Farmer from Visayas is Tawag ng Tanghalan champ
(The Freeman) - March 12, 2017 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - It seemed not too long ago that ABS-CBN’s “It’s Showtime” was taking a heavy beating at the ratings, what with its rival program hitting gold with an accidental split-screen tandem and a novelty teleserye spoof.

Just when everyone thought that the Vice Ganda-led variety show had better pack up, the beleaguered noontime production found their own gold and a new lease in life after it restaged the iconic “Tawag ng Tanghalan” singing competition, which was first aired on ABS-CBN from 1953 to 1972, and again from 1987 to 1988 (among its most famous victors are Nora Aunor, Bobot Mortiz and the late Pepe Pimentel).

After a year-long staging, It’s Showtime’s “Tawag ng Tanghalan” concluded in grand fashion yesterday at the Newport Performing Arts Theater of Resorts World, Pasay City with six finalists battling out for one final time to earn the distinction of being the tilt’s first grand winner.

In the end, Noven Belleza of Victorias City, Negros Occidental was declared the champion after performing an Air Supply medley in his cool, effortless style of singing – earning a score of 99.96 percent from the distinguished judges namely, Rey Valera, Louie Ocampo, Ogie Alcasid, Rico J. Puno, Jaya, Nyoy Volante, Mitoy Yonting, Yeng Constantino, Erik Santos, Karla Estrada, K Brosas and It’s Showtime hosts Karylle and Billy Crawford.

For his feat, the humble farmer received P2 million  worth of cash, house and lot, a recording contract under Star Music, and a musical package from JB Music.

YouTube sensation Sam Mangubat of Batangas, meanwhile, as named first runner-up while Froilan Canlas of Camarines Sur finished third runner-up.

Belleza also bested grand finalists Pauline Agupitan of Batangas, Carlmalone Montecido of Bacolod and Marielle Montellano of Cebu.

“Tawag ng Tanghalan” also announced that the well-loved segment will begin its new season next week, this time featuring contestants ages 7 to 13. (FREEMAN)

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