Comedian Steve Harvey, host of last night’s Miss Universe pageant in Las Vegas, isn’t laughing today.
Instead of announcing Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach (Miss Philippines) as the 2015 winner, he incorrectly named Ariadna Gutiérrez Arevalo, Miss Colombia. Her country was last year’s winner.
While the two may be pageant rivals, both competed in shoes by Chinese Laundry, the official sponsor of the program. According to Bob Goldman, CEO of parent company Cels Enterprises, who was in the audience, “[Harvey] just didn’t call it right. There was a mistake, and it was brutal.”
In keeping with the good manners the pageant contestants are known for, both women handled the awkward moment graciously, said Goldman. “Miss Philippines is fabulous, and said it beautifully in her communication to ESPN after the show about how sorry she was and how she felt. She’s a beautiful person in how she was handling it.”
That’s more than Goldman could say for the contingent from Colombia that attended the event. “There was a silence,” he said. “They wouldn’t leave for about 40 minutes.”
Despite the mishap, Goldman i’s looking forward to continuing Chinese Laundry’s association with the pageant. “I’ve been going to the [event] for years,” he said. “They are pretty interesting.”