It’s a Hat-Trick for Iceland with Three Titles: Miss Iceland, Miss World Northern Europe and Miss World 2005
Iceland has won Miss World 2005, watched from the audience by her mother – herself a former Miss Iceland and a contestant in Miss World 1983. For the third time in the history of the pageant, the Miss World crown is tonight worn by a beautiful young girl from Iceland.
“I am still in shock,’ the new Miss World 2005 said in an exclusive interview for the Miss World website. “I did not hear my name at first, I just heard it echo around the room. I only knew it was me because nobody else moved! Then it all came true “It is wonderful to know that so many people voted for me in the text vote and put me through to the top two in Northern Europe. I was pleased to win the title of Miss World Northern Europe. Then to win Miss World is incredible. I just feel wonderful. It came as a big shock but the feeling is incredible. I am numb.”
Unnur Birna Vilhjalmsdottir, 21, is a student of law from Reykavik, Iceland. While in China on a four-week tour with the other 101 Miss World contestants, Unnur has even found time to continue her studies. “I brought my law books with me and study in the evenings after dinner,’ she said. “My room mate Denmark is always laughing at me about it. Tonight she was one of the first to congratulate me. She was in tears because she was so happy for me.
Unnur’s mother Unnur Steinsson represented Iceland in Miss World 1983 – the last time a UK girl won the title – and came in the top five. Now her daughter has gone that all important step further and taken the crown as Miss World 2005 – and her mother was in the crowd to wave her Icelandic flag with vigour.
“My mum gave me some advice for how to behave and it seems to have worked. She told me to be myself, not be fake in any way, and to relax. I am so pleased that she was able to be here to see me win the title.”
Her mother said brimming: “I am just speechless, there are simply no words to describe my feelings right now. Let me just say it was an incredible moment watching her be crowned as Miss Northern Europe. I am now totally beside myself with joy to see her as Miss World.”
In the car on the way to the Miss World Coronation Ball, Unnur spoke on the phone to her father, grandmother and grandfather at home in Iceland, celebrating after watching the contest live on Icelandic television for the first time ever. “They are so happy for me, I cannot say how that makes me feel right now,’ said a tearful Unnur. “My two younger brothers were at the party, too, and they are all very excited.”
While the crown has not had time to settle on her head, Unnur has already set her sights on some key achievements during her reign as Miss World 2005. She said: “I want to spend a lot of time travelling to work with people where we can make a difference. That is what life should be all about.’
“No former Miss Iceland has done charity work and my goal is to change that. My grandfather died of lung cancer and so I feel very strongly about supporting cancer victims.”
Unnur, who lives at home with her mother and step father, is a true all rounder and a perfect role model for young women worldwide. As well as being a student, she is a professional dancer in major shows in Iceland and also a dance teacher.
While others worked in the local store during their summer break, Unnur chose a more unusual job – she spent the summer months as a police officer at her local airport. “It was a really interesting job and I even got to arrest two people – for drink driving. It was very different to how my life will be as Miss World as I had to wear a uniform and had my hair up. I couldn’t even wear make up!”
Of her time in China, Unnur has one thing to say: “Thank you China, thank you Sanya. The whole experience of Miss World has been really amazing – and I know that the excitement and good work is only just beginning. I would like to thank everybody for all their support, especially those who voted for me. I will make you proud as Miss World 2005.”
Unnur was born in the Capital Reykjavik but grew up in a small town called Seltjarnarnes a suburg of Reykavik. She is the chairman of the college social club and teaches dance, she also enjoys acting, singing, all types of dancing, snow-boarding, hiking, camping, horsemanship and has a special talent for choreography and playing the piano.
Source: Miss World home page