Have you ever wondered what have all the past winners of Miss Malaysia been up to since their pageant glory days?
Over the years, there has been quite a number of beauties from Malaysia who were chosen to represent and compete at esteemed beauty pageants especially for the big two; Miss Universe and Miss World.
Being crowned as the pageant winner has always been an honour, but then a year later, another winner will rise and all the attention will be on the new beauty queen instead.
The cycle goes on unless the former beauty queen secures a guaranteed career in her life that will continue to maintain her status as a public figure in the eyes of society.
While there are some pageant winners who have found immediate success right after their victory at the local pageant circuit, some have returned to their normal daily routines only to emerge in the limelight once in a while, and some have even disappeared into oblivion (exaggerating-lah) for a more low key life.
We looked at the past Miss Malaysia title holders to find out what they have been up to since their crowning.
Andrea Fonseka was the winner of Miss Universe Malaysia in 2004 and was the former National Director for Miss Universe Malaysia. Fonseka, 30 is of mixed ethnic heritage as her father is of Sinhalese (Sri Lankan), Portuguese, Spanish, and Filipino descent while her mother, Datin Josephine Lena Fonseka who was the champion of Miss Universe Malaysia 1970, is of Chinese descent. She married an Australian, Paul Dewar back in 2010 and currently works as a model, television presenter and actress, predominantly in Malaysia, Singapore and Australia. In 2007 and 2008, Fonseka was voted the world’s sexiest woman for FHM Singapore’s “100 Sexiest Women in the World”. Her recent television involvement was being a guest judge for the second season of “Asia’s Next Top Model”.
She is the winner of Miss Malaysia World in 1999 and Miss Malaysia Universe in 2003 who currently actively works as an actress, TV presenter, model and the occasional lawyer. Born to a Malaysian-Portuguese father and a Peranakan-Chinese descent mother, Daly, now 38, is living proof that a beauty queen can also be smart as she graduated from high school at the age of 14 and is one of the youngest ever to be admitted into law school in Malaysia. She works as one of hosts on NTV7’s “Bella” alongside Deborah Henry and is one of the most sought after emcees in Southeast Asia. In 2010, Daly starred in the 8-episode award-winning miniseries, “Apa Dosa Ku?” where she played Sybil Kathigasu, Daly’s paternal grand aunt who is a Malaysian heroine of the World War II. She was awarded Best TV Actress at the 2010 Anugerah Seri Angkasa for the miniseries. Daly took her career to another level as she directed her first short movie in 2013 titled “Ikal Mayan-Inspektor Mastura” in celebration of International Women’s Day. Last year, Daly married a South African chiropractor, Dr. Nick Boden.
Nadine Ann Thomas
This 28-year-old Malaysian host, model, actress and R&B hip-hop DJ’s career took off after she won Miss Universe Malaysia in 2010. She was born in a mixed parentage household of Indian, Chinese and English ancestry. In 2010, she was nominated as one of the “50 Most Gorgeous” people in Female magazine. She was also cast in the controversial and critically acclaimed 2011 local film by Namewee, “Nasi Lemak 2.0”, where she played Curry Daughter.
Yasmin Yusoff is one of the few well-known Malay pageant contestants who won the Miss Universe Malaysia title back in 1978. Born in Cardiff, Wales to a Malay descent Malaysian father and a German mother, the 60-year-old beauty pageant winner is a veteran actress and singer in Malaysia. Yusoff represented Malaysia for Miss Universe 1978 where she managed to snag the 2nd-runner-up placing for Best National Costume. So far, Yusoff has only released two albums; “Yasmin” (1978) and “Harapan” (1980) as she is more active in TV dramas and movies. Some of her notable films and TV series are; “Mekanik, Selubung”, “Ringgit Kassorga”, “Gol dan Gincu”, “Susuk”, “Hooperz” and “Pisau Cukur”.
Teoh is the beauty queen whom has thus far gotten the highest achievement for Malaysia in the Miss World pageant circuit, as she is the first and only pageant contestant from Malaysia who achieved second-runner-up at the 1998 Miss World pageant. Apart from that, the now 38-year-old filmmaker, actress, TV host and emcee was also crowned Miss World Asia and Oceanic at the world pageant. As a passionate documentary filmmaker, Teoh has produced and directed world-class documentaries for international television channels such as the National Geographic Channel, the Discovery Channel and BBC. Some of her notable works are; “Great Apes of Asia with Michelle Yeoh”, “A Leaders Legacy: Tun Abdul Razak”, “The Lion Dance King” and “Mega Structures: Smart Tunnel”. Teoh is also best known for her role as Susan in the 90s English TV sitcom, “Kopitiam” where she became the runner-up for “Best Actress in a comedy role” at the Asian Television Awards.
Ariana Teoh managed to make it as one of the Top 10 finalist when she competed for Miss World. Teoh, now 42 is the winner of 1997’s Miss Malaysia World and is the ex-wife of the famous Malaysian race car driver, Alex Yoong. Born in Penang, Teoh entered the pageant world when she was 24, and now she is a mother of one child (result of her marriage to Yoong) as she also juggles being a businesswoman who runs an events management company, opting to stay out of the limelight for good.
Probably the most successful Malaysian beauty pageant contestant of all, Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh is now an accomplished International actress, best known for her performance in many Hong Kong action films. The 52-year-old award-winning actress represented Malaysia when she was just 20 at the 1983 Miss World pageant in London. After appearing in a TV commercial with Jackie Chan, she caught the attention many Hong Kong film production companies which led her to where she is today. Yeoh is best known for her roles in the 1997 “James Bond” film, “Tomorrow Never Dies” as well as the martial arts film, “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” directed by Oscar winner Ang Lee. Her latest film involvement is the upcoming “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon II: The Green Destiny” which is currently in production.
Also known as one of the few Muslim pageant contestants who is currently a successful actress, singer, fashion model, TV host and film producer in Malaysia, back in 1992, Fazira won Miss World Malaysia where she entered the Miss World 1992 pageant as Fazira Wan Chek. Shortly after that, Fazira represented Malaysia for Miss South East Asia 1992/1993 where she came in third place. She started making her name in the local film industry in mid 1990s where she played lead roles in “Sembilu”, “Sembilu 2”, “Maria Mariana” and “Pasrah”. Still active in the local industry, the 40-year-old actress latest film is “Longkai” in 2013.
Deborah Priya Henry
Deborah Priya Henry is the titleholder of Miss Universe Malaysia 2011 and Miss Malaysia World 2007 who was selected as the top 16 finalist for the Miss World 2007, the highest placement a Malaysian woman has ever achieved since Lina Teoh in 1998. Though Henry grew up in Kuala Lumpur, she was born in Dublin, Ireland to a Malaysian-Indian father and an Irish-descent mother. The 29-year-old model is currently one of the three hosts for “Bella”, a magazine style talk show alongside Daphne Iking and fellow former Miss Malaysia, Elaine Daly. Now, Henry is also the co-founder of Fugee School, a non-profit charity organization that provides basic education to Somalia refugee children. In 2013, Forbes magazine listed her as one of the top Asian philanthropists for her contribution.
Carey Ng is quite the new addition to this list, but it has been two years already since she represented Malaysia at the 2013 Miss Universe pageant. Born in Putrajaya, Ng is an ex-ballerina and a rhythmic gymnast. At the Miss Universe Malaysia 2013 pageant, the 26-year-old beauty won four out of the eight subsidiary titles of the pageant, including the ELV Boditude Award, A Cut Above’s Miss Crowning Glory Award, Advertlets’ Miss Social Media Savvy Award and the K-Swim Best Body Award. Now, Ng constantly appears on the cover of mainstream magazines like Female Magazine, August Man, FHM and was also cast as the model for TV commercials for MyEG and Malaysia Airlines. Taking over Andrea Fonseka’s place, Ng is currently one of the directors of the Miss Universe Malaysia Organisation (MUMO) to whip all the new contestants to shape for future pageants.
Kavita Sidhu is a renowned Malaysian actress and model as well as the winner of Miss Charm International back in 1990. The pageant no longer exists, but Sidhu certainly still does in our local showbiz scene. Her success had put her name in the Malaysia Book of Records as she is the first Malaysian to have won an international beauty pageant title. Sidhu has acted in quite a number of famous local films with some of her notable films being; “Pontianak Harum Sundal Malam”, “Pontianak Harum Sundal Malam 2”, “Layar Lara” and “Waris Jari Hantu”. The 42-year-old actress was also one of the judges for Miss Universe Malaysia 2012. She now also owns a fashion brand called, Kavita.
Soo Wincci is the titleholder of Miss World Malaysia 2008 and was also an active pageant contestant, joining beauty competitions wherever she could. Before winning the title in 2008, Soo won the Miss Malaysia Intercontinental pageant in 2004 and represented Malaysia for the Miss Intercontinental pageant in China. In the same year, she became the second-runner-up for the Miss Malaysia Oriental World pageant. She also won third place for the Miss Chinatown pageant in 2005. The now 29-year-old former beauty queen is a popular actress, singer, host and model whom is widely known in Malaysia, Taiwan and Singapore.