Xiao Dai (小呆), a former professional model and founder of Xinjiang Rainbow Group ( 新疆彩缘工作组), a HIV advocacy and outreach group targeting men who have sex with men, has arrived in Oslo, Norway to represent China at the Mr Gay World pageant to be held in Oslo this weekend. The event will see 24 contestants from five continents compete for the title of Mr Gay International.
Although the event which was scheduled to be held on Jan 15 was cancelled at the last minute by Beijing police due to permit issues, the 25-year-old who hails from a Muslim family in Xinjiang province was selected by a panel of judges, according to Danlan, a Chinese gay web site.
Mr Gay World 2010 director Tore Aasheim told AFP: "Chinese authorities did not want a Chinese contestant to come to Norway to take part in our pageant but thanks to the Norwegian embassy, which rushed his visa delivery, the participant arrived yesterday (Tuesday) in Oslo."
"It is very courageous on his part to have taken the risk to leave his country to take part in an event to which Chinese authorities are hostile," Aasheim said. "In Beijing, all the contestants were gathered in one room and police clearly indicated they did not want a Chinese participation in the pageant."
Other Asian representatives at the Mr Gay World pageant:
Mr. Gay Hong Kong
Rick Dean Twombley (33)
Hobbies: Working Out, Writing, Video Editing, Choreography, Reality Television
Profession: Professional Dancer/Aerialist
Mr. Gay Philippines
David Noel Bosley (36)
Hobbies: Reading, singing, movies
Profession: Visual Merchandiser
Mr. Gay Thailand
Sorawit Piamthongkum (34)
Hobbies: Music, Movie, Cooking, Swimming and Weight Training
Profession: IT System Analyst