What time is best to focus on one’s dreams? Mamus Clarise the current 1st runner-up of Miss Teen Global Beauty Nigeria Pageant delves into this question. As she gears up to represent Nigeria at the Miss Teen Grand Universe Pageant 2021, she takes us through crowning, defying narratives and revolutions.
Tell us about yourself
My full name is Damatie Mamus Clarise, but I prefer to be called Mamus Clarise. I am 19 years old, from Delta State where I was bred until I moved to Lagos State, where I have lived for over 10 years now. Currently, I am studying Information and Communication Technology hoping I can acquire a degree in Creative Arts or Mass Communication at the University of Lagos.
I work as an actor, model and presenter for Teen Africa Tv. I started my career in entertainment as a model in 2016 while in Secondary school, and was opportune to take part in the Maiden edition of Miss Teen Global Beauty Nigeria Pageant where I emerged 1st Runner-up, making me Nigeria’s first teenage representative at the Miss Teen Grand Universe Pageant 2021.
How does it feel to wear the crown?
(Laughs) Honestly, it feels so hectic and privileged at the same time. The hectic part would be that nobody told me competing at Pageantry was so stressful, even more, the series of interviews and trips I have to make, coping with my school and work as an entertainer can be really exhausting. But the most exciting part is travelling to different states and bounding with my “Queen sisters”.
Wearing the crown makes me feel privileged because as the first Nigerian Teenage representative at the Miss Teen Grand Universe Pageant 2021, I feel the need to raise the Nigerian flag high, knowing fully well that I am a representation of not just the teenagers but almost 200 million individuals pushing forward to make an impact.
What can you say about the Nigerian modelling agency and the models themselves, are they up to the world acceptable standards?
Over time, we have presented young, vibrant, intelligent girls I would call “crowning materials”. I also do think the standard of many Nigerian modelling agencies are worthy of accolades. You can tell the catwalk instructors are not here to play and the models understand the techniques of modelling, both on commercials and runways. However, I think if we are going be sincere with ourselves, we will see that there are certain modelling agencies and pageant organisations whose standards are nothing to write home about.
At this point, the crowning of beauty queens should be mainly based on poise in catwalk, your attitude and answer to questions, so there is need to set our priorities right to ensure that it is a fair play and everyone both boys and girls, rich or poor can contest equally, without connections.
How have you helped promote the youth empowerment cause?
At the moment, I am passionate about Teens Empowerment Programs than Youth Empowerment Programs because I feel we have so many individuals between the ages of 20-30 already occupying spaces in the world while teenagers struggle to be seen especially in Nigeria. This is because we have our minds focused on teenagers acquiring a university degree than exploring some of their God-given talents. I aim to change that narrative as a Miss Teen Grand Nigeria.
You are an actor, model, and presenter, do you wish to delve into other sectors and what change do you want to have on these various sectors?
For now, no. I think my hands are full already and so I do not wish to delve into other sectors. Maybe someday in the future as a Lawyer for Human rights but at the moment, my heart is set on the entertainment industry. As an actor, I feel the need to want to raise the standard of acting in Nollywood. I have found that I have really good stories I would love to turn into scripts, produce and direct as well. Stories that will shake Africa and beyond, stories that are symbolic representations of the life around us.
One of the biggest challenges I face as a model is my height, I am not a 6 feet model, (LOL) so I hope that when I walk the runway, teenagers who have been denied opportunities to become international models would see me as an embodiment of the possibility of making their dreams come true regardless of skin colour, height or body size.
Can you tell us about your upcoming or current projects?
I look forward to having my fashion and lifestyle blog soon. Also, one of my upcoming projects as a beauty queen would be the unveiling of the “Me Too” pet project which will kick off this year or the next.
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