NY-based Pinay is RP's Top Model bet
FUNFARE - Ricky Lo () - February 23, 2010 - 12:00am

Breaking News: Walang Hanggang Paalam, directed by Paolo Villaluna and Ellen Ramos, and starring Lovi Poe, Joem Bascon and Jacky Woo, won Best Picture in the just-concluded Soho International Film Festival in New York.

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Even before she could compete in the forthcoming Mutya ng Pilipinas contest as the US East Coast delegate, New York-based Christi Lynn “Ashley” Landrito McGarry was tapped by Roberto de Venecia, Mutya ng Pilipinas Inc. president, to represent the Philippines in the 17th Top Model of the World Search held in the State of North Rhine Westphalia, Dortmund, Germany last Sunday, Feb. 21.

“I helped train Ashley,” said Felix Manuel, member of Funfare’s “beauty experts,” who is working in New York. “She will be formally crowned as Mutya ng Pilipinas-US East Coast next month.”

According to Felix, the Top Model of the World is an international search for the ultimate model who is independent, talented and fashion conscious. It was first staged in 1993 in Miami by the Globana Group before the venue was moved to Germany. In 2005, it was held for the first time in Asia (China). In 2006, our very own Michelle de Leon placed second and later assumed the title after the winner resigned.

From Felix, Funfare learned that the 19-year-old 5’11” morena stunner was chosen by De Venecia as RP’s Top Model bet through engineer Danilo Pagsambugan’s Maharlikang Pilipino-USA Pageant based in the East Coast. Ashley is the daughter of Victoria Alba Landrito from Bicol and former PBA Magnolia player and model Christopher McGarry.

Added Felix, “She was valedictorian in her grammar school, Our Lady of Victories in New Jersey, where she was the president of the student body and captain of the girls’ basketball team. Ashley attended the Dr. Ronald E. McNair Academic High School, the academically-ranked No. 1 high school in the state of New Jersey and the 27th in the nation. She was a four-year varsity starter and MVP for her high school girl’s volleyball and basketball teams. Aside from excelling in sports, she was an active member of the Philosophy Club and president of the Varsity Club. Her passion for art and writing won numerous awards and contests in poetry, essay writing, prose, and illustration or painting, and attended a prestigious visual and performing arts program at New Jersey City University.”

A model, Ashley has a string of beauty titles: 2004 Miss Teen Philippines-USA, a search sponsored by Nena Kaufman’s Philippine Hearts and Hopes Society; in 2006 as US ambassadress who helped needy children in Bohol; first runner-up at the Miss Teen New Jersey-USA with over 120 contestants; and one of the USA’s Five Prettiest Filipina-Americans for 2007-2008.

Ashley had to sacrifice a full scholarship at PACE University in Manhattan (major in Marketing and Accounting) for a crack at both the Top Model and Mutya searches.

Ang mga ‘walang kupas’

I’m sure that like me, you, too, miss the Walang Kupas Awards which recognized the durable stars of Philippine Movies.

Here’s good news: A similar awards, called Gawad Parangal sa Mga Ginintuang Bituin ng Pelikulang Pilipino, will be held on March 5 at the La Consolacion College Manila, starting at 3 p.m.

Among the awardees to be honored for their contribution to the “enrichment of Philippine Cinema through dedication, discipline, excellence and professional integrity” are: Mila del Sol, Anita Linda, Lilia Dizon, Virginia Montes, Fely Vallejo, Delia Razon, Rosa Rosal, Norma Vales, Linda Estrella, Tessie Agana, Lolita Rodriguez, Gloria Romero, Sylvia La Torre, Rosita Noble, Marlene Dauden, Perla Bautista, Gloria Sevilla, Letty Alonzo, Emma Alegre, Caridad Sanchez, Bella Flores and Rebecca del Rio.

The La Consolacion College Manila, headed by its president Sister Imelda Mora, O.S.A., and the Family Council of LCCM with its president, lawyer Lynn Moreno, and in cooperation with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, are presenting the awards in connection with the International Women’s Day Celebration.

The LCCM’s Masscom department and the Centre for Theatre Education and Training, headed by its executive director Arsenio “Nick” Lizaso, is undertaking the special awards presentations.

National Artist director Eddie Romero is the keynote speaker and Marichu “Manay Ichu” Maceda (as representative of film producers of the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s, considered as the Golden Years of Filipino cinema).

La Consolacion College is the current host of the Asia-Pacific Bureau of the UNESCO ITT Chair for Theater-for-All based in the Philippines led by NCCA Director Cecile Guidote Alvarez as Philippine ITT president.

(E-mail reactions at rickylo@philstar.net.ph or at entphilstar@yahoo.com)

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