Ms USA(she could be a wrestler)
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Re: Black Dynasty Shaking Up the Pageant World

Postby jncanphil » Sun Mar 22, 2020 11:02 pm

Current Miss Universe is beautiful depends who sees it.. but Generally No, she's just smart.... 2019 is a bleep on Miss Universe history.
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