Grand Touristar Yohan Hwang loves OPM
KAPAMILYA DAY - Kane Errol Choa (The Philippine Star) - April 29, 2016 - 10:00am

Korean student Yohan Hwang did not expect that a single performance would change his life forever.

A friend recommended him to perform a Filipino song at a function in La Salle Antipolo. He gamely agreed and performed before a big crowd, singing Side A’s hit Ako’y Sayo.

“They were all cheering for me and I was so overwhelmed. I can’t explain the feeling,” he recounted.

From then on, Yohan knew in his heart that he really wants to sing and make music for the rest of his life.

“It’s a great experience. It gave me a vision, a dream,” said Yohan, the first Grand Touristar of ABS-CBN’s original singing competition for 100-percent non-Pinoy, who loves OPM music, I Love OPM. 

“I couldn’t believe it for a few days, but I believe now that I am the winner. I am super happy and very excited,” he shared.

In the grand showdown, Yohan edged out his competitions Ryan Gallagher of U.S.A., Dio Smith of Pakistan and J-Morning of Korea with his powerful rendition of Huwag Ka Nang Umiyak as sung by Gary Valenciano for the primetime series FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano.

It was the first time that Yohan showed his vocal range and gave a mature and sincere performance following his usual charming pa-cute numbers.

“He did such an amazing job and I think he really proved himself. His purpose was to show everyone that he can really sing and that he is not just there to bring kilig to the audience. It radiated well in his heartfelt performance and I think that made him the Grand Touristar,” said I Love OPM host Anne Curtis.

When asked what prompted him to make that bold decision of singing a powerful ballad, Yohan said, “Many people said that I don’t deserve to be a winner so I want to show them that I am serious with my singing.”

It may come as a surprise to many, but hitting the high notes isn’t really new to Yohan since his vocal trainings include operatic singing.

Now that his musical career is about to begin, what can his supporters expect from his album?

“I want to do more love ballads. It could be in Tagalog, English or maybe even Korean.”

Aside from singing, Yohan is also eyeing an acting career. He said, “I want to act and I want to have my own drama or movie.”

There was even a point in his life that he literally asked for it.

“One day, the series All of Me was taping near our house so I went there and asked a staff ‘Where is the director?’ So the staff accompanied me, I went inside his tent and said ‘I want to be an artista.’ And he was like ‘Oh really.’ Then it’s done. I went out,” Yohan embarrassingly shared.

Who does he want to be paired with in a movie or TV series? “I want to be paired with Anne Curtis and our loveteam will be called YoAnne.”

While he is bent on pursuing a career in show business, Yohan still wants to finish his studies and learn how to speak Tagalog fluently.

Watch Yohan reunite with his fellow Touristars tomorrow, April 30, in I Love OPM: The Kababayan Playlist after MMK on ABS-CBN.

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