This year, the homegrown artists of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) are poised to take center stage as they become part of the featured A-list performers in various Casino Filipino venues nationwide.
Bong Quintana, Pagcor’s Asst. VP for Entertainment, said it has been the state-owned gaming firm’s commitment to discover and develop its own artists into world-class Filipino performers.
“The Pagcor management is a staunch supporter and believer in Pinoy talents. Our own homegrown artists are Pagcor’s biggest contributions to the Philippine entertainment and music industry. Nais namin na mabigyan sila ng pagkakataon na maipakita ang kanilang talento kaya sila ay binigyan ng Pagcor ng chance to be featured performers at Casino Filipino. And now, we are launching them to the mainstream entertainment arena.”
According to Bong, the successful shows of Pagcor’s in-house singing group – the Pagcor 5 – inspired them to form new musical groups that will suit the varied preferences of casino patrons and the general public.
“We intend to capitalize on the buzz generated by the Pagcor 5 as we launch our new set of talents for 2014. I am certain that this level of exposure can help our homegrown artists make a breakthrough in the mainstream music industry. At the same time, we know these fresh talents can give our Casino Filipino guests and patrons something new to look forward to,” Bong added.
The musical groups formed by Pagcor’s Entertainment Department include Dash as One Rhythm featuring Pagcor 5 member Dash Camporaso; the Krazy Chikz, an all-female group composed of beauty queens-turned-models-turned-singers-turned-dancers Raine de Guzman, Reyna Yamanouchi, Carin Ramos and Kim Parajes – all Miss Casino Filipino 2012 pageant winners; the Viktors, consisting of the champions of the OPM@PAGCOR talent search Season 1 winner Joyce Tañana, Season 2 winner Froilan Canlas and Season 3 winner Karl Tanhueco; and the K Menn, a singing trio formed in 2013 whose all-male members, Steev Fernandez, Mykle Benedicto and Eeboy Quizol, were also finalists of the OPM@PAGCOR singing search.
According to Quintana, the singing groups will focus on different genres which will give casino patrons more choices of entertainment. Dash as One Rhythm will be playing almost all genres. The K Menn will be focusing on novelty songs, ballads and classics. On the other hand, the Krazy Chikz will be dancing and singing pop and modern songs. The Viktors will be rendering OPM, ballad and contemporary pieces.
Camporaso said that although she has been part of the Pagcor 5 for years, those who will be watching the One Rhythm band shows can expect more from her as an artist.
Tañana, for her part, lauded Pagcorfor giving budding local artists like her a chance to showcase their musical flair.
Canlas shared how performing at Casino Filipino has changed his life. “Noong manalo ako, maraming nangyari na nagpabago ng buhay ko. I was able to perform with different celebrities like David Pomeranz, Randy Santiago and others. Nakapag-patayo din ako ng business, music school, recording and rehearsal studio,” Canlas narrated.
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Actress Kylie Padilla Recovering From Fatigue
There is a great resemblance between Kapuso actress Kylie Padilla and that of her character, Ada, on the telefantasya “Adarna.”
If Ada is known for being courageous in protecting her loved ones, so is Kylie who has been extending the same to her family and fans.
Over the weekend, Kylie, with her leading men Mikael Daez, Benjamin Alves and Geoff Eigenmann, went to Cagayan De Oro and Marilao, Bulacan to personally thank their supporters.
Because of nonstop work, it was unfortunate that the daughter of action star Robin Padilla was rushed to St. Luke’s Medical Center at The Fort last Monday.
According to the actress’ manager, Betchay Vidanes, they are all hoping for Kylie’s quick recovery so she could resume taping for “Adarna.”
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Psyhco Drama ‘Obsession’ Premieres Tonight On TV5
“Obsession,” a psycho-drama starring Marvin Agustin, Martin Escudero, Neri Naig and Bianca King, premieres tonight at 8 on TV5.
With this newest Thursday prime time series (it replaces “For Love Or Money”), Wilma Galvante, TV5’s Chief Entertainment Content Officer, said, “we’re breaking the habit.”
She believes “there’s more story to tell in a one-hour weekly show… it’s a different treat, a different menu but entertaining. ‘Obsession’ is very challenging, and it’s very different from the usual drama love story offerings.”
“Obsession” is the story of Bernadette (portrayed by Neri Naig), a young chemist driven by heartbreak to undergo extensive cosmetic surgery to make her former boyfriend fall in love with her again.
Directed by Jay Altarejos, “Obsession” has Bernadette growing highly insecure and unhappy about herself so she has the tendency to be possessive. This changed when she met, fell in love and became obsessed with James (Martin Escudero), a playboy. When they broke up, Bernadette tried to end her life. She survived but with a badly damaged face.
Ramon (Marvin Agustin), a famous cosmetic surgeon, offers Bernadette a new life by changing her face and identity. Bernadette becomes Vanessa (Bianca King), determined to seek revenge by making James fall in love with her again.
Also in the cast of “Obsession” are Elizabeth Oropesa and Maureen Mauricio.
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Tidbits: Happy b-day greetings today, Jan. 23, go to Justice Manuel Lazaro, “Umagang Kay Ganda” and “It’s Showtime” segment host Kim Atienza, Raymond Gutierrez, Pinky Marquez, Dondon Monteverde, US-based Benny Yalong, Weena Y. Sy, Emerenciana Arcellana, Elisa Manebo of Sitio Lucia Resort, Dr. Toto Salgado, Prof. Wilhelmina Antonio, Rosalina Ellsworth, Vicente Singian, Marilyn Altajeros, Nini Jorse, Ligaya S. Fernandez, Franklin Tenorio, Besilda M. Mandapat, Janet Relos, Neil Gaylor, Armando Bernabe, Belen Aliazas of Tagum, Davao, Herbert Magtoto of New Jersey, USA, Purita P. Dagang of California and MB columnist Shirley Matias-Pizarro… Happy wedding anniversary to Joey and Liny Sy…
Rumors have it that some GMA-7 artists are transferring to TV5 because Kapatid Chairman Manny Pangilinan is soon buying the Kapuso Network. The latest GMA-7 talent who had seemingly jumped fences is dramatic actress Bianca King.
While a top TV5 official refuted the rumor, he thanked GMA-7 for having allowed Bianca to do a special project with their network, the psycho-drama series “Obsession.” The weekly show airs on Jan. 23 at 8 p.m., then every Thursday thereafter.
The official praised GMA-7 for sharing its talents with another TV network. He stressed that such a gesture is a healthy development in the entertainment industry.
Bianca King’s contract with GMA-7 is about to end, and there’s no definite word yet if it will be renewed or allowed to expire.
“My appearance on a TV5 special project is a great opportunity for me to spread my wings,” Bianca said. “It’s a new challenge, it’s a new role for me.”
Bianca, playing the role of Vanessa, undergoes several, serious transformations – from a distressed woman to an obsessed lover who will undertake anything regardless of cost just so she could get back her former boyfriend James (played by Martin Escudero). Such transformations include heavy cosmetic reconstruction of her face and body.
“The project is hard to resist,” Bianca said on why she immediately accepted the project. “It is more challenging than any previous roles I have played in other drama series. The role gives me the opportunity to try several emotions.”
“Any serious actress is always ready to try a heavy role,” Bianca added. “‘Obsession’ is an opportunity for me.”
Bianca studied movie directing and has helmed commercials.
“Obsession” also stars Marvin Agustin, Neri Naig, Maureen Mauricio and Elizabeth Oropesa.
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Solenn Heussaff Loves Cute Role In ‘Mumbai Love’
Multi-talented Solenn Heussaff is excited about her latest movie “Mumbai Love,” a cross-cultural romantic comedy produced by Capestone Pictures and slated to open in local theaters tomorrow, Jan. 22. “I’m very excited because it’s not only a fun movie to watch by the whole family, but also because it provided me with a great learning experience.”
She added: “This project is very dear to my heart because in my entire showbiz career, first time ko to play a cute role na hindi ako malandi.” Solenn revealed that she auditioned for the role and she’s glad she got it.
Comparing herself to her character as Ella in “Mumbai Love” (which we mistook to be an entry to the recently concluded 2013 Metro Manila Film Festival in an earlier column), Solenn said, “’Yung character ni Ella, may ganyang part din ako sa totoong buhay, but sa itsura ko, people (have) mistaken me as isnabera. Actually, I’m really a joker, parang si Ella; she’s really a happy person. She’s the light side of life, wala siyang masamang loob – she always finds something in every person she meets.”
But why a Filipino-Indian movie? The multi-awarded director Benito Bautista said, “The whole concept came from Neil (Jeswani), the executive producer and founder of Capestone Pictures. We had a conversation and discussed about articles on arranged marriage in India and here in the Philippines. Neil is a super dandy guy and he loves comedy. He said, ‘Do you think we can express articles like this in a comedy form?’ And I said, ‘Sure, why not?’ And together with Emma Francisco, we did research to authenticate what we partially knew when we started the project.”
On his part, Neil said “When we did this film, I had the blessing of my family. We discussed about the possibility of the film as a way of opening Indian culture to Filipino audiences. I talked with some members of the Indian community and they were all very excited about the project. The story is all about respect for both the Filipino and Indian cultures. It’s a doorway to open to other cultures too, may possibility na mag-work…”
As to the actor who plays Solenn’s leading man, Direk Benito said, “Meticulous ang paghahanap namin ng actor to play the role who’s supposedly a Pinoy-Indian and who will be representing the Indian culture. For almost two months, wala kaming makita until dumating si Kiko Matos.
“Ang maganda sa kanya, he can project the persona of a travelling, young Pinoy-Indian businessman – at the same time, he can also play a romantic fellow, which is very important. ’Saka sabi niya, when he was young, ang tukso sa kanya ‘bumbay,’ so he wants to represent ’yung prejudice na ’yan through his role in the film.”
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Tidbits: Happy b-day greetings, Jan. 21, go to Mrs. Gretchen Cojuangco, twins Richard and Raymond Gutierrez, Mrs. Nelly F. Villafuerte, Glaiza de Castro, Claire Serrano, Dobbie Aranda, Rodolfo Palma, Nida Santos, Willie Puyat Reyes, Arnel Dulay, Ivie Casas, Tofan Han, Br. Adrian Lopez of the De La Salle Brothers of the Philippines, Reg Medina, Josef Vichuaco, Vina Sevilla, Jabellen So, Sam Farinas, my Rhode Island-based nephew Mark Parlan, MB’s Brenda Piquero and Star Magic’s JR Siaboc, Panky Trinidad and EJ Jallorina…
Parokya ni Edgar frontman Chito Miranda admires his girlfriend, celebrity Neri Naig’s “strength” even amid controversy, and more so now that she has finally returned to work.
“She’s unbelievably strong but not thick-skinned. She took it hard—kumbaga sa boxing nasuntok talaga siya ng malakas—but when you are surrounded by people who love you, it makes everything easier,” he said, referring to a controversial video they were part of a few months back.
He did not detail her current projects except that the offers to her were made before the “incident” happened, and more importantly, these stand even after all.
“After the incident, she didn’t want to work muna but ‘yung mga TV stations, parang sinasabi nila na, ‘We don’t care about that—we want you to be on the show no matter how big or small the role is.’ They were all very supportive, just like our friends that didn’t make an issue out of it as well,”
They have “plans” regarding marriage though Chito finds it “corny” discussing it publicly.
“It’s something to be discussed na personal with people pero siyempre, when you are in a relationship, you always want to think na this would be it,” said he who will be spending this Christmas with Neri in Dubai.
Looking back on 2013, the singer-songwriter is happy that the storms they weathered served to remind them just how much they are loved.
“It’s a blessing, an inspiration. It’s an example also to be more responsible.”
Parokya ni Edgar has just released “Bente” under Universal Records in time for their 20th year anniversary in the business.