Gangtok: Over 80 contestants took part in the auditions for Miss and Mr Teen Sikkim 2019 in the state’s capital Gangtok on Sunday. Positude, the organisers of the pageant, has been organising Miss Sikkim as well for the past four years. With the teen pageant, they are trying to open the doors for younger talents to be a part of platform in the state as well as the country.
The pageant has so far held auditions in Mangan, North Sikkim and Singtam in East Sikkim with the latter being on Saturday witnessing 25 enthusiastic teenagers coming to try to their luck. The jury for the Gangtok audition was led by Miss Sikkim 2018 Rajeswari Chakraborty, first runner-up Radha Khatri and second runner-up Bharati Sharma along with Miss Sikkim finalists Khusboo Tamang and Sarita Biswakarma.
Praising the confidence showcased by the contestants, Biswakarma said, “I wasn’t this confident when I was in my teens. It feels good to see them doing so well and interested in being part of beauty pageant.” Chakraborty added, “Auditioning is a lot easier than being on the other end as a judge. It is tough to select a few from among so many contestants. You get to see how the marks are given or distributed as per the contestant’s talent, importantly on what basis they should be judged. It is a difficult task.”
“The pageant is about personality and attitude, not just about good looks or the walks, but overall personality, towards life and situations. We see positivity in the contestants, because we want them to be up to the mark as they would be representing the state and maybe even the country,” said Radha Khatri.
On judging men for the competition, Khusboo Tamang stated, “The male contestants have done a lot of homework, they know how to walk and talk, they know everything they are supposed to do in a pageant. It’s different because it tends to be easier to know what a woman must do in a pageant, but it’s a whole new experience.”
On handling a huge number of contestants as they open up the platform, Bharati Sharma said, “There have been kids who have been really emotional, some even cried. They are opening up to us, because with the pageant they trust us as it is an ideal platform to listen as well. They are just being honest as per their age. I really appreciate it, because not everyone can do that. But we are handling it in a mature manner, in a positive way. Not being strict or make them feel constrained.”
On the idea for Miss and Mr Teen Sikkim beauty pageant, Positude CEO Gyurmila Bhutia said, “We have been grooming girls above age 17 years, we have seen the changes in them over the course of those 15 days; developing confidence and doing great things by representing the state. So why not groom them from a younger age, so that they can go beyond national and international pageants.”
Interest is taken as the biggest criteria in terms of judgement, Positude managing director Bijay Subba said. “We have [been] thinking of taking 15 boys and 15 girls. If there are more who are capable, we will be taking more as well. There is not much criteria needed, we see their capability in going ahead from this pageant to other bigger pageants. Accordingly, we will be grooming them. We see they have a lot of talent but they are devoid of platform, so it’s just creating a platform or training them to keep them engaged in activities and social interactions which will follow as the pageant progresses.”
The winners of Miss and Mr Teen Sikkim will get a direct entry to the Miss Sikkim and Mr Sikkim auditions. Further, the organisers informed that two more auditions are set to take place — in Namchi on April 19 and in Jorethang on April 20.