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HIGHLIGHTS: Miss Universe 2022 coronation night

By PhilSTAR L!fe Published Jan 15, 2023 8:41 am Updated Jan 16, 2023 7:15 pm

Get ready universe, your new queen will be revealed soon!

The Miss Universe organization will finally be choosing from its 84 delegates the next woman to hold the pageant's coveted title on the coronation night happening at 9 a.m. today, January 15, in New Orleans.

Following the preliminary rounds last January 12, the delegates are expected to be narrowed down until they get to the question and answer portion, after which the winning queen will be crowned by Miss Universe 2021 Harnaaz Sandhu with the new "Force for Good" crown.

Miss Universe names Olivia Culpo and Jeannie Mai Jenkins will serve as hosts for the grand event, with Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray and Emmy award winning television personality Zuri Hall joining them as backstage commentators. Performing for the show are New Orleans-based artists such as Big Freedia and Tank and the Bangas, among others.

Bookmark and refresh this page to get the latest updates on the Miss Universe 2022 grand coronation night.

Miss Universe 2022 is R'Bonney Gabriel

Fil-Am Miss USA R'Bonney Gabriel has been named the new Miss Universe 2022.

Miss Venezuela Amanda Dudamel was named 1st runner-up, while Miss Dominican Republic Andreína Martínez was named 2nd runner-up.

Gabriel succeeds India's Harnaaz Sandhu, Miss Universe 2021.

Miss Universe 2021 Harnaaz Sandhu bids farewell in her final walk

Miss Universe 2021 Harnaaz Sandhu has bid farewell to her year-long reign as she graced the pageant’s stage with her farewell walk during the coronation night.

For her final strut, the Indian beauty pageant titleholder donned a gorgeous black gown that sparkles like the starry sky, truly elevated her queenly vibe and made for a magnificent display of the regalness of a leader. 

During her address, she took the time to thank the organization and to everyone who supported her in her journey.

"Thank you to the entire Miss Universe organization for loving me immensely and helping me to make my voice heard. To my beloved country, India, I promise to keep making you proud. To the next Miss Universe, remember to live this year to the fullest because tomorrow is never promised," Sandhu said.

She is set to crown her successor with the new “Force for Good” crown, which symbolizes “goodness and hope for a brighter future.”

El Salvador to host Miss Universe 2023

El Salvador president Nayib Bukele announced that the country will be the host of Miss Universe 2023 happening later in the year.

"El Salvador is changing and we want you to come see it for yourselves. See you soon!" he said in a video.

Miss Universe Top 3 finalists grace the stage for one final strut

In their last chance to impress the crowd and the judges, the final three candidates brought out the best in themselves as they graced the stage for one last time before the big reveal of the winning queen.

Dominican Republic, USA, and Venezuela wore gorgeous dresses that truly enhanced their grace and prestige as Grammy award-winning singer Yolanda Adams sang "I'm Every Woman" by Chaka Khan.

Top 3 go through final Q&A for the crown

One step closer to the crown, the top 3 delegates battle their wits out at the final Q&A round.

All three beauty queens were asked the same question: "If you win Miss Universe, how would you work to demonstrate this as an empowering organization?"

Dominican Republic, USA, and Venezuela were given 30 seconds for their answer for the final round. They were asked by hosts Olivia Culpo and Jeannie Mai Jenkins.

Miss Universe 2022 Top 3 announced

The top 3 contenders for Miss Universe 2022 have been announced, with the crown so close to the competitors' fingertips.

Here are the ladies who are one step closer to the crown.

  1. Andreina Martínez Founier - Dominican Republic
  2. R'Bonney Gabriel - USA
  3. Amanda Dudamel - Venezuela

Miss Universe 2022 candidates strive to impress in Q&A portion

The Miss Universe 2022 final five queens presented their goals and advocacies in the question-and-answer portion of the pageant.

The questions tackled relevant topics about the life experiences of the candidates, social issues, and how they will use the Miss Universe title to further advance their advocacies should they win.

They were asked by the selection committee members, Wendy Fitzwilliam, Mara Martin, Big Freedia, Olivia Quido, and Emily Austin.

Miss Universe honors Cheslie Kryst

Correspondents Catriona Gray and Zuri Hall took time to honor Miss USA 2019 Cheslie Kryst, who lost her life on January 30, 2022.

"I was her first roommate in New York and a correspondent on the 70th show in Israel. Most importantly, she was a loving daughter, a wonderful friend, and an inspiration to so many of us," Catriona Gray said.

Kryst's mother, April Simpkins, was brought on stage to talk about the life of her daughter.

"Just because someone tells you, you're fine, doesn't mean they are. We all need to listen when we check in on our strong friends. Create a safe space, so they have room to share if they are challenged. Most importantly, we need to listen to them to really listen and support them," Simpkins said. "I'm encouraged to announce a partnership with NAMI the National Alliance on Mental Illness, which has established the Cheslie Kryst Memorial Fund for mental health."

"The fund will focus on mental health challenges, including high-functioning depression. I'm honored to be here tonight to share Cheslie's story, and I ask that you share it. Share it with others in hopes that together we can break the stigma and talk more about mental health."

Miss Universe 2022 names the Top 5 finalists

The competition is heating up now more than ever as the Miss Universe pageant has announced the top five queens who are moving onward to the next round. 

Breaking away from the traditional setup, the pageant has opted to go straight to choosing the final five girls who will advance instead of naming the Top 10 first.

Here are the ladies who made it to the top five:

  1. Amanda Dudamel - Venezuela
  2. R'Bonney Gabriel - USA
  3. Ashley Cariño - Puerto Rico 
  4. Gabriëla Dos Santos - Curaçao
  5. Andreina Martínez Founier - Dominican Republic

Philippine bet Celeste Cortesi previously revealed that there was going to be a big cut in the announcement in an interview, saying it caused her fellow contestants to be nervous and scared.

Miss Universe 2022 candidates stun in elegant dresses in evening gown segment

The Miss Universe 2022 candidates embodied the beauty and allure of the night sky during the pageant’s evening gown segment at the coronation night on Sunday, Jan. 15.

The pageant had its 16 remaining candidates capture the hearts of the audience members through their charming smiles and graceful walks as they showcased their embellished gowns crafted by their chosen fashion designers.

While gracing the stage to the groovy song of Louisiana-born artist Amanda Shaw, interesting facts about the queens and their dresses were shared by hosts Olivia Culpo and Jeannie Mai Jenkins.

Miss Universe presents Impact Wayv award to Miss Thailand

Miss Universe owner Anne Jakrajutatip awarded the Impact Wave Award to Miss Universe Thailand Anna Sueangam-iam.

The award is given to the delegate who used their platform and voice to make a real difference. She will also receive $10,000 for her charity of choice.

"This year we collaborate with Impact Wayv, a non-profit organization and social media platform, to create a measurement of what we call here audience engagement and impact. You guys determine who deserve this leadership award," Jakrajutatip said about the award.

Sueangam-iam is a daughter of garbage collectors and an advocate for women's rights, gender equality, environmental awareness, and sustainability. For her evening gown preliminary, she wore dress made of soda tabs in honor of her parents.

Top 16 slay the runway with sizzling swimsuits and capes

The Top 16 delegates walk the Miss Universe runway in their swimwear and personalized capes for the swimsuit competition.

As the queens turned up the heat, New Orleans-grown band Tank the Bangas performed.

For the swimsuit competition, queens got to design their capes with artists from their country. Each garment depicts symbols or issues close to competitors' hearts.

The queens wore footwear by Jojo Bragais on the runway.

Celeste Cortesi ends her Miss Universe 2022 journey

Philippine bet Celeste Cortesi has ended her journey in the Miss Universe 2022 pageant. 

After introducing herself in a shiny purple halter-neck dress by Portia and Scarlett with matching elbow-length gloves, the Philippine bet didn’t make it to the next part of the prestigious tilt.

Celeste was crowned Miss Universe Philippines 2022 on April 30.

The Filipino beauty from Pasay City is no stranger to the pageant scene as she previously participated on Miss Earth Philippines in 2018 and represented the country on the global stage in the same year for Miss Earth, where she managed to make it to the Top 8.

Read more here.

Miss Universe 2022 reveals the Top 16 semifinalists

From a sizable number of 83 delegates, the Miss Universe pageant has now announced the Top 16 queens who will be moving on to the semifinals.

The queens include:

  1. Ashley Cariño - Puerto Rico 
  2. Mideline Phelizor - Haiti
  3. Monique Riley - Australia
  4. Andreina Martínez Founier - Dominican Republic
  5. Payengxa Lor - Laos
  6. Ndavi Nokeri - South Africa
  7. Telma Madeira - Portugal
  8. Amelia Tu - Canada
  9. Alessia Rovegno Cayo - Peru
  10. Tya Jané Ramey - Trinidad and Tobago
  11. Gabriëla Dos Santos - Curaçao
  12. Divita Rai - India
  13. Amanda Dudamel - Venezuela
  14. Alicia Faubel - Spain
  15. R'Bonney Gabriel - USA
  16. Maria Fernanda Aristizabal - Colombia

This is the first time that Laos advanced to the semi-final round of the beauty pageant's 71-year history. She's the sixth delegate of the country to take part in the pageant.

As their names were called by hosts Olivia Culpo and Jeannie Mai Jenkins, they were given a chance to share a little bit about themselves to the world in pre-pageant interviews.

Miss Universe Norway unable to compete after contracting COVID-19

One of the 84 delegates, Ida Hauan from Norway, will not be able to compete for the crown as she has fallen ill, the hosts announced.

Miss Universe on Instagram announced that Hauan contracted COVID-19.

"Unfortunately, Miss Universe Norway @idahauan contracted COVID-19 and will no longer be competing this evening. The Miss Universe Organization and her fellow delegates are saddened to hear this news and are wishing her a speedy recovery," the post read.

Meet the all-female selection committee

Hosts Olivia Culpo and Jeannie Mai Jenkins introduced the night's selection committee, all of whom are women in various industries.

The panel includes Emmy-award winning journalist and author Myrka Dellanos, sports reporter Emily Austin, Miss Universe 1998 Wendy Fitzwilliam, Quido skincare founder Olivia Quido, Viral media PR founder Mara Martin, Roku head of marketing and merchandising Sweta Patel, Miss Universe 2010 Ximena Navarrete, and hip hop artist Big Freedia.

Miss Universe delegates do their signature intros, with performances from Big Freedia, Big Sam's Funky Nation

The 83 delegates of Miss Universe 2022 opened the competition with their introductions as American rapper Big Freedia, Big Sam's Funky Nation, and Amanda Shaw serenaded the crowd with Louisiana jazz music.

The event is hosted by Olivia Culpo and Jeannie Mai Jenkins with commentary from Catriona Gray and Zuri Hall. Tank and the Bangas and Yolanda Adams will also be performing throughout the night.

"This is a show for women, about women, women with grit, and girls with power," Mai-Jenkins said.

The opening looks were provided by Portia and Scarlett.