A big step for a petite Seychellois: Stephanie Duval heads to 2016 Universal Petite Pageant
Seychelles' petite model will join 19 other contestants of the 2016 Universal Petite Pageant as they embark on their cruise adventure on Monday. (Stephanie Duval)
Duval's entry marks Seychelles’ debut in the pageant.
“I want to return to Seychelles with a sense of fulfilment and achievement following this unique experience,” Duval said to SNA ahead of leaving on Saturday for Tampa Bay on Florida’s west central coast.
“I’m sure the memories I will be making once there will be priceless. Broadening my social horizon is also a motivation in itself,” she added.
|Duval, who stands at 152.4cm, says that ladies shorter than 170cm are often at a disadvantage when it comes to conventional pageants. (Stephanie Duval) Photo License: CC-BY|
The Universal Petite Pageant is organised by a US-based production company -- Hazely Corp. The aim is to provide a platform for petite women measuring 167.5cm or less to showcase their beauty and modelling potential.
Duval, who stands at 152.4cm, says that ladies shorter than 170cm are often at a disadvantage when it comes to conventional pageants.
Her interest in trying out the Universal Petite Pageant ignited in 2014 when she was introduced to the term ‘petite modelling.’
After searching online for opportunities abroad and after many failed attempts to enroll in such pageants, her application to take part in the Universal Petite Pageant was accepted in 2016.
As Seychelles, a 115-island archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, does not hold a local petite pageant, Duval had to submit her application as an independent candidate.
“It has not been an easy task as I have to do everything by myself. Other contestants have an edge as they have an organization and their national directors supporting them.”
|Duval is the first Seychellois to take part in the Universal Petite Pageant organised by a US-based production company -- Hazely Corp. (Stephanie Duval) Photo License: CC-BY|
Responding to SNA through their Facebook page, the organisers confirmed that it’s the first time they are welcoming a contestant from Seychelles.
The 20 contestants will be setting sail onboard a cruise ship -- Carnival Paradise Cruise -- on Monday. A series of events awaits them including visits to Cozumel, Mexico and Punta Morena, photo shoots at the Grand Cayman Beach and interviews with the judges. An International Costume Competition will also be held where each participant has to wear something representing their homeland.
The main event –pageant night - will be on Friday July 22 on the cruise at sea.
The pageant also includes an online voting side for the Universal Petite Audience Choice Award. Voting which ends on July 21 comes at a cost of $1.07.
Looking forward to the experience that awaits her, Duval said: “If you are short, your body must be in top condition, you must have flawless hair and makeup, your clothing must be stellar, your modelling must be perfect, and by all means, nail the final question.”
|Duval on her crowning as Miss Regatta in 2007. She also took part in the 2014 Miss Seychelles...Another World contest winning the Miss Personality title. (Stephanie Duval) Photo License: CC-BY|
The 27-year-old resident of Mont Fleuri, a central district of the Seychelles main island, Mahé, is not at all new to pageantry.
Duval won Seychelles’ Miss Regatta 2007 and was voted Miss Personality during the 2014 Miss Seychelles…Another World pageant.
Aside of modelling and her love for sports, she is currently enrolled with the University of London following an online degree course in International Development.