Show criticized for preferring singing talents
MANILA, Philippines - YouTube sensation Roel Manlangit, now champion of reality show Pilipinas Got Talent (Season 4), rose to Twitter's trending chart Monday morning as fans alternately lauded and criticized his victory in the popular talent competition Sunday night.
The 13-year-old Bukidnon native walked home with the coveted title and P2 million cash prize, beating more mature contestants including metal ring dancer Frandenal Fabroa, acapella and acoustic group MP3 band, black light dance group Zilent Overload, drift drivers Lateral Drift Productions and dance ensemble D' Intensity Breakers.
Viewers credited him for his exceptional vocal abilities, while fans of his rivals aired out their opinions.
Manlangit, who came from a humble background, admitted during a television interview before the finale that it was his young age that catapulted him to the championship.
The number of votes via text messages determined the winner, akin to the format adapted by popular singing competition American Idol in the United States.
Alongside Manlangit's trend in social networks, meanwhile, is the topic "Pilipinas Got Singers" criticizing the show for exclusively having male singers as champions in the past four seasons.
While not disputing Manlangit's talent, some viewers vented their disappointment on Twitter, saying Got Talent or "PGT" producers should consider changing its name to "PGS."
Other fans, such as Angelo Asia, defended Manlangit's success as his singing skills deserve to have distinction in the highly viewed show.
British talent executive and television personality Simon Cowell conceived the Got Talent format, spun off in over 35 countries worldwide since 2006. The United States version is on its eighth Got Talent season this year.