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'Sinapian ni Melanie Marquez': Michelle Dee attributes mom for Miss Universe 2023 pasarela

MANILA, Philippines — Miss Universe Philippines Michelle Dee credited her mother Melanie Marquez, winner of Miss International 1979, for her impressive pasarela at the recently concluded Miss Universe 2023 pageant in El Salvador.

Michelle appeared on the November 27 episode of "Fast Talk with Boy Abunda" a few days after arriving back in the Philippines from Mexico where she and several delegates took part in tours and events for the host of next year's pageant.

During the show, Boy discussed with Michelle the latter's performance at Miss Universe 2023, even asking the questions given to the Top 5 and Top 3 queens as Michelle just missed out on entering those rounds despite a strong impression.

Toward the episode's end, Boy began praising Michelle's pasarela, even going as far as to say she "slayed it."

Michelle recounted practicing her runway walks numerous times but still messaged her team after the preliminary round to ask how she did, and the beauty queen was overwhelmed by the reception she received.

"Sinapian ako ni Melanie Marquez," Michelle quipped, which Boy intensely repeated in agreement. "It was just letting go and having fun."

Boy also touched on the collective praise for Michelle's evening gowns, both designed by Mark Bumgarner, particularly the black tattoo-pattern dress inspired by the legendary mambabatok Apo Whang-Od.

"The inspiration was amazing, groundbreaking. I said it so many times, this gown will be iconic and I hope it is," Michelle said. "It's a gown worth celebrating [on] the Miss Universe stage."

Sheynnis Palacios of Nicaragua was crowned the winner of Miss Universe 2023 with Thailand's Anntonia Porsild, Miss Supranational 2019 and now a good friend of Michelle, as the first runner-up.

Michelle did not go home empty-handed despite a Top 10 finish as she also won the fan vote, the Spirit of Carnival Award, a Gold winner for the Voice for Change competition, and was later revealed the winner of the fan-voted Best in National Costume.

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