Piolo & Donny back in ASAP... from SNL?
ASAP Natin ‘To hosts, top row, from left: Erik Santos, Gary Valenciano, Martin Nievera and Ogie Alcasid; and front row, also from left: Zsa Zsa Padilla, Regine Velasquez and Sarah Geronimo
STAR/ File

Piolo & Donny back in ASAP... from SNL?

FUNFARE - Ricky Lo (The Philippine Star) - January 23, 2021 - 12:00am

Last Monday, Funfare broke the scoop about the partnership of the Cignal-TV5 Kapatid Network and ABS-CBN Kapamilya Network. There was neither a denial nor a confirmation from both companies. Actually, there seems to be no need. As they say, action speaks louder than words.

Starting tomorrow, Jan. 24, the Kapamilya Sunday show ASAP Natin ‘To will take the TV5 timeslot left vacant by the Brightlight-produced Sunday Noontime Live (SNL) and there’s the rub, the big irony. ASAP was the show left by director Johnny “Mr. M” Manahan after he retired from ABS-CBN as head of Star Magic (replaced by Laurenti Dyogi) and moved to TV5 to direct SNL. Barely three months later, Mr. M’s old show is easing out his new show. It must hurt...a lot!

SNL was hosted by Piolo Pascual, Catriona Gray, Maja Salvador, Jake Ejercito and Donny Pangilinan. According to the rumor, Piolo politely asked the Kapamilya bosses to “temporarily” co-host SNL as a gesture of gratitude to Mr. M whom he looks up to as his mentor.

Sunday Noontime Live hosts (from left) Donny Pangilinan, Maja Salvador, Piolo Pascual, Catriona Gray and Jake Ejercito

Donny, on the other hand, agreed to do SNL for only eight episodes since, as a Kapamilya Forever, he is committed to do some Kapamilya projects. So, it’s certain that they can go back to ASAP anytime (check out tomorrow’s ASAP edition). That leaves Catriona and Maja “hanging on air (naiwan sa ere)” since their former home may not take them in (daw). Oh well, that’s how the showbiz cookie crumbles.

Here is the official TV5 official statement:

ASAP Natin ‘To, the Philippines’ longest running musical variety show, and FPJ: Da King, will now be seen on TV5 beginning this Sunday, 24 January 2021 at 12:00 noon.

Launched in 1995, ASAP Natin ‘To brings together the biggest and brightest performers to give viewers the best concert experience topbilled by Martin Nieverra, Zsa Zsa Padilla, Gary Valenciano, Sarah Geronimo, Erik Santos, Ogie Alcasid and Regine Velasquez-Alcasid.

Aside from ASAP Natin ‘To, TV5 will also begin to air FPJ: Da King, a movie block showcasing the films of the King of Philippine Movies Fernando Poe Jr. Fans of the Filipino cinema legend can watch FPJ: Da King every Sunday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

“This collaboration between CIGNAL, TV5, Brightlight Productions and ABS-CBN marks the start of greater cooperation among our various industry players and begins a new era of partnership,” said Robert Galang, president and CEO of Cignal and TV5, “The airing of ASAP and FPJ’s movies on TV5 showcases the desires of TV5 and ABS-CBN to serve our viewers in the best way possible.”

“We are pleased to welcome the ASAP family and the films of the one and only King of Philippine movies to Cignal and TV5. The top-rated content, combined with Cignal and TV5’s strengths in technology, direct-to-consumer distribution, and mobile and broadband reach, will usher in a new viewing experience for fans and subscribers alike,” Galang added.

“The future of entertainment media is rapidly converging around a dynamic mix of traditional and digital platforms, with Cignal and TV5 launching new content and synergies that will disrupt conventional broadcast methods. We are committed to continuously explore more initiatives to provide the best of both worlds to all our stakeholders,” he said.

Master violinist John Lesaca: A pleasant Meralco experience

John Lesaca’s cool Meralco story

Instead of ranting like what many people do when given the run-around when paying bills online, master violinist John Lesaca, 65, stays as calm and as cool as the music he plays.

Here’s his social-media account when he personally paid his Meralco bill:

Pre-pandemic times, I would make it a point to personally pay my Meralco bills at their Commonwealth branch which is the nearest spacious office.

Parking was a minor challenge due to available space but the entire office’s respect for senior citizens would always enable me to finish my transaction with great dispatch.

Even if there is a long line of seniors, 30 minutes would be considered a long wait. Mas matagal pa ang byahe ko sa traffic.

Pandemic times, the only concern was waiting outside. A tent was provided for cover, with electric fans all around.

One can see the guards going out of their way to assist everyone, especially senior citizens and quickly usher us in whenever a client goes out of the building. They would even offer alcohol for our hands.

I still finish my transactions quickly, thanks to the knowledgeable persons behind the counters, their professionalism, politeness and efficiency. They put to shame all these call center replies of other utility companies.

All in all, one’s physical presence in transacting with Meralco (at least in the Commonwealth branch) is a pleasant task.

Incidentally, Funfare’s Meralco contact sent the following updates: 1). Meralco rates have been one of the lowest in recent years and thus is helping people cope with the effects of the pandemic, 2.) Extension of No Disconnection until Jan 31, 2021 for those consuming 200 kwh and below, and 3.) You can check Meralco’s Youtube channel for the Meralco Advisory that gives information on rates and tips every month.

(E-mail reactions at rickylophilstar@gmail.com. For more updates, photos and videos, visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on Instagram @therealrickylo.)

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