MANILA – Charice continues to make waves in the international music scene and inevitably, she is now being regarded as one who brings world-class honor to our country.
Recently, she also appeared in the Hollywood flick “Alvin and the Chipmunks 2: The Squeakquel,” where she appeared as herself and sang Alicia Keys’ “No One” in the official film soundtrack.
This February, it will be the turn of thousands of Pinoy fans to watch her up close and personal when she performs at a Valentine’s Day concert on Feb. 14 at the Plenary Hall of the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC).
In “Charice in Concert! by Ryan Cayabyab” to be produced by Xclusive Hits & Events, Inc., the young diva will lead a powerhouse ensemble composed of Erik Santos, George Yang and the RCS (Ryan Cayabyab Singers), with the special participation of Ogie Alcasid.
To be directed by Ryan Cayabyab, the concert will feature the 17-year-old singing wonder as she performs a repertoire of pop, R&B and soul hits popularized by Whitney Houston, Celine Dion and Mariah Carey, among many others.
Charice has indeed come a long way. Remember she was only seven when she started doing the rounds of amateur singing competitions. She gained worldwide attention in 2007 after videos of her live performances were posted on the YouTube and caught the attention of Ellen DeGeneres, who invited her to appear in the Dec. 19, 2007 episode of her show. Charice became an instant hit with her performance of “I Will Always Love You” and “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going.”
Five months later, she appeared in the May 12, 2008 edition of “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” where her performance of Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing” greatly impressed Oprah that she subsequently recommended Charice to be under the wings of music producer David Foster.
She performed with Foster for the first time during the May 17 opening of MGM Grand at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Ledyard, Connecticut, followed by her debut on the international concert stage in Foster’s May 23 tribute concert, “Hitman: David Foster and Friends,” at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
Charice also went on to perform with Andrea Bocelli during his birthday concert on July 22, 2008 in his hometown of Lajatico, Tuscany, Italy, where, aside from her solo numbers, she also did a duet of “The Prayer” with the famous tenor in front of more than 8,000 people.
She also sang a duet of “Because You Loved Me” with Celine Dion on Sept. 15, 2008 at the Madison Square Garden in New York City, which earned rave reviews in The New York Post and The New York Times. The performance was eventually featured on the Sept. 19, 2008 episode of “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” She made her second appearance on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” on Sept. 9, 2008, during which the celebrated host described her as “the most talented girl in the world” after hearing her perform Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” with Foster on the piano.
During her most recent appearance on the same program, Charice elicited the ultimate tribute from Oprah: “You are a force to be reckoned with. That voice comes from something bigger than yourself. You’re pulling it up out of some place deeper than your little body.”
The singer’s outstanding vocal quality likewise prompted a chorus of praises from other musical and entertainment celebrities, such as David Foster and Josh Groban. She also received a compliment from The New York Post, which once called her a vocal prodigy for being able to sing “big songs” even in her tender age.
As 2009 was about to end, the singer added another feather to her cap when she topped an online poll by the Oprah Winfrey show, beating seven international singing superstars: Whitney Houston, James Taylor, Michael Bublé, Rascal Flatts, Jennifer Hudson, Journey and Black Eyed Peas.
Charice emerged as the winner of the “Best Oprah Show Musical Performance” award after receiving 70 percent of total votes for her performance of “Note To God,” her debut international single launched on the show last May 18.
Her Valentine show brings her back to the local concert scene eight months after her first major solo concert last June 27 at the SMX Convention Center at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City. Tickets to “Charice In Concert! by Ryan Cayabyab” are available at Ticketnet outlets located at all SM Department Stores (customer service area) and at the Araneta Coliseum ticket booths. Tickets are also available at Xclusive Hits & Events, Inc.
New York Post, 9/17/2008 Celine There, Dion That, by Dan Aquilante
One of the most interesting turns in this show was the MSG debut of 16-year-old vocal prodigy Charice Pempengco, whose manager, Oprah Winfrey – that’s right – secured the Philippine singer a duet with Celine for the song “Because You Loved Me.” The Charice segment was the night’s brightest moment. The teen was able to blast notes with Celine-like power, but she was also able to get in touch with the song’s emotions.
New York Times Review, 9/16/2008 Celine Dion: Emotions With Exclamation Points, by Jon Caramanica
[Celine] brought Charice Pempengco, a young singer from the Philippines with an impressive voice, onstage… They performed “Because You Loved Me,” though Ms. Dion mostly stayed out of the way as Ms. Pempengco explored the song’s heretofore unheard rougher edges, with ample gesticulations and melisma. As Ms. Pempengco brought the crowd to its feet, Ms. Dion struck poses behind her: awestruck wonder, heartfelt empathy, ambient triumph.
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