Posted by Rafiq A. Tschannen
Published: Dec 19, 2011 16:53 Updated: Dec 19, 2011 17:07
KUALA LUMPUR: A Malaysian Muslim woman was crowned the best preacher in a televised Islamic reality TV show that aims to change conservative mindsets on the role of women in Muslim societies, passing tests on lecturing as well as renovating mosques.
The 13-episode primetime program titled “Solehah,” an Arabic word meaning “pious female,” judged young Muslim women on their religious knowledge, oratory skills and personality.
The show followed on the heels of the hit Islamic-themed show “Imam Muda,” or Young Imam, which has taken place on a rival TV station to seek the best Imam, or male Muslim leader.
From auditions in June that drew at least 600 Muslim women aged between 20 to 30, the program whittled them down to 10 finalists for the final broadcast in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur on Friday.
Clad in colorful traditional Malay clothing with headscarves, the 10 took turns presenting Islamic teachings on moral values on a stage whose magenta lights at times seemed more suited to a song contest.