Dingdong marks ‘sweet 16’
FUNFARE - Ricky Lo () - April 29, 2003 - 12:00am
His wife, Jessa Zaragoza, will give birth to their first child first week of June yet but Dingdong Avanzado is celebrating two weeks ahead – in a way – with a concert on May 24 at the Music Museum marking his 16th anniversary in showbiz.

"I am excited to be a father," said Dingdong, 34, who’s actually experiencing fatherhood for the second time (he has a love child with a non-showbiz girl). The first time was more vicarious than, yes, "actual" because he didn’t have any direct hand in caring for the child. "This time," added Dingdong, "I’ll be there with Jessa to feed the baby, put the baby to sleep and change the diapers."

The couple is naming the baby (a girl, according to the ultrasound) Jayda, short for Janelle Amanda. Dingdong and Jessa decided to add "y" to the nickname so that people will pronounce it correctly – as in JD, the initials of Jessa and Dingdong.

Since it’s Dingdong’s 16th anniversary in showbiz (not counting his stint as member of the Kundirana in La Salle, the same group to which the likes of Gary Valenciano and Randy Santiago also once belonged), Funfare asked him to list the 16 milestones in his career.

Here they are:

His first TV guesting on Penthouse Live (1987) where he sang Trapped in a Stairway

His first concert abroad, entitled All In One (1987), with Raymond Lauchengco and Dawn Zulueta

His first major show entitled Shine On (1987) at the Rizal Theater in Makati, with no less than Sharon Cuneta as special guest.

His selection as Aliw Awards’ Most Promising Entertainer of the Year (1988)

The release of his first album, Tatlong Beinte Singko (1988), which was a "double platinum."

His first composition, Maghihintay Sa’yo (1988), which was a hit (Dingdong wouldn’t say who he wrote the song for – "Confidential," he smiled)

His first major concert at the Folk Arts Theater, entitled Full Blast (1988)

His Awit Award for Paalam Na (co-written with ex-girlfriend Rachel Alejandro) as Song of the Year (1995)

His concert Decade After (1997) which marked his graduation from a teeny-bopper to a "seasoned artist"

When he was elected councilor of Quezon City (Third District), in 1998

His concert Just Can’t Stop (1989, with a repeat in 1990) at the old ULTRA

His first movie, Viva Films’ Pic, Pac, Boom (with, among others, Lea Salonga as co-star; although 3 Times a Day, with former girlfriend Cheenee de Leon, was shown ahead)

Estudyante Blues, directed by Mike Relon Makiling, where he played one of the lead roles

When he married Jessa Zaragoza in March, 2000

When he put up the Dingdong Avanzado Celebrity Golf Classic in Guam last year (which was, sob and sigh, spoiled by a typhoon, forcing his star-guests to enjoy themselves at an indoor party)

Of course, the birth of Jayda in June

(Note: Directed by Louie Ignacio, Dingdong’s Hightime concert at the Music Museum on May 24 will retrace his career in songs. For ticket inquiries, call 891-5610, 721-0635, 374-1361 or 0917-4532427. Show sponsors are San Miguel Beer, B.U.M Equipment, Yes FM 101.1, MTV, Weighless Center, Star Records, George Bantolino of Salon de Orient, Lutong Macau and Manila Bulletin.)
Feast day of St. Peregrine
Bro. Pershing Golez, lay worker of the St. Peregrine Healing Ministry, Muntinlupa City, is reminding devotees (and those suffering from cancer, St. Peregrine being the Patron of cancer victims) that the feast day of St. Peregrine Laziosi will be celebrated on Sunday, May 4.

Here’s the schedule of activities:

• May 1, Thursday – Healing Mass at 2:30 p.m. and Triduum Mass in honor of St. Peregrine

• May 2, Friday – Triduum Mass in honor of St. Peregrine at 6:30 p.m.

• May 3, Saturday – Triduum Mass in honor of St. Peregrine at 7 p.m.

• May 4, Sunday – Sunday Mass at 6 a.m.; Sunday Mass at 7 a.m.; Concelebrated Feast Day Mass and Confirmation to be presided by Most Rev. Msgr. Chito Bernardo, Vicar General Diocese of Parañaque City, 8:30 a.m.; Healing Mass at 2:30 p.m.; Sunday Mass at 4:30 p.m.; and Procession at 5 p.m.

For particulars, call Bro. Pershing Golez at 807-1914 or 0917-8281027.
SARS scare in Toronto
Before, artists were cancelling shows abroad citing terrorism as reason. Now, it’s the SARS scare.

Here’s a SARS-related report by Funfare’s Toronto-based "international correspondent" Ferdinand Lapuz:

The Toronto fans of Pops Fernandez, Ai-Ai delas Alas, Janno Gibbs and Aiza Seguerra are wondering if their highly-publicized concert on June 7 at the 8,000-capacity Molson Amphitheater will be pushed through. You see, there’s a SARS scare in Toronto.

According to Hollywood Reporter, several US acts are cancelling their performances in Toronto due to the SARS outbreak. But the production of the US version of the Japanese hit film Shall We Dance?, with Richard Gere as topbiller, will go on as planned. Because of the SARS epidemic and the travel advisory issued by the World Health Organization (WHO), the tourism industry in Toronto is hurting. However, contrary to some reports that most Canadians are quarantined in their homes (as per rumors in the US), we are living normally. In fact, in the City of Mississauga (a suburb of Toron
to where Ariel Rivera and Michelle Bayle come from), I haven’t seen a single person wearing a mask yet.

Meanwhile, here’s another news report also from Hollywood Reporter (April 26, 2003):

TORONTO – Billy Joel and Elton John as well as American Idol alumnus Kelly Clarkson have cancelled their visits to this city in the wake of the SARS outbreak. Joel and John were due to perform Monday at Toronto’s Air Canada Center. Clarkson, meanwhile, was also scheduled to appear Monday on Canada AM, The Mike Bullard Show and MuchMusic’s Much On Demand. SARS has also prompted a shift in the shooting locale to Vancouver, British Columbia, from Toronto for Neil Simon’s TNT telefilm The Goodbye Girl and the cancellation of appearances by music acts Styx, Lisa Marie Presley and the Notwist.

Oh, my! Let’s hope and pray that SARS will be eradicated soon.

(E-mail reactions at rickylo@philstar.net.ph)

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