Twenty-four-year-old Abisoye Alagbe aka Adebizz is in a happy mood. The native of Oyo State emerged the Red Carpet Queen International at the maiden edition of the pageantry held on July 31.
Adebizz, who beat eight other finalists to become victorious at the competition, smiled home with a grand prize of N.5 million, $3,000 skincare training, mentorship and product launch scholarship courtesy COC International Beauty School. She also bagged one-year-free make up deal courtesy Jasmine Empire, including one-year-free photo shoot by Judore Studios, among others.
In this chat, the beauty queen opens up on her growing up, dreams and love life.
Tell us about your growing up
It was tough because I did not grow up with my parents. It was one-sided for me, so I have grown to be an independent woman. For me, growing up was tough because mum and dad were not together. So, I was in boarding school throughout.
What was it like growing up without mum and dad?
As a young girl, you always yearn for a father figure around you, most especially when it is Father’s Days. At school, when they had parents’ meeting, mum was the only one coming, acting as father and mother at the same time. I am glad I didn’t allow my experience to sway me from my dreams or change my orientation towards men. I used the experience to build myself.
Are you in good terms with your dad today?
We are, but not as close as it would have been if he had been there physically.
Were you born with a silver spoon?
If you ask all those who knew me growing up, they would probably tell you that I was born with a silver spoon, but it was all packaging. Thanks to mum. From the beginning mum has been packaging us, she makes everything available for her kids and you will not know the struggle behind her show of love.
At what point did you discover you were meant for the screen?
I was six years old when I did. It was after I did an advert for a malt drink company, and my aunty spent the money (laughter).
How did you hear about Red Carpet Queen International beauty pageant?
It was through a close friend. We were supposed to come to the pageantry together, but she was like ‘Adebizz, this is more of your thing, go for it!’ However, eventually, she couldn’t make it, but gave me her blessings, and here we are today.
You met 45 contestants in camp, were you intimidated?
Hmm… you are right, I was. But I had to be myself, so I said I was going to give it all, including my best. And like the pay off for the pageant, ‘Making A Statement’, I was determined to make a statement. I feel that was what happened.
You were in camp for a week, what was that strategy you employed that stood you out?
My strategy? I would say my appearance; outfits and carriage were top notch. I always made sure I looked like the Red Carpet Queen I was aspiring to be. And whatever conversation was going on, I tended to engage myself. I learnt from others and talked smart like a TV presenter and queen.
What was your experience in camp and which of the girls gave you a run for your money?
The two other queens sitting beside me right now did. The Glamour Queen, the Top Model Queen and I were raising the bar for ourselves back-to-back. They were both amazing and I am glad to have the two of them by my side. However, I met beautiful, intelligent and outspoken ladies at the camp. We learnt from each other and bonded well. We were like soul sisters. We did not feel it was a competition because it was healthy. We will grow together, it didn’t end in booth camp; all of us are going to grow together on the platform.
What were you doing before the pageant?
I own a business called Adebizz Fingers. We are into beauty and fashion styling. We produce accessories for sets and photo shoots. We also sell costumes for weddings. I am a model. I am also into modeling and advertising. I have done adverts for few brands and I have been investing in myself.
How about your academics?
Before I went for my degree, I studied for a diploma at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife. I was supposed to go back for my B.Sc, but there was lecturers’ strike, so I left for India where I studied Microbiology at PUNE University. I came back home and was supposed to go for the Youth Service this year, but the COVID-19 pandemic came along, so I opted for the pageant.
Do you have any project you are working on?
Yes, but I wouldn’t want to open up on that right now….
How are your parents taking this?
They are taking it very well because they knew what we were doing and they supported us all through.
Mum supports you, how about your dad?
It was a struggle with dad, but mum made him understand that this is her thing, she has been doing it for years, and he has seen it and so he should please let me be. With that, dad finally gave me his blessings.
Did you get the expected support from your boyfriend?
My boyfriend? (Laughter). You did not even ask if I have one…
Now tell us, what role did he play?
I don’t have a boyfriend for now, but there is someone and we are still getting to know each other. But I am taking things slow because I am at a place in my career where I just want to be with myself. Already, I am a baggage on my own; so I will now be in a relationship and have to be keeping up with phone calls and whatever? Right now, we have been on the road all day and imagine if there was a boyfriend, he will start lamenting, ‘you did not pick my call, you did not do this; you did not do that’. I don’t have strength for that.
What do you look for in a man?
I am not selective, but he has to be smart, ambitious and supportive. And he should have his own money so that he can support my own money. He doesn’t have to overshadow me.
Does he have to be rich?
Yeah… yeah, two of us must be on the same level of financial stability, and support each other.
So you can’t date a poor guy?
Poor guy? Ah… if he is poor, but ambitious, then at least the ambition will propel him to be a better person.
Are you romantic?
I am very, very romantic.
What does love mean to you?
Truth be told, the word love has been taken for granted, because if you say you love someone, you wouldn’t want to hurt that person. But nowadays, you see people hurting the people they claim to love. So, for me, love is understanding each other because there can be no love without understanding.
What are your dreams?
My dreams scare me, so if I should start mentioning them, I may not finish today. But this is just the beginning. I have passion for the media. I am a natural in-front-of-the-camera person.