Clockwise from top left: Sherrinthe Henrie, Jayme Pinder, Anthonique Bowe, Ann Reckley, Branique Bain, Aaliyah Beneby, Alicia Johnson
By JEFFARAH GIBSON
Tribune Features Reporter
SEVEN teenagers who may have not had the opportunity to showcase their talents otherwise, will do so this Sunday at 6pm at the Rain Forest Theater during the Miss Talented Teen pageant.
The contestants come from all different walks of life and have trained diligently for months to vie for the coveted title. On the stage this Sunday, they will showcase their talents with cultural and liturgical dance performances as well as singing and drama.
This focus of this year’s pageant is R.O.S.E.S. ‘Recognizing Our Sisters, Encouraging their Success.’ Presented by Bahamas Youth Organisation, co-ordinator Sonovia Pierre said this theme demonstrates exactly what the Miss Talented Teen pageant is all about.
She said the contest was more than just a beauty pageant, it was an avenue to build self esteem, proper body image, character and provided a platform for young ladies to show their skills to the public.
“When people hear ‘miss’ they automatically think it is a pageant. We practise pageantry in terms of dress or attire, hair, make up, and etiquette, but our competition is more of a programme that enhances awareness, makes them aware of their body and minds. We want them thinking healthy, eating healthy, taking care of their skin, and education is a top priority.
“The young ladies are taught these things through developmental classes and training which all of the contestants are required to attend. However, the training they are exposed to during the pageant can be beneficial to them after this chapter in their lives comes to a close,” Ms Pierre said.
Though Miss Talented Teen is not new to the Bahamas, Ms Pierre said participation goes up and down every year.
“Hopefully this year’s pageant will capture the attention of many Bahamians and influence more participation from young talented girls who share similar dreams as the contestants,” she said.
“Our platform and mission has to do with education, performing arts, and extending Bahamian culture beyond this little country. The competition is becoming known for being reputable and recognised,” she said.
The programme seeks to promote paediatric oncology.
Every year a girl is ‘adopted’ to the platform, and crowned as princess of the pageant. The family of the child is given a small token as well.
“Rilesa Taylor was the first princess we adopted, she was 14 when we adopted her. She was fighting with cancer for many years and she passed away in February.”
This year the competition will honour the memory of Hal Jackson, father of a Talented Teen, who passed away at the age of 96 in May. The Hal Jackson Talented Teen Scholarship competition started three decades ago.
The winner of the competition will represent the Bahamas in the Miss Caribbean Talented Teen in St Kitts this December. They will also be the recipient of full scholarship to attend Sojourner Douglas College.