Jun 23, 2006. Before leaving for the “Miss Universe”-2006 contest, Inna Tsymbalyuk was blessed by the Church

Before their departure to the USA, Inna Tsymbalyuk (“Miss Ukraine Universe-2006”), Aleksandra Nikolaenko (national director of the “Miss Ukraine Universe” contest) and Diana Dorozhkina (a modeler) visited Svyato-Uspenskaya Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, where they asked the Most Reverend Metropolitan Vladimir for a blessing. One of reasons behind the visit to Lavra and to the residence of the Head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church was that Inna, being an Orthodox believer, had incorporated orthodox cultural motives in her performance.


A costume which Inna will put on during the contest is made in the Old Byzantine style with fragments from the Kyivan Rus era. Kyivan princesses, including Olga, used to dress exactly like that. Descriptions of Olga’s dresses in the chronicles were used as a basis to make the modern dress. The head dress is especially impressive, being a stylization of the Svyato-Uspenskiy Cathedral domes and decorated with beads. “The idea to picture Ukraine in the context of Kyivan Rus was realized completely”, the dress designer Diana Dorozhkina said. For two months eight people were doing the laborious handiwork, bringing the idea to esthetic perfection. Said Aleksandra Nikolaenko, director of the national “Miss Ukraine Universe” contest: “The main objective was to demonstrate to the world not only the external beauty of Ukrainian ethnos, but also to convey the deep internal spiritual side of the Orthodox civilizaition”. After the reception by Mitropolitan Vladimir all members of the group prayed in the Refectory Church.