Frencheska Farr

September 30th, 2011

Marie Frencheska Mae Tobias Farr or simply Frencheska Farr was born on September 9, 1992 and is famous in Philippine showbusiness for her bagging the Next Female Big Star prize in GMA-7’s Are You The Next Big Star contest. More than that, though, she is an intriguing young talent on the way to bigger and better things as she gains greater recognition for herself.

Frencheska is half British through her father’s side and half Filipino through her mother’s. She has burst into the Philippine music and showbusiness scene very recently in 2009 when the aforementioned Are You the Next Big Star contest was launched. Unlike many of the recent reality show TV contests, it focused on singing talent and was hosted by Asia’s Songbird, Regine Velasquez and co-hosted by Keempee De Leon. The thousands of contestants had been narrowed to 150 and then subsequently to 40 and finally to a “circle of 16” where Frencheska always maintained her status as a favorite among the public. Her final song in the contest “Queen of the Night” by Whitney Houston ultimately won for her the title of The Next Female Big Star as well as a million Pesos and a management contract from GMA Artist Center. Geoff Taylor would also win that night as The Next Male Big Star opposite Frencheska.

Right after being proclaimed the Next Female Big Star, she has since worked hard to make herself worthy of that distinction. In TV, she began appearing in GMA shows such as in the Sunday variety show SOP. She was also a regular in the game show BandaOke which was hosted by Jaya and Allan K. Here, she was part of the BandaOke band which sang the songs that contestants had to guess the lyrics to.

In late 2009, Frencheska appeared in episodes of the GMA Christmas drama Sana Ngayong Pasko which starred industry greats Susan Roces, Christopher de Leon and Gina Alejar.

The next year, her TV commitments still continued with the Sunday show Party Pilipinas which replaced SOP. Here, she had the role of one of the “Divas” alongside singing powerhouses like Rachelle Ann Go and Kyla and Pinoy Pop Superstar winners Aicelle Santos and Jonalyn Viray.

But the next big thing for Frencheska would come through the role of a Filipino musical on the silver screen, which is actually a rarity nowadays in Philippine Cinema. This would be Emir, a movie about a Filipina who works as an OFW domestic helper in a fictional Arabian country and here, Frencheska would be described as a revelation in her lead role status. What made her inclusion in this film even more amazing was the fact that many other actresses and singers had vied for the role and many of them were already big names in showbusiness. In fact, KC Concepcion herself had been a favorite when it came to picking a suitable actress for the role.

Upon auditioning for the role, Frencheska had some worries as acting was not yet her forte. However, as she and her mother were already on their way to the audition, they decided to just give it a go. She was made to sing one song from the movie and after that was asked to return for a makeup test, and after that, she found out that she got the dream role. In an interview, the director, Chito Roño later mentioned how impressed he was with the newcomer and how much of a perfect fit she was for the role.

And once the movie was released, Frencheska won over many new fans who had marveled at her performance and singing, while the movie itself was praised by critics for trying something new and succeeding admirably.

In that same year, another boost to her career occurred with Inside My Heart, Frencheska’s debut album’s release. Many of its singles were also chosen by GMA to be used as theme songs for its TV dramas.

Only two years has passed since this spectacular talent appearing in the showbusiness scene but based on how much trust is being given to her by her home network, GMA, as well as the stellar performances she’s had so far, Frencheska really is The Next Big Star.

Alessandra De Rossi

September 29th, 2011

When Alessandra de Rossi started her career in Philippine showbusiness, she was first known simply as the younger sister of Assunta de Rossi. But rather than stay in the shadow of her sister’s fame, she has distinguished herself as a high-caliber actress very early in her career. She started to win accolades and awards due to her performances and many have praised her as being a natural talent when it comes to acting. Nowadays, the name of Alessandra is rarely mentioned merely as a comparison to Assunta’s career but rather to refer to a beautiful celebrity with a successful career all her own.

Alessandra or Alessandra Schiavone de Rossi was born on July 19, 1984 to an Italian father and a Filipina mother. In her family, it had been her sister Assunta who had first joined showbusiness through the legendary That’s Entertainment and achieved status as a national celebrity when she began having a more prominent role in the GMA gag show Bubble Gang.

Though Alessandra would appear in a supporting role for Star Cinema’s Mystrio in 1998, it would be in the movie Hubog alongside her sister where she would first be noticed by the public. Here, the two play the role of orphaned sisters who’ve fallen on hard times. Alessandra played the role of Nikka, a mentally-handicapped girl who, unknown to her sister, gets sexually molested by the men around them. Critics praised the acting of Alessandra in the movie and dubbed her as someone who would be the next big star after her sister.

Alessandra’s next role would gain more praise for the young actress and would end up bagging for the 16-year-old a FAMAS award for Best Supporting Actress. This would be for the 2001 movie Azucena where she played the role of an innocent young girl who befriends a gruff, old butcher of dogs played by Dante Rivero. As the two share an unlikely friendship, the young girl learns about the world through the old butcher while the butcher tries to protect her from her lecherous father.

She would continue to prove her mettle in various movie and TV roles such as in Mga Munting Tinig where she played the role of a young idealistic substitute teacher who decides to teach children in a remote village. On TV, she would appear mostly in GMA shows such as in the youth-oriented Click where she was part of the main cast and in Kung Mawawala Ka, a political thriller, where she played the role of the granddaughter of a powerful politician, who was in turn played by the great Eddie Garcia.

In 2002, a public feud erupted between Alessandra and Assunta when Assunta married Representative Jules Le Desma who was 22 years older than her through civil rites. It was conspicuous to the members of the press how both Alessandra and her mother were absent during the ceremony. The press would speculate about the reasons for this and it would be revealed shortly that Assunta was then estranged to her mother and sister who were both against the marriage. After a year, though, Assunta would have already reconciled with the two by the time she has another wedding, this time a Church wedding. Their entire family flew to the Philippines from Italy and that included their father, Luigi Schiavone, as well as their two younger sisters, Margherita and Isabel. Alessandra would also serve as the maid of honor in this wedding.
Alessandra’s career would continue to flourish even leading to a role in a 2005 Korean horror film, The Maid. Here, Alessandra played the titular maid who travels to South Korea to work but through a clash of cultures ends up getting more than she bargained for.

In TV, she worked mostly in GMA productions in dramas and fantasy series like Darna, Etheria, Kamandag and Super Twins. However, from 2008 till the first part of 2011, she would be an ABS-CBN star appearing in such notable hits as I love Betty La Fea, Maalaala Mo Kaya episodes, Tayong Dalawa and Agua Bendita.

From the young girl who emerged from her sister’s shadow to today’s confident, experienced celebrity, Alessandra’s acting talent continues to shine while Filipino viewers enjoy the privilege of seeing this rare natural on screen.

Isabel Oli

September 27th, 2011

Her real name, Maria Olivia S. Daytia, might not ring any bells for most fans of Philippine showbusiness but her screen name, Isabel Oli, is one that readily conjures up an image of female beauty and sophistication.

This young lady from Cebu with Filipino, Spanish and Chinese roots first came to national attention when she started appearing in TV commercials. The commercial that got the most attention, though, at this early stage in her career was her Max’s commercial with screen hunk Piolo Pascual. So popular was this commercial that viewers wondered who “Isabel”, the beautiful young lady on screen was and years later, the two would eventually reprise their roles to create a continuation for the fabled commercial.

With the name Isabel in the minds of TV viewers, it was decided that Isabel Oli would be her screen name once she launches her career. She signed up with ABS-CBN shortly after and appeared in It Might Be You, a drama series that starred John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo. Though it was only a supporting role, the show did get her noticed by many and served to get her more comfortable with appearing on TV. That same year, she next appeared in an episode of Maalaala Mo Kaya alongside John Prats.

The year 2005 signaled a big change in isabel’s career as she leave her current network and begin a long working relationship with GMA-7. Her first work with the station was already in a lead role capacity as she becomes the leading lady of Richard Gutierrez in the primetime show Sugo. The show dealt with fantasy themes of good versus evil and had a story that revolved around two twin brothers who were both played by Richard Gutierrez. One of the twins would fight for good while the other would fight for evil but both of them would end up falling for Isabel’s character who was also named Isabel.

Other roles would quickly follow but with Sugo’s success, Isabel’s status as a young actress who could play the lead was assured. The next year, Isabel would appear in the GMA shows I Luv NY, Love to Love and Atlantika. Atlantika was another fantasy primetime series and in it, Isabel took on the role of a princess who was potentially the pre-destined lover of the lead character Aquano who was played by GMA-7 lead Dingdong Dantes.

Her next projects would be appearances in GMA’s Mga Mata ni Anghelita, Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang and another lead role in Maging Akin Ka Lamang with Nadine Samonte, Polo Ravales and Carlo Aquino. Here, Isabel switched gears and showed more of her improved acting skills by not portraying the sweet, innocent female she normally does but instead gets the role of a wealthy, spoiled brat.Her next big role, in the superhero fantasy series Gagambino with Dennis Trillo is also unique as here she played Alakdanessa, a lass with the powers derived from a scorpion.

Her acting wouldn’t be limited to the small screen as she would appear in several films including GMA Films’ Moments of Love and You to Me Are Everything with Dingdong Dantes and Marian Rivera. In 2010, she would also appear in a beautiful Metro Manila Film Fest movie, entitled Rosario. The film would end up bagging 7 awards in the Manila Film Fest Awards Night.

With her career going well, Isabel has also now found the time to be in a romantic relationship and the man she’s currently dating is Gab Valenciano. Gab had admitted in an interview that they’ve been going steady for more than two months and has described this period as the most sincere and genuine relationship both have had.
No one could deny that Isabel Oli is one of the country’s most beautiful faces. With all the memorable acting roles she’s had these past couple of years, it’s interesting to look back and see how inevitable her success was even from the first moment she graced our television screens.

Melissa Ricks

September 27th, 2011

In an interview, Melissa Ricks mentioned how many of her batch mates in Star Circle Quest had already made big names for themselves. Names like Roxanne Guinoo and Joross Gamboa and, of course, Sandara Park who has already become an international celebrity would come to mind. And that is why she’s quite happy and feels that all the hard work she’s put in is now paying off. She has recently been cast as the title character in Nasaan Ka Elisa, after all, and based on all the hype and buzz that show has been receiving, Melissa’s star is about to shine even brighter.

Melissa was born on January 9, 1990 in the United States of America. Her mother is a Filipina while her father is an American. Melissa had always been interested in entertaining people and performing for a crowd and so her career now as an actress isn’t entirely unexpected. When they moved to the Philippines when she was still young, many were surprised by Melissa’s fluency in speaking Tagalog. But that particular feat was only made possible by Melissa’s desire to learn how to speak Tagalog even while they were still living in the United States. Melissa made sure to learn and regularly practice the language and thus was used to speaking it already by the time they moved here.

Star Circle was a name for the yearly batch of talent that ABS-CBN picks to promote and manage, showcasing them in TV shows and movies through Star Cinema. But in 2004, the reality talent show boom had made its way to Philippine shores and the network decided to launch a competition to find talents for Star Circle. Thus was born the Star Circle Quest contest in 2004. Melissa Ricks felt that it was a good opportunity and thus joined the contest. From thousands of teenaged Filipinos who wanted to be stars, the number was narrowed down to ten. Melissa would prove herself in the competition and though it would be Hero Angeles who would win first place, Melissa would still manage a place inside the top five.

As one of the top winners, she would appear in TV dramas such as in Maalaala Mo Kaya and appear regularly as a host and performer in many of the network’s variety shows such as in ASAP Fanatic. In 2006, she would appear in Channel 2’s weekly show Komiks Presents: Da Adventures of Pedro Penduko. It would also be at this time when she would be paired opposite the Pinoy Big Brother Teen housemate Matt Evans. The pairing would prove a popular one among audiences and the show weekly show would last for a total of 33 episodes.

The tandem with Matt would also be employed in many of the pair’s next projects including their appearances in the Princess Sarah TV series and in Iisa Pa Lamang as well as in three different Your Song storylines.

In 2009, Melissa would appear as Ella in the hit afternoon drama Kambal sa Uma. Here, her character played the role of one of a pair of twins who have been cursed to possess rodent qualities from birth. Matt Evans would be her leading man in the series as well. The show would receive positive reviews from critics and would have a total of 125 episodes.

A year later, the pair would again appear in Tanging Yaman as the spoiled niece of the President of the Philippines. The show would also be highly-regarded as it combines traditional romance and drama with highly-charged political drama.

The Chilean drama Donde Esta Elisa becomes a hit in its own home country as well as gets a Spanish remake is turned into Nasaan Ka Elisa by ABS-CBN and now stars Melissa Ricks. Here, Elisa, played by Melissa Ricks is portrayed as a wealthy, beautiful, perfect daughter who has more than a few skeletons in her closet. The show features intrigue, drama, mystery and a whodunit premise which is new to Philippine television audiences.

After working hard for years as an actress trying to perfect her craft, Melissa sees Nasaan Ka Elisa as the next step in her career. And to many of her fans, being given this opportunity is something that she really deserves.  And it just might be what catapults this beautiful, talented and sexy actress to even greater heights of stardom.

Lovi Poe

September 26th, 2011

As the daughter of the biggest and most well-loved actor in Philippine cinema history, the late great Fernando Poe Jr., Lovi Poe certainly has big shoes to fill. But as a star who many consider today as one of the most beautiful young actresses onscreen today, she’s on the way to making a big name for herself as well.

Her screen name, Lovi comes from her given name Lourdes Virginia Moran Poe. Her mother is Rowena Moran, a formel model and co-star of Fernando Poe Jr. in the movie Kapag Puno na ang Salop in 1987. Lovi was born to the two on February 11, 1989 in St. Luke’s Hospital in Quezon City.

It’s said that talent is hereditary and from an early age, acting must have been always in the cards for Lovi. Her father, after all, is the King of Philippine movies and her grandfather, Fernando Poe Sr. was one of the biggest and highest paid actors of his time as well. When it comes to show business, though, singing was where Lovi first showed interest and talent in. In school, she had joined choirs and regularly performed on stage. In 2007 back when she was still only 15, she was chosen by international duo Same Same of Moffats fame to perform a duet with them for a track in their international album.

According to Lovi, her mother was against the idea of her joining show business and instead wanted a simple life for her away from the public eye. But it seems that Lovi always knew what she wanted to do and eventually managed to convince her mother to let her join showbusiness, first as a singer and then as a full-fledged actress.

Her first appearance on a TV show was in 2006 when she appeared in the GMA-7 show Love to Love, a teen-oriented series where she was paired opposite young actor Cogie Domingo. She would appear in other GMA shows like Maynila and Baywalk but her role in the series Bakekang that same year in a supporting role would be instrumental in getting her noticed by the public. The title role of Bakekang, a woman born with an unpleasant face was played by Sunshine Dizon. Lovi played the role of Kristal, Bakekang’s beautiful daughter, a girl who was doted on by her mother and who becomes a way for her mother to gain acceptance vicariously.

As the years passed, Lovi would continue to act on TV for the GMA network. She would also release a music album in 2006 entitled The Best of My Heart. She would accomplish all these the while continuing her studies as was the desire of her mother. In college, she would take up Psychology in Ateneo de Manila University. Some of her hit GMA shows would include Zaido from 2007 and Lalola in 2009. She wouldn’t be limited to doing dramas, though, as she would also be cast in 2009’s Show Me Da Manny alongside the national celebrity boxer and soon to be Congressman Manny Pacquiao.

Just like her father, she would also venture into acting for the big screen with Regal Film starrers like 2007’s Shake, Rattle and Roll 9 and 2010’s White House. Her career would continue to thrive until 2011 when she practically becomes a household name with the hit camp movie Temptation Island. In this remake of a Joey Gosiengfiao 80s hit, she played one of the beauty pageant contestants along with other GMA stars Heart Evangelista, Solenn Heussaff and Marian Rivera.

Recently, Lovi Poe’s star has continued to gain more and more prominence as she is continually considered one of the sexiest female celebrities in the country. With greater stardom also came a greater maturity in the roles that she accepts. Her latest film is My Neighbor’s Wife which many consider her sexiest role so far alongside Carla Abellana and Jake Cuenca. At the moment, with Lovi also regularly appearing as a cover girl in many magazines and her career red-hot, one can’t even begin to predict how high her star could rise. Which is only fitting as she is, after all, her father’s daughter.

Carmen Soo

September 26th, 2011

The Philippines has had a long history of falling in love with beautiful female celebrities from other countries who visit us and wind up staying or coming back often due to the country’s hospitality. Examples would be Dayanara Torres and Michelle Van Aimeren who ended up having their own successful showbusiness careers here in the country. More recently, Carmen Soo is another one of these talented women who has found admiration from her many fans in the Philippines.

Carmen Soo or Carmen Soo Wai Mun is a Malaysian who is also of Chinese descent. She was born on October 14, 1977 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She started modeling in her home country early on back when she was only 17 when she won in a local modeling contest. At the young age of twenty, she already began to be known as an international model. During that time, she was based in competitive Hong Kong but she also traveled all over Asia as a model for TV and print ads. To many Asian fans, She became the face representing many regional brands such as Pantene and Ponds.

Later on, she ventured into the acting field beginning with a role in a Jackie Chan movie by the name of Gorgeous. In that shoot, Carmen had the experience of working with other notable Asian celebrities like Shu Qi.

Juggling her modeling, TV roles and stage acting, she was next invited by ABS-CBN to appear in one of its TV dramas opposite popular Filipino actor Jericho Rosales. The 2008 series Kahit Isang Saglit was a Philippines-Malaysia co-production and starred other notable Filipino actors such as Cristopher de Leon, Albert Martinez and sexy actress Cristine Reyes. The series was later shown in other Asian countries and garnered a nomination for ABS-CBN in the International Emmy Awards in 2009.

Instantly, Carmen Soo became a sensation in the Philippines, guesting in noontime talkshows and even appearing in the local version of Deal or No deal hosted by Kris Aquino. Speculations were also rampant about the possibility that Jericho and Carmen had established a real life romantic relationship brought about by their experience on set. Years later, Jericho Rosales would clarify in an interview that their relationship had been purely professionals as actors.

ABS-CBN also made sure to sign her up with the Star Magic talent management brand in April of 2009. Carmen remarked that the experience of working in Kahit Isang Saglit had brought her closer to the Philippines and gave her additional opportunities for new projects such as work in other Philippine soap operas. She was also taking more Tagalog lessons during this time with a language coach who taught her four to five times each week.

After signing up for Star Magic, the beautiful actress’ next project with Star Cinema was in Tenement 2 which was a horror movie. Here, she got a chance to work with legendary icon Maricel Soriano. The movie contained fantasy elements and in it, Carmen played the role of a fairy intent on taking back her daughter who was raised as a human child.

She has continued to get hosting and acting work whenever she is in the Philippines such as in 2010’s role as a guest judge in popular talent contest Showtime. At one point, she was also a semi-regular co-host in the now defunct ABS-CBN show Wowowee with Willie Revillame. She has also been given the opportunity to work with local network TV5 in various shows such as Si Paco at ang Princesa alongside young actor JC De Vera. In 2011, she also appeared once more for TV5 in the show Luv Crazy Presents.

As she stated in an interview, it’s these kinds of opportunities that open up whenever she does international work that she truly relishes in her career. With the local Philippine dramas under her belt and as she continues to improve her talents in her various modeling and acting endeavors, Carmen Soo continues to exemplify what it means to be a true international artist.

Kris Bernal

September 26th, 2011

Many fans describe Kris Bernal as the ultimate girl next door, perky, sweet, simple and able to liven up any room. With her fresh-faced good looks and pleasing personality, it’s no wonder why this princess of daytime drama shows has continued to gain fans ever since she first hit the scene in 2007.

Kristine Ann Tan Bernal or simply Kris Bernal was born on May 17, 1989 and began her showbusiness career through GMA-7’s hit reality talent show StarStruck. When asked what prompted her to enter showbusiness, she mentions that it’s always been her dream and it’s also a great way to help out her family. As the reality show ended, she won the award for ultimate love team along with her StarStruck batchmate Mart Escudero.

Mart and Kris would actually be paired with each other after the reality show in the GMA superhero series Zaido. However, it seemed that even early on, fellow StarStruck contestant Aljur Abrenica would be the actor whose pairing with the pretty actress would register as a hit to many. Her character figured into a love triangle with the two other actors’ roles and ultimately, it would be the tandem with Aljur that would win out.

In her next series, Dyesebel, which was a remake of the hit movie and comics series by Philippine comics great Mars Ravelo, Kris Bernal would once more be paired with Aljur in supporting roles.

Many fans describe Kris Bernal as the ultimate girl next door, perky, sweet, simple and able to liven up any room. With her fresh-faced good looks and pleasing personality, it’s no wonder why this princess of daytime drama shows has continued to gain fans ever since she first hit the scene in 2007.

Kristine Ann Tan Bernal or simply Kris Bernal was born on May 17, 1989 and began her showbusiness career through GMA-7’s hit reality talent show StarStruck. When asked what prompted her to enter showbusiness, she mentions that it’s always been her dream and it’s also a great way to help out her family. As the reality show ended, she won the award for ultimate love team along with her StarStruck batch mate Mart Escudero.

Mart and Kris would actually be paired with each other after the reality show in the GMA superhero series Zaido. However, it seemed that even early on, fellow StarStruck contestant Aljur Abrenica would be the actor whose pairing with the pretty actress would register as a hit to many. Her character figured into a love triangle with the two other actors’ roles and ultimately, it would be the tandem with Aljur that would win out.

In her next series, Dyesebel, which was a 2008 remake of the hit movie and comics series by Philippine comics great Mars Ravelo, Kris Bernal would once more be paired with Aljur in supporting roles. The series was a hit with Filipino audiences as it also showcased Marian Rivera who was quickly making her name at that point.
Aljur and Kris would also work together in their next series, Luna Mystika where they also play supporting roles. More of Kris’ acting chops are showcased as she plays the role of Malou, a tomboyish girl who figures in a romance with Aljur who played the supernatural role of a mythical tikbalang.

2009’s All My Life had the two actors in lead roles as they played Jules and Romina, childhood friends who grow up estranged but who soon find a reason to fall in love. In an interview, Kris expressed a lot of gratitude towards her home network upon being given the chance to head a primetime TV series of their own.
But their network clearly saw the success of their tandem and in January of the very next year, the pair were once more given another primetime series. The Last Prince was their foray into headlining a romantic fantasy series with the fanciful conceit of interweaving elements of popular fairy tales such as Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast into its plot. The two would also be joined by the beautiful Bianca King who was the main antagonist in the story. The program would end up running for 118 episodes—longer than the pair’s previous shows All My Life and Luna Mystika.

However, it soon came time for the Aljur and Kris tandem to end and for the two actors to move on to other projects. Kris recalls that after their show The Last Prince, management had explained to them that new shows had been lined up for each of them. When she heard the news, she couldn’t help but tear up as the two had worked with each other for three years already.

But the change soon proved a fruitful one as her next TV work would earn her the moniker Princess of Daytime Drama. With her new show Koreana which premiered on October of 2010, her acting talent and capability to carry a show without her partner Aljur came into the forefront. Many fans were pleased with her performance and the nuanced character of a Filipina-Korean which she portrayed.

After Koreana, Kris has proven to TV audiences that she could carry both primetime and daytime acting work which is why Kris’ next two projects are Machete, once more with Aljur and Time of my Life which would be with a new partner, Mark Herras. This just goes to prove that this sweet, charming Princess of Daytime Drama is a princess of primetime as well.


Jewel Mische

September 26th, 2011

Jewel Mische was born Jewel Fatima Avejade Mische; her mother is a Filipina and her father is of a German-Spanish-American lineage. It was in 2007, on the GMA TV talent show StarStruck’s fourth season where Jewel Mische first came to national attention. Here, after competing with 19 other young hopefuls, she managed to bag the award for “Ultimate Sweetheart”. Since then, she has continued to act, model and host, continually proving herself a true jewel among today’s batch of younger celebrities.

As a launch pad for Jewel, StarStruck Season Four would ultimately be a proving ground for many of today’s prominent and up-and-coming stars such as Aljur Abrenica, Mart Escudero and Kris Bernal. All of the contestants were not only vying for a place in the finals but also trying to prove themselves as potential stars of GMA-7’s shows. However, there was no denying that Jewel was early on one of the favorites in the competition, leaving many fans to comment that she might have been the best find in the history of the competition. Because of the reality show’s format with the other contestants able to influence who gets to stay in the competition, Jewel was placed in a precarious position several times. However, with the TV audience’s support, she eventually managed to become the” ultimate sweetheart” winning a million Pesos and a management contract with the network.

She was part of Sunday Variety show SOP the same year she won in StarStruck. The network felt that she was ready to appear in its shows as she was cast in Fantastic Man and Mga Mata ni Anghelita. More prominent roles that same year included Sunday afternoon show Magic Kamison with five episodes entitled Black Jewel in the Palace, the title being inspired by Jewel’s name.

Another big role was in Kamandag, a fantasy and superhero series also starring GMA-7 powerhouse Richard Gutierrez and Mark Anthony Fernandez. Here, Jewel played the role of Jenny, who becomes the woman the Richard and Mark’s characters fall for and eventually fight over. The series was regarded highly by critics and also did well when it came to its ratings. In fact, the series came close to getting as many viewers as GMA’s biggest hit that season, Marimar. She would continue to appear in more shows in GMA-7 including 2009’s Dear Friend: Magkaribal where she appeared for four episodes.

Jewel reached another monumental point in her career in late 2010 when her contract with the Kapamilya Network ended and she opted to sign with ABS-CBN instead. In Philippine showbusiness, moving from one network to another can sometimes be frowned upon by TV fans.  However, Jewel defended her move to fans by saying that it was supported by the people she worked with in the previous network. She also felt that it was time for her to give her career a brand new start and moving to another station would be the best way to support that aim.

According to reports, the first professional experience that she had once she was already in ABS-CBN’s fence was to attend extensive acting workshops in order to prepare her for her new duties.

There has, however, been some controversy upon her move to ABS-CBN and the station’s choice to pair her with its popular star Gerald Anderson in the show Buhawi Jack. That period had recently marked the end to Gerald and Kim Chiu’s last tandem in a TV series and fans of the two former Pinoy Big Brother teen housemates felt that Jewel wasn’t worthy of being one to replace Kim Chiu. Kim Chiu herself, though, has gone on record to ask her fans to give Jewel a chance to be paired with Gerald. But aside from that one glitch, the move to ABS-CBN seems to be an auspicious one as Jewel quickly appeared in several other shows for the station. Her newest work is in the hit show 100 Days to Heaven where she plays a pivotal role. With her career revitalized and going strong, where Jewel Mische goes from here is all up to her. To many of her biggest fans, though, particularly those who have fallen in love with her throughout these last several years, Jewel Mische is always going to be their ultimate sweetheart.

Sam Concepcion

September 24th, 2011

With his squeaky-clean image and enormous amounts of talent in singing, dancing, hosting and acting, Sam Concepcion has been steadily making a name for himself as a positive role model for our Filipino youth. Samuel Lawrence Lopez Concepcion was born on October 17, 1992 to his parents Raymund and Gene Concepcion. His parents noticed that even when he was very young, he already displayed a lot of talent when it came to music. He was able to sing really well as early as when he was a two-year-old and even accompanied his singing with dancing.

It seems that love for performing manifested early on as his interest in music developed steadily until he was five and performed in his first worship cantata. Seeing how he enjoys being in front of an audience, his parents then allowed him to join Trumpets Playshop to give him more experience on stage. Under Trumpets, he performed in several musical plays including its popular run of musical The Lion, the Witch and The Wardrobe based on the popular novel of CS Lewis. Sam had also appeared in TV commercials including one for Maggi where the precious young performer exhibited talent in rapping as well.

In 2005, with ABS-CBN’s Little Big Star came added exposure as he became one of the leading contenders very early on. He also showed his ability to charm a great portion of the TV audience whose job it was to vote for winners in the competition. In the show, he also had the experience of competing with Charice Pempengco. In fact, that competition could be seen as what brought Charice. In fact, that competition could be seen as what brought Charice Pempengco to worldwide stardom when video of one of her performances was uploaded to Youtube. However, it would ultimately be Sam who ends up winning that TV competition with his final piece, a rendition of I Can’t Stand Still from the musical Footloose.

He would then be given more TV roles in ABS-CBN’s shows such as in 2006’s hit superhero show Super Inggo. Here, he played Boy Bawang, the slightly older superhero who Makisig Morales’ character Super Inggo idolizes. Sam also began performing in ASAP regularly during this period as part of the group Three-O.
A year later, he would be part of another series, this time as Noel in the prologue of the show Walang Kapalit. His character Noel would later on grow up to be played by Piolo Pascual.

Though Sam had become very busy with all the TV hosting and acting duties, the call of the stage was still something that Sam could ignore and so he became part of another stage production, High School Musical which was based on the hit franchise from the Disney Channel. Shortly after, Sam would launch his own music album simply entitled Sam Concepcion which came out under Universal Records.

He would continue to endorse many local products and business establishments and sometimes would be tasked to perform for international projects as well. In 2008, he sang the song Kung Fu Fighting which was included as a single in Kung Fu Panda’s Asian Soundtrack release.

With his role as good model for the youth, the Philippines’ Department of Education chose Sam to be its Ambassador for Education. His role as Ambassador was to tour the country and give talks and inspire all the Filipino children to stay in school and value education in order to create a good future for themselves. In interviews, Sam mentioned how this and his other experiences seeing the youth of the Philippines has exposed him much to what majority of the Filipino youth go through. A similar role was also given to Sam Concepcion by World Vision the following year as he became their Ambassador for Children. With his talent, popularity and wisdom beyond his years, it’s easy to see why many government and International organizations have considered Sam a great role model for kids.

Jessy Mendiola

September 23rd, 2011

With the series Budoy about to replace the recently ended ABS-CBN show Guns and Roses in its coveted primetime timeslot, the Internet is once again abuzz as netizens try to find more information about it. One of the names frequently being mentioned belongs to Jessy Mendiola, the lead actress who will play the love interest of both Gerald Anderson and Enrique Gil’s characters in the series. And if sources are indeed correct, this show just might make Jessy Mendiola the next big name in local showbusiness.

Jessy Mendiola was born Jessica Mendiola Tawile on December 3, 1992 in the United Arab Emirates. Her father is British-Lebanese and her mother is a Filipina. In 1996 when Jessy was only three years of age, her mother brought her and her older sister with her to the Philippines where Jessy has lived ever since.

Jessy joined the illustrious Star Magic Circle on its 15th batch in 2007. She appeared in ABS-CBN shows Star Magic Presents: Abt Ur Luv Ur Lyf 2 and Sineserye Presents: Natutulog Ba Ang Diyos in supporting roles that year. In 2008, she was cast in the hit Superhero comedy series Volta.

After appearing in several other ABS-CBN TV shows, she finally got her breakout role in 2010’s afternoon series Sabel wherein she played the titular character. The show was based on the 1980s classic movie Bata Pa Si Sabel with the Sabel role then being played by industry icon Snooky Serna. In this remake, Jessy Mendiola worked with fellow newcomers AJ Perez and Joseph Marco.

The role Jessy had in the show required her to take on a more sexy persona and many fans also considered the show as something similar to the earlier ABS-CBN series Katorse which made Erich Gonzales a household name with her sexy role in the series. Jessy indeed became more well known due to this role and more fans began to notice the young actress. Jessy Mendiola had finally started to reach the heights of celebrity as she became the dream girl to many Filipino showbiz fans.

Nearly a year later comes another big role for Jessy, this time with the new series Budoy. Prior to this show appearing on the air, Jessy had stated in an interview how she was actually pleased that she wasn’t in anyway typecast into taking only sexy roles. Though her previous hit Sabel was a more mature role, this time Budoy would be a different kind of challenge for her. This is because of Budoy’s subject matter. Her co-star in the series, Gerald Anderson, is going to be playing a man in his early adulthood who was born with Angelman syndrome, thus his mental and social skills have developed at a decreased rate compared to others. Jessy Mendiola would be playing Jackie who becomes the object of Budoy’s affections in the series.

With Jessy all set to take her next step to greater fame, some criticism has been leveled her way. The reason for said criticism is actually due to fans of Gerald Anderson not wanting him to appear with another actress as his leading lady. Instead, it’s Kim Chiu of the famous “Kimerald” tandem who they think is more worthy of being cast opposite Gerald. This has caused some of their fans to bash Jessy in online forums and in Twitter. However, not one to be disheartened, Jessy simply hopes to have her work speak for itself in order to change these fans’ minds.

At this point, there are still many more steps for young Jessy Mendiola to take before she can become a truly successful actress in the local TV and film industry. However, if one were to base predictions on the number of male celebrities who have found it easy to openly declare Jessy their celebrity crush and all the buzz that’s slowly but surely getting generated by her name, one can predict that she’s surely on her way towards bigger and better things.