Sanya set to explore off-beat roles

Jerry Donato - The Philippine Star
Sanya set to explore off-beat roles

MANILA, Philippines — Sanya Lopez has definitely what it takes to be a leading lady. Her recent onscreen partnerships with Gabby Concepcion and Sen. Bong Revilla in First Yaya and Agimat ng Agila, respectively, can attest to it. Both her romantic-comedy and fantasy-drama shows performed well in the ratings game.

In spite of her continued success, Sanya seems to view herself a work in progress. She is in learning mode. This sense of humility will be her secret weapon to scoring more engaging projects and eventually acing them.

“Kapag sobra-sobra na yung blessings na natatanggap mo, kailangan mo pa ring i-remind yung sarili mo na kalma ka lang at kung anuman yung nangyayari sa’yo, maging thankful ka lang talaga (When blessings are overflowing, you need to remind yourself to remain humble and thankful),” said Sanya in a recent virtual media call for her contract renewal as a GMA Artist Center talent.

“Pero ‘wag na ‘wag mong ilalagay sa ulo mo kung anuman yun (You should never let it get to your head),” added she. “Maging happy ka lang. Kung meron kang kayang i-share, share it to others and make them happy. I want to remind myself every day to stay humble at (dun) ka minahal nang tao.”

Her attitude towards fame only goes to show Sanya’s realistic understanding of show business, even if, at some point of her career, she became visible from Mondays to Saturdays because of First Yaya and Agimat ng Agila.

“I feel so blessed. Sabi ko nga, di ko alam kung ano yung nararamdaman ko (I couldn’t explain my feelings),” said Sanya of her new contract with the Kapuso network. “I didn’t know if I’m excited or overjoyed. Dito ko naramdaman na pinapahalagahan ka ng GMA Network at alam nila na meron silang plano para sa’yo (I feel being valued and I know the network has plans for me). Partly (nang) nararamdaman ko, nanduon ako sa kailangan kong talagang galingan pa at ayoko kong masira yung tiwala na binigay nila para sa akin.”

What can fans look forward to in the next chapter of Sanya’s very promising career?

“What I know is there is a movie, (although) pinag-uusapan pa lang, and there will be more surprises,” said she. “May paniniwala ako na hangga’t hindi pa nangyayari, hindi ako talaga magkukwento. I’m so excited at what (these projects) are and I also want to know (the details).”

Since she now has a better grasp of the kilig, feel-good genre, Sanya wouldn’t mind starring in another rom-com series.

“I just want to explore rom-com kasi ngayon lang ako nakagawa nang rom-com talaga,” said she. “Aside from that, I want to play a superhero character (or a character with some magical power).” Although she has done the latter in Encantadia, with Glaiza de Castro, Gabbi Garcia and Kylie Padilla as fellow lead stars, Sanya wished for a solo starrer in which “everything rests upon her (my character’s) shoulders.”

Like any actors out there, Sanya is also up for challenging roles, like that of a lesbian.

“I want to experience what it is like to be partnered with a woman,” said she, “and I find it challenging.” For the future LGBT-oriented series, Sanya would like to work with Solenn Heussaff as well as Glaiza and Rhian Ramos, who topbilled the lesbian-themed The Rich Man’s Daughter. At the end of the day, however, Sanya will take on every project that GMA thinks is fit for her.

“Whatever project is given to me (I will accept),” said she. “I trust them and lahat nang nangyari sa akin ay dahil din naman sa kanila. Malaki ang tiwala ko na kahit anong proyekto ang ibigay nila sa akin, for sure hindi nila ako pababayaan (I trust my management because it is responsible for the success of my career and it will look after me).”

With that, Sanya has established a good relationship with her management and what she likes about it is: “They also listen to my suggestions and my thoughts on certain projects,” she said. “Para kasing relationship din yan, kapag hindi nag-uusap (kayong) dalawa ay mahirap yan. Kailangan talagang pag-usapan kung may problem, dapat sila din yung unang-una kong pagsasabihan, dapat kayong dalawa lang ang nakakaalam, open naman po sila and open din naman ako (Your relationship with your management is like any regular relationship. Both parties need to talk things over. If I have any concerns, I should raise them first with them. We have to be open to one another).”

Looking back on the past year and thinking of how things turned out in her career, Sanya couldn’t help but feel surprised. “Lagi akong sinu-surprise, ang daming blessings na dumarating sa akin bigla,” said she, who also wishes good fortune for others.

“Hindi ko talaga iniisip kung sino ako sa ngayon (I never think of what I have become today),” said Sanya. “Lagi ko pa ring sinasabi na, ‘Ikaw pa rin si Shai, ito ka before.’ Lagi kong ni-re-remind ang sarili ko na, ‘Tandaan mo na ganito ka dati,’ para di lumaki ang ulo ko (I would tell myself that you used to be like this before, for me to never let success go to my head).”

“Kung sino man yung Sanya na nakilala niyo (dati), ako pa rin yung Sanya na nandito sa harap ninyo,” said she. “Walang kailangang magbago (I remain the same person you used to know. There’s no reason for me to change).”

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