September 2010 Issue (Philippines)
Can’t wait to get your Gleek on? We know you’re dying to know once again how Sue “C’s” it, or what gay animals Brittany is thinking about. Lucky for you , the creators of the Emmy-nominated series have been happily making the press rounds, even joining screaming fans at Comic Con in July. So while waiting for the new season to begin (Sept. 22, 9 p.m. on Jack TV, and 10 p.m. on ETC), satisfy your Glee cravings with OK!’s special preview!
The New Directions kids are going to the nationals. In the finale, McKinley High’s show choir will be gunning for first place at the nationals in New York.
Our very own Charice has a multi-episode arc! The 18-year old Filipina international pop star will play a “foreign exchange student whose killer vocals get Rachel (Lea Michele) contemplating murder,” according to reports. Rumor has it that her character will also catch the eye of one of the boys of New Directions.
Click image to enlarge (photos scanned by bbelj)
Lea’s Star Story: Lea was only 8 when she went to an open casting call for a musical and in two weeks, she was starring on Broadway. At 9, she played a young Cosette in a Broadway production of Les Miserables, and from then on she became a Broadway regular. When she was 15, she took a break from the Great White Way to star in the controversial play Spring Awakening. After six years of workshops, in 2006, a 20-year-old Lea debuted on Broadway Spring Awakening’s Wendla, a role that would define her career – until Glee’s Rachel came along in 2009, for which she was nominated for a lead actress Emmy.
Charice’s Star Story: In 2007, two years after losing at a local singing competition, Charice went viral. After seeing her on Youtube, Ellen DeGeneres invited Charice, then 15, to sing live on her talk show. Soon after, on May 12, 2008, Charice performed on The Oprah Winfrey Show, and since then the media mogul has been helping her conquer the world. Among the bigwigs Charice has performed with are David Foster, Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion. Charice also had a cameo role in Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel. And of course, there’s Glee.
July 2010 Issue (Philippines)
Charice Pempengco: World Class Wonder
On a Sunday night at the Hotel Intercontinental in Makati City, OK! waited for the arrival of Charice Pempengco. We were gently informed by her Warner Rep that the 18-year-old singing sensation might appear sleepy during the interview since she’s been out doing guestings since 8′ o’clock in the morning and had just finished a mini concert. So it was certainly a welcome surprise when the teen powerhouse bounced giddily into the room at exactly 9 pm, cheerfully greeting everyone and even breaking into a song as she sat down for the hair and makeup. “Ate, wag mo ko masyado ipapanosebleed ha [don't give me too much nosebleed ha],” she even quipped, referring to a typical nasal hemorrhaging caused by too much English – a Pinoy joke, if you may.
Much like her energy, it’s hard for most people to fathom where Charice’s powerful voice comes from. Standing at a petite 4 feet and 9 inches and giggly as a child, you’d think she’s just an innocent little girl naive of the ways of the world. On the contrary, this Laguna-born talent, who first rose to local fame via a reality talent show Little Big Star, has already been steadily conquering the world and making her name in the music scene as the Youtube sensation-turned-Oprah Winfrey musical prodigy and, possibly, the next Celine Dion.
In fact, just last May and coinciding with the celebration of her 18th birthday, she launched her first international album, Charice, which features the chart-topping “Pyramid” on the Oprah Winfrey Show. “I can’t believe this! It’s amazing,” she told her biggest and most famous supporter during the episode.
In this exclusive chat, Charice talks to us about working with R&B star Iyaz, her friendship with American Idol Alum David Archuleta, and living in airplanes.
Click image to enlarge
Note: Charice’s answers were translated to English
OK: Congratulations on your latest album and for being the first Asian artist to reach the Billboard charts!
Charice: Actually, the funny story about it was we were arguing [with my family and crew] – like it will reach the “Top 50 only, it’ll never be in the Top 20! [laughs].” We waited for days, really counting down. We were shocked when we received an email that the album hit No. 8 because we really didn’t expect it. They were also surprised because I’m the first Asian to land in the Top 10 of Billboard charts.
OK: How was it working with Iyaz for Pyramid?
Charice: Iyaz is really a funny person…I recorded the song one year ago, then he recorded his part a month later, then we just met two months after that. So when we first met, he came up to me first… He’s the one who initiated the collaboration, and I was a bit shy because I’m a fan. I mean, his song Replay is a hit here. Then after that we got more comfortable with each other. Iyaz is a sweet person, when I’m tired he will do things like massage me. He’s really nice.
OK: Do you sometimes feel like all of this is a dream? Do you ever have “pinch-me” moments?
Charice: Sometimes I compare myself to being in a fairy tale story. Because it’s only been three years that everything has happened to me, it’s all such a surprise.
OK: How would you describe your Hollywood experience so far?
Charice: [Smiles] Of course, it’s been good because it’s like the way they treat you, you feel very special. Because, first of all, I’m Filipino, a different race, so they want to show that you are really welcome to them. But sometimes they are the ones who learn from me, like with food – Sir David [Foster], I taught him how to eat Adobo [a Filipino dish] and he really liked it, it became his favorite [laughs]. And especially when there are shows, it’s not just the Filipinos who sing with me in my songs. Especially Pyramid, they really know the lyrics!
OK: Among all the famous people you’ve met, who’s the most special to you?
Charice: All of them are special to me – Ms Ellen Degeneres, Sir David Foster. But of all, I think perhaps Ms Oprah… because I wouldn’t have met Sir David or Ms Celine Dion if not for her. Here is the story behind Oprah: after my first guesting on her show, we were already on the plane and then two policemen came in looking for us. They called “Pempengco!” We didn’t speak, we were just straight-faced because we didn’t know what to do. Then when we went out… they said that Ms Oprah was looking for me. So we went back to Harpo [Oprah's production company]. That was the time when Ms Oprah told me “Don’t lose hope. I promise something big will happen.” And she fulfilled all of my dreams just like she said she would.
OK: Wow she even sent the police to get you!
Charice: [Laughs] She explained to me why, I was touched because she said she couldn’t sleep that night because all of her staff were singing my song. So when she woke up, she was looking for me. She asked her staff where I was, they said that I was about to go back to the Philippines. So then she said “Stop the plane”.
OK: We hear you’ve also been hanging out a lot with David Archuleta.
Charice: I feel sleepy [laughs]. David and I are friends. I just want to clear that up because it’s scary [laughs], because there were many issues coming out. I would describe David as a happy person. We have good vibes when we’re hanging out, you’ll never feel sad. He’s always singing, even when you talk to him he will reply singing also [laughs]. He’s very supportive… I also want to clear up the gay club issue, that he just went there to support me. David is just very supportive.
OK: Fans loved your cover of “Baby” by Justin Bieber. Any chance of collaborating with him in the near future?
Charice: Uhm [giggles]. Hoping!
OK: But you’ve met him, right? On Oprah?
Charice: Yes, he’s such a nice kid! A kid ah? He’s sixteen years old while I am eighteen – such a nice kid! [laughs]. We met his manager, and his manager met my manager, so maybe I’ m just gonna say it’s still under negotiation.
OK: Now that you’re 18, does your mom let you do what you want or are there still rules that you follow?
Charice: She’s not strict, I’m just the type of person who doesn’t go out of the hotel or house. I just want to surf the internet, I’m like that. And in case you ask about my love life [laughs], mommy is open about it, she’s okay about boys. But you know I feel like I’m still enjoying what I do, so I’m really not ready yet.
OK: How about school? Are you home schooled?
Charice: An online school at Southern New Hampshire University in Boston. I’m in my first year of college, studying for a B.A. Communications and I’m a scholar [laughs].
OK: What do you do during your down time?
OK: Oprah has referred to you as one of the most talented girls in the world. How do you handle the pressure – from your mentors, your supporters, your fans?
Charice: I just tell myself that I’m representing Philippines. It’s like it gives me more strength to continue because of course, you want to show them what Filipinos can do.
OK: After your involvement in Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, do you have any upcoming movie projects? Is becoming an actress on your “to do” list?
Charice: I told my agency that I’m open to acting projects. That I would like a role in horror films, to be the one who will scare people. I don’t want to be the one who will die. I just want to try the long role in movies or soap opera. I’ve auditioned for other movies so I’m waiting.
OK: How do you see yourself in 10 years?
Charice: I don’t want to think about it yet. All the things that have happened to me so far just came as a surprise, so I think I will just wait more for whatever may happen [laughs].
OK: What do you consider as the best thing in your life now?
Charice: All [laughs]. Of course what I’m doing now, my career. Although sometimes it’s tiring because we travel a lot to one place, then after a few hours we’ll fly somewhere else, then fly again. It’s like I live in the airplane. But once you get there to all those places, it’s worth it.
Charice’s Quirky “Lasts”:
Last time you were starstruck? With Justin Bieber
Last thing you ate? Adobo
Last thing you downloaded into your iPod? “Not Afraid” by Eminem
Last splurge? iPad
Last text you got? from Iyaz, he said “Take care, babe” [laughs]
Last movie you watched? Alvin and the Chipmunks
Last time you had a work-free day? Is there any? Actually, when I was in the States, Every Sunday. Except today. [laughs]
Last book you read? Twilight: Eclipse
Last time you cried? Earlier [during a TV interview]
Last boy you talked to? My brother, Carl
Posted and Translated by Capofret and Eve
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