"I Wanted to Leave My Mark" - An Interview with America's Next Top Model 3's Magdalenaby Phil Kural -- 10/01/2004
RNO: What was your main motivation for doing the show, and did you think you would make it to the finals?
Magdalena: My main reason for going on the show was exposure, exposure, exposure! I was just trying to put my face out there. As far as the finals, I honestly was very nonchalant about the whole thing. I could have gone either way. I was in school at the time and just figured that if it was meant to be, it was meant to be. I pretty much just went with the flow the whole time, but I was very happy when I made the finals.
RNO: After you were done with the first shoot, did you have an inkling that you might be the one going home, or did you think there were other girls that you did a better job than?
Magdalena: I honestly didn't think it was going to be me. I had a fairly easy time with the shoot and didn't really get much criticism besides "lift your head up," which is basically just standard direction. A bunch of the girls, including myself, thought it was going to be Ann that was eliminated first, since Jay kept saying that she needed more energy. She was also out there for a very long time, so it didn't cross my mind that I would be eliminated first. I was just like "Well, okay… I guess I'll go pack my bags."
RNO: Looking back, was there anything you could have done differently to stick around after the first shoot?
Magdalena: Nope, I really don't think so. I have a feeling they knew who they wanted, and how they were going to slim down the rest of the cast, and that's up to them. They needed some shock, and that's what my elimination provided. I never got a reason while I was on the show, and still have not gotten a real reason as to why I was eliminated. Tyra said I had all this fire in me, then the photographer said I was empty behind my eyes. Well, so was Ann!
RNO: Did you feel that Kelle was trying to hard to be liked by the other girls or was that naturally her personality?
Magdalena: I think she knew she was starting to get on peoples nerves. She was acting like a know-it-all, and I have a feeling she's been like that her whole life. That's probably why she doesn't have many friends. She wasn't trying to get people to like her because that's just the way she is. I wasn't impressed.
RNO: Were you disappointed that you didn't get to stand in front of the judges and have them critique your picture, or did you breath a sigh of relief because you didn't have to face them?
Magdalena: No way. I was mad that I didn't get to be in front of the judges. At least then they could have said what I was doing wrong and what I could have done differently. All I got was an envelope on a table. I didn't get any criticism or any kind of feedback, and ended up on the plane ride home wondering what I had did wrong.
RNO: What was your favorite part about the whole process of the show?
Magdalena: My favorite part was in Jamaica, right before the shoot when we were doing out makeup, picking out our bathing suits, and just getting excited about the shoot in general. That's why I don't understand why the photographer said I had no fire in my eyes. I was probably the most excited on there!
RNO: Have you been in contact with any of the girls from the finals or the semi-finals since your elimination?
Magdalena: Oh yeah, I talk on a daily basis with Leah, Julie, Jennipher, Yaya, Toccara - I love Toccara. From the semi-finals, I still talk to the other Jenn and Nargis. They were all confused by my elimination as well! Nobody understood why I was cut!
RNO:Are you still hoping to get involved in the modeling industry or was this just a one time thing for you?
Magdalena: Yes, I still want to be a model, and hope to pursue becoming one after I'm done with my last year of nursing school.
RNO: What did your family and friends think about you appearing on the show?
Magdalena: Oh gosh, they were so happy! My mom and dad were carrying around magazines with them and showing the pictures to people telling them that I was their daughter. I had tons of support.
RNO: What was the deal with Ann and Eva? Were they really as condescending as they came across?
Magdalena: Yes and no. They were never that way to be because I consider myself an observer, and what I observed was Eva always finding people that were weak and breaking them down. What you saw on the show was pretty much dead on - Ann was very co-dependant on Eva, and it showed.
RNO: Knowing what you do now, and how stressful the whole career could possibly be, do you think you would do the show again if you had the chance?
Magdalena: I would definitely do the whole thing again only because it's great exposure. You get to do things that professional models don't even get to do - like being on TV. It's an added advantage because America already has a chance to get to know you.
RNO: So what are you up to now? Are you back in school getting your degree again?
Magdalena: Yes, I'm finishing my last year of nursing school, but don't pan on getting into the field right away. I know I'm not getting any younger, but I still want to do modeling. It's important to have my degree to fall back on after I'm done modeling.
RNO: Which of the girls remaining would you say right now has what it takes to be a top model? Is there anyone in particular that you are pulling for?
Magdalena: I would say the only girl that I think has the goods is Norelle. She's the only one with the height and the body, and the overall model look. Some of the girls were like 5'7", and saying they wanted to do high fashion. I was like, "Are you Serious?" Those girls could never do a fashion show, and definitely not high fashion. Maybe some print, but probably not even an editorial. Norelle is the only one that probably could.
RNO: Is there anything you would like to say to your fans or maybe say about the show to clear the record on something?
Magdalena: You know, I was on the show trying to represent for myself, my family, and all the Latinas out there. I just wanted to make my mark and show other Latina women that we need to get our faces out there. Even though I was the first one eliminated, I still feel like I accomplished that.
Phil Kural is a recent graduate from Temple University, with a degree in journalism. You can reach him at email@example.com with any feedback that you may have.
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