It is curtain down on the 2022 spectacle and welcome Miss IndiaNZ 2023

 

 

Beyond beauty stands cultural and social elegance: Judges Dr Aafreen Vaz, Ashika Clarke and Colin Mathura-Jeffree with twenty participants at Miss IndiaNZ 2022 (Photo by David Watson)

Venkat Raman
Auckland, October 23, 2022

The curtain call for this year’s Miss IndiaNZ was also the curtain raiser for Miss Indianz 2023, which Producer-Director Dharmesh Parikh promised will be ‘better and bigger.’

If this year’s event, held on October 20, 2022, at Sky Theatre in Auckland CBD was any indication, you would have reason to believe him implicitly.

Miss IndiaNZ 2022 Lourdes D’Souza with Leah Karuppen (left) and Astrid Aarons (Right) respectively the 1st and 2nd Runners-Up (Photo by David Watson)

Reflection of diversity

About 700 men and women packed the venue to watch 20 participants perform on stage. They were various ethnic groups and backgrounds, adding value to New Zealand’s rising status as a multicultural, multi-religious and tolerant country. Among them were former Miss IndiaNZ finalists, winners and contestants, some of them having achieved fame here and elsewhere as entrepreneurs, professionals and models. They added strength to the belief that more than a pageant, this event celebrates culture, talent and most importantly, self-confidence.

                 Anjali Israni                                                        Freya Irani                                                       Pallavi Kapur

The participants adorned the stage in a variety of attire, chosen for and by them including a few sponsors. They let themselves in gay abandon, oblivious of not only the audience in front of them but also the fact that they were being judged and that some titles and prizes were at stake at the end of the programme. They danced, posed and answered questions from the three-judge panel. All that seemed to matter was that it was their moment to enjoy.

Beyond a beauty contest

Miss IndiaNZ events have transcended the beauty contest cult, emphasising the importance of the inner self than the outer physique. This is an event that makes each participant believe that beauty comes from within and that it is a wholesome word encapsulating the best of a person, including his or her culture, tradition, the outlook in life and demonstrable talent.

Mr Parikh, Director of Reshabh D Parikh Productions, which presents Miss IndiaNZ events for Rhythm House Events was justly proud that a critic acclaimed the event as “a celebration of Kiwi-Indian elegance, fashion, music and dance.”

                Esha Sharma                                                     Enna Gupta                                      Ranchita Manocha 

“On October 20, 2022, Auckland’s iconic SkyCity Theatre was transformed into a Bollywood wonderland as twenty gorgeous Kiwi-Indian contestants went for gold to win the prestigious Miss IndiaNZ 2022 title. As contestants battled it out in a wide variety of categories, spectators were treated to an extravaganza of elegance, fashion, music and dance that blends the very best of Indian and New Zealand cultures,” he said.

Soul-soothing music

The musical interludes with Amrita Kaur were the highlights of the evening, adding yet another dimension to Miss IndiaNZ events. She executed the Raags with a certain fineness that is exclusive to Masters of Music. A Quantity Surveyor (Architect) by profession, she effortlessly switched between high and low Aalaap proving her pursuit of excellence. She was ably accompanied by Dharmesh Parikh on the keyboard, Basant Madhur (a Tabla Teacher and Performer) on the Tabla and Arad Hanif on the Octopod.

                      Soulful music made divine by Amrita Kaur, Dharmesh Parikh, Basant Madhur and Arad Hanif

There were also performances by ECANS Dance Academy, Eternal Bhangra and Epsom Nazariya.

Celebration of elegance

For those who loved fanfare and razzle-dazzle, this event was unmissable. It was an ultimate celebration of the Kiwi-Indian culture, showcasing a unique and diverse mix of ethnic backgrounds, talents and passions.

The panel of Judges, including Dr Aafreen Vaz, Ashika Clarke and Colin Mathura-Jeffree, named Lourdes D’Souza winner of the Miss IndiaNZ Title and Leah Karuppen and Astrid Aarons as the 1st  and 2nd Runner-Up.

The following participants were winners of various Preliminary Titles:
Miss Beautiful Smile: Nalini Singh and Sneha Satish (Tied)
Miss Beautiful Hair: Raina Varghese
Miss Potential Model: Nitika Arora
Miss Friendship: Zeal Gandhi
Miss Photogenic: Tisha Wadhwa
Miss Talent: Sia Pal
Miss Popular: Freya Irani

                                Sneha Sathish                                                               Sia Pal

Search for Miss IndiaNZ 2023 begins

Mr Parikh has made an early announcement for Miss IndiaNZ 2023, saying that with a host of national and international programmes and the general election, it will be a busy year.

“Open to women of Kiwi-Indian descent aged 16 and over, Miss IndiaNZ is the ultimate celebration of culture, fashion, dance and music. Up for grabs are $3000 worth of prizes, plus the chance to launch a career in the exciting world of entertainment,” he said.

According to him, Miss IndiaNZ is a launchpad into acting, modelling and entertainment.

                                                         Masters of Ceremonies Hemant Parikh and Sinthia Kumar

“This event also enables contestants to gain more confidence and is an outlet to express and celebrate their unique heritage. The audience is treated to a spectacular show unlike anything else on offer in Auckland,” he said.

Mr Parikh said that training workshops are conducted by industry professionals in the lead-up to the event. Contestants will be promoted by New Zealand’s leading ethnic media, including Radio Tarana and Indian Newslink, he said.

“While many beauty pageants focus primarily on contestants’ physical attributes, Miss IndiaNZ provides a platform for contestants to showcase all their talents, with categories such as Kiwi Girl, Made in India, Talent and a Q & A section. Entries are now open for Miss IndiaNZ 2023. We will announce the date of the event in due course,” he said.

Pictures by David Watson and Peter Jennings

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