Ishan Wilson and Sheda Bryan went home the winners of the Graydon Sealy Secondary School Model Search, which took place last Saturday, April 1st at the school. Wilson was the clear winner of the night and had virtually no competition. The only contestant who came close to challenging him was Jalen Batson. Wilson also took home a special award for the “contestant who made it against the odds.” His mother received a special award as well. As for the girls, it was pretty much a toss up; none of them really stood out as a front runner. The first runners up were Tara-Ann Clarke and Kiros Graham. The second runners up were Janiya Hart and Jalen Batson.
Another winner of the night was Neesha Welch, who beat out Rachel Walcott and Anika Lewis Crawford in the Icon Queens of Song competition.
To say that this year’s Graydon Sealy Secondary School Model Search was underwhelming would be an understatement. The contestants – fifteen of them; ten girls and five boys – were stiff and lifeless in their dancing during the opening number. When it came to their introductory statements, almost all of them stumbled and forgot what they were meant to say, many of them not recovering well and one student altogether giving up and walking away from the microphone. It was a very rough start and the students seemed unprepared.
The theme of the night was “Icons” and the fifteen contestants represented various persons of note, such as Michael Jackson, Rihanna, DJ Puffy, Queen Nefertiti, Kobe Bryant, Josephine Baker, Maya Angelou, Michelle Obama and Malcolm X. The contestants competed in three sections: School Pride, Icons Costume and Haute Couture/Avant Garde.
The fashion on display during the show was, for the most part, very good and the contestants were stylish indeed. However, some of the contestants missed the mark in the Icons Costume and Haute Couture/Avant Garde section.
In the Haute Couture/Avant Garde section they dressed up as the icons they were representing and most of them were not immediately recognisable. Only four of them were; Naomi Norville as Billie Holiday, Kelly-Ann Byer as Michael Jackson, Sheda Bryan as Naomi Campbell and and Tara-Ann Clarke as Queen Nefertiti. Arguably, Ishan Wilson and Jalen Batson were identifiable as Kobe Bryan and Stephan Curry, respectively, but only because the players’ names were on the backs of their jerseys. Despite the contestants stating who their icons were in the beginning, by the time this section rolled around, that had been forgotten.
As with the Lodge School Model Search 2017, in the Haute Couture/Avant Garde section the contestants wore clothing made from recycled materials; newspaper, bubble wrap, bottle caps, CD’s, garbage bags, foil etc. Britney Gunning’s bottle cap dress, Tara-Ann Clarke’s garbage bag dress, Kaneil Cummins and Sheda Bryan’s CD dresses and Kaisha Wilkinson’s soda can dress were all in the spirit of haute couture fashion, but none of the contestants came close to avant garde. Although fashionable, the silhouettes and styles were safe and not out of the box (which is the essence of avant garde fashion).
The lowest point of the pageant was the entertainment portion when the judges went off to tabulate their scores. Not only was it clear that the organisers did not have much of a plan as to what to fill that time with, but the energetic dance performance by dance group Inside Outt deteriorated into what was essentially a skin out competition, which featured two young girls who could not have even been ten years old. Another low point was when contestant Hakeem Maynard halted his entrance during the Icons Costume section and, in an undignified move, took up a microphone and admonished the audience for their silence and demanded he be applauded as he graced the stage.
There was also a slight hick up at the start of the prize giving ceremony; the contestants of the Icon Queens of Song competition were not ready to go on stage. The proceedings were halted in order for them to take their places. Other than that, it went off smoothly and given the good job she did as M.C. here, it’s a wonder why Stephanie F. Chase did not M.C. the entire event.
Here is the full list of winners:
Most Punctual (Male): Hackeem Maynard
Most Punctual (Female): Naomi Norville
Most Improved (Male): Hackeem Maynard
Most Improved (Female): Kaisha Wilkinson
People’s Choice (Male): Ishan Wilson
People’s Choice (Female): Britney Gunning
Most Photogenic (Male): Ishan Wilson
Most Photogentc (Female): Britney Gunning
Best African Wear (Male): Kiros Graham
Best African Wear (Female): Tara-Ann Clarke
Best Street Style (Male): Jalen Batson
Best Street Style (Female): Kaisha Wilkinson
Best School Pride (Male): Kiros Graham
Best School Pride (Female): Sharese Clarke
Best Iconic Depiction (Male): Ishan Wilson
Best Iconic Depiction (Female): Sheda Bryan
Best Haute Couture (Male): Ishan Wilson
Best Haute Couture (Female): Tara-Ann Clarke
2nd Runner Up (Male): Jalen Batson
2nd Runner Up (Female): Janiya Hart
1st Runner Up (Male): Kiros Graham
1st Runner Up (Female): Tara-Ann Clarke
Mr. Graydon Sealy Secondary School Model Search 2017: Ishan Wilson
Ms. Graydon Sealy Secondary School Model Search 2017: Sheda Bryan
Congratulations to all of the night’s winners. Visit our Facebook page for a full album of photos from this event.