While it isn’t forbidden, speaking Filipino during the Q and A segment is something pageant fans have frown upon. With our high standards for beauty queens, learning to converse and speak in English has always been a top priority.
However, this somehow changed during the coronation night of Bb. Pilipinas 2022. In just 30 seconds, 1st runner-up Herlene Budol delivered an outstanding answer while speaking our native language. What could have been a risky move turned out to be a wise decision and, in the end, it paid off.
Like Herlene, there have been similar instances throughout the pageant’s history that a candidate opted to speak her mother tongue. All of them ending with favorable results.
Here, we listed 3 Bb. Pilipinas Queens who answered their Q and A in Filipino.
Maria Anthea Robles
During Bb. Pilipinas 1988, Maria Anthea Robles received a question, fitting of her answer.
Q: Supposing that the people you meet abroad could not tell a Filipino apart from other Asians, what would you do to enable them to tell the difference?
In the most natural way possible, she responded with:
Gagawin ko yung kung ano ko. I am a Filipino, papakita ko sa kanila na Filipino ako. Yung kung ano ako ngayon, yun ako.
Anthea would later become Bb. Pilipinas-International 1988. She went to Japan to compete at Miss International 1988.
For her question, Bb. Pilipinas-World 2010 Czarina Gatbonton was asked, “If given another life to live, what you like to be and why?”
Proud and confident, she faces the crowd and the judges by saying:
Magandang Gabi po sa inyong lahat. Akin pong sasagutin ang inyong katanungan sa ating sariling wika, ang wikang Filipino. Kung ako’y pagbibigyan pong muli ng isa pang buhay, mas gugustuhin ko po maging Puno. Puno na nagbibigay sa atin ng hininga, nagbibigay sa atin ng buhay. Maraming Salamat po.
Yes, you read it right. Even our Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach didn’t pass on the opportunity to give the Filipino language a try.
In her second stint in 2014, Pia receives her question in Filipino which she replied in the same manner.
Q: Ano yung pinakamagandang leksyon na maituturo ng isang babae sa buong mundo
Ang isang leksyon na maituturo ng babae sa buong mundo ay yung tiwala sa kanyang sarili. Yung intuition po na tinatawag natin. Pag mayroon ka pong intuition, alam mo po sa sarili saan kung mo ilulugar ang sarili mo sa mundo. Kahit na hindi ka sigurado sa nararamdaman mo o naiisip mo, pero kung alam mo sa intuition mo then magiging successful ka po sa kung anong gawin mo sa buhay mo.
Despite her efforts to translate her answer, her time ended and so did her journey in the Top 15. Nonetheless, we all knew what happened after that.
To all aspiring pageant contestants who are having a hard time perfecting their English-speaking skills, listen up. Your intelligence isn’t based on the language that you speak but it is in the thought of what you say. If you are more confident in expressing yourself in Filipino then that shouldn’t stop you.
In the words of Miss Universe 2012 1st runner-up Janine Tugonon, “No matter language you have, as long as your heart is to serve and to show to people”.
Vee De Serra is a go-getter and a writer driven by passion. When in doubt, Vee believes that "Life isn't fair but it is up to you make it one". As a city and a beach person, when the sun is out, expect Vee to spend hours getting lost in the concrete jungle or laying by the shoreline with both finishing the day by watching a beautiful sunset.