In addition to being the reigning Labour Queen, Heidigail Francis, 20, has represented her alma mater, Antigua Girls’ High School, in the 2009 Teen Splash Competition where she placed 2nd runner up.
She admits, however, that Queen of Carnival is a whole different ball game. “I have performed on [the Carnival City] stage before but I think Queen of Carnival is a different atmosphere. It’s a different feeling. So what better place my talent and show that I can be a role model to young girls?”
She hopes to use the show as a platform to give back and highlight the fight against breast cancer.
“Breast cancer is a prevalent issue and many people aren’t’ aware of what a high risk it is in Antigua and Barbuda, and not just for females. So I definitely want to bring awareness to that.”
While focusing on their walk or their interview skills might be paramount for some of the contestants, Heidigail has had to overcome one particular struggle in her bid to become the next Queen of Carnival.
“The most challenging part, so far, has been speaking,” she shared. “Not that I cannot speak or I’m not an intelligent person but, and most people don’t know this, I actually stutter. When I first started my training sessions it was really hard for me to even complete a sentence without stuttering.”
With no sign of faltering Heidigail is excited and confident as she talks about the upcoming show.
“I’m in this pageant to showcase what a great person I am,” she says. “Watch out for me because I’m coming with something different, something creative; and I am definitely bringing the glamour.”
Heidigail will face off against five other young ladies on Monday 28th July at Carnival City in her bid to become Queen of Carnival 2014.