Will a Cebuana win Tv5's "Star Factor"?
PEN POINT - Ryan Mark () - December 4, 2010 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Two Cebuanas are going for the big win as TV5's reality artista search, Star Power, is coming to a grand end tomorrow. Actually, I haven't seen a single episode of the show hosted by Ruffa Gutierrez, but based on feedback, I have learned that our very own Morissette Amon and Eula Caballero have great chances of snatching the top prize.

I'm not very familiar with Eula, but an OkRyanian (listener of my radio program OkRyan on dyRC 648khz), revealed that this pretty artista hopeful hails from Brgy. El Pardo in Boljoon, Cebu. During the final auditions at Marriott Hotel months ago, I was amazed at her strong presence, making her a shoo-in already for the title. After becoming one of the 12 finalists, she underwent rigid workshops in acting, dancing, singing, hosting, and personality development.

Fortunately, I got the chance to interview Eula on the phone last Thursday through TV5’s Peachy Guioguio, and I was all the more amazed at her, especially at her level of maturity. When asked for her message to the viewers of Star Factor, she said: “I hope nga ang mga youth nga mutan-aw og Star Factor, dili lang mutan-aw namo as star hopefuls or star wannabes, but tan-awon sad mi nila as inspiration. Like ako, public school ra gud ko gikan and mura sag unsa ming datua. But I hope that they will realize that dili babag ang unsa man nga atong gigikanan. They have to dream big.”

She finished elementary at El Pardo Elementary School, and went on to study high school at St. Mary’s Academy in Dalaguete. Her family decided to move to Manila, but she opted to stay behind in Boljoon with the intention of finishing her high school studies in Cebu. But she felt lonely so she eventually joined her parents and three siblings in Manila. Eula, who is the youngest in a brood of four, said she has lived in Boljoon for a total of 13 years. Her family name is Simo, but the show’s staff advised her to carry her mother’s maiden name, probably for better recall.

Since she was a child, she already dreamed of becoming an actress. So when the opportunity to join the artista search came, she ditched her plans of becoming a public servant via the SK elections last October.  

“Bata pa ko ganahan na gyud ko mu-perform, passion lang gyud nako. Ever since sa among house sa una mag-atubang ko sa samin, magdrama-drama na ko, labi na inig mata nako inigka buntag before ko maligo,” she said.Our phone conversation gave me the idea that she can express herself well in English. But no wonder really as she was fond of participating in English festivals in school more than Science quizzes. In fact, when she was in grade 6, she was adjudged Best in Reading with Comprehension. She also enjoys declamation, oration and public speaking.

Mention Boljoon, and what comes to her mind right away is the town’s Baywalk. “Emotional man gud ko nga pagkatawo, dali ra ko ma-affected. In touch kaayo ko sa akong emotions. So sa Baywalk ko sa una mag-acting-acting,” shared Eula.

She also revealed that she is religious and has been leading the Holy Rosary at home since she was 11. When she prays, she follows the A.C.T.S.: “A for adoration, C for contrition, T for thanksgiving, and S for supplication,” she explained.For tomorrow's Grand Finals, she picked the only male in the Final Four, Christian of Bulacan, as her biggest contender for the title. “Akong nabantayan man gud sa looks, talent, ug hatak sa mga tawo, naa niya. Nindot jud siya musayaw. Pero dili pagpanghambog ha, sa performance karong Sunday, I think murag naa ko'y edge niya kay 'lyrical' (interpretative dancing) man akoa.”

Acting, she said, is her forte, that is why she is doing her best to learn her dance numbers for the big day. “Naningkamot gyud ko. Kani laging dili ta kamao musayaw,” Eula confessed with a laugh.

Being one of the two Cebuanas wanting to bring pride for Cebu through this competition, Eula admitted that she is very close to Morisette. “Happy ra man mi for each other. Kung siya mao'y mudaog ma-happy ra ko, kung ako pud, ma-happy ra pud siya.”

Morisette, on the other hand, is dear to me. She even calls me kuya. This is because we've been together in mall shows in Cebu where she was the performer and I was the host. Her vocal range never fails to mesmerize shoppers.

A resident of Brgy. Mambaling, Morisette has joined a lot of singing contests in Cebu and had performed in various corporate shows. A morena beauty, Morisette is equipped with qualities that will make her truly shine in showbizlandia. I know she can act, but her dad was surprised to see her ace the hosting challenge they went through weeks ago. Thus, it's safe to say, Morisette has a lot of hidden talents. Plus, she is very respectful and soft-spoken in person. For that, I hope it’s going to be a dream come true for Morissette tomorrow at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

Meanwhile, in a phone interview with Sanden Anadia for Banat News Hugyaw days ago, Morisette expressed how happy she is to have made it this far in the contest.

“Nagpasalamat gyud ko og maayo nga nasulod ko sa Top 4,   salamat kaayo sa akong pamilya, mga friends nako, ug sa tanan mga taga-Cebu nga ni-support nako,” she said, adding that she never expected to be as lucky as she is now. “Hinaut nga sunod-sunod na gyud ang suwerte nga maabot sa akong kaugalingon. Ang importante nga duna gyud ta’y pagsalig sa atong self.”

Her mother, Analy, who accompanies her in Manila, is already contented with her daughter’s performance. “Kontento na ko nga nasulod sa Top 4 ang akong anak, bonus na lang kung mahimo nga grand winner si Morisette. Salamat kaayo sa tanang nisuporta sa akong anak.”

She further said that because of the contest, Morisette got the chance to realize she has so much potential, and that she just found a bigger stage where she could share her God-given talent. Morisette will certainly bank on her singing ability come Sunday, but I'm sure it's one thing that will surely bring her to the top someday.

A dead ringer for Pop Princess Sarah Geronimo, 14-year-old Morisette is a student of Asian College of Technology-Bulacao.

Morisette and Eula will face off with Christian Samson (Bulacan), and Ritz Alzul (Pampanga). But whoever will win tomorrow, it doesn't change the fact that Cebu has made history with two top contenders in a reality contest. This will only prove how talented and bankable we are in the field of performing arts. Therefore, let's be proud, Cebu.

React@ banatentertainment@hotmail.com (FREEMAN)

ASIAN COLLEGE OF TECHNOLOGY-BULACAO BOLJOON CEBU EULA MORISETTE STAR FACTOR
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