The search for the next OPM Star continues on Day 5 as throngs of aspiring performers from Metro Manila tried their luck at the OPM@PAGCOR Nationwide Talent Search for the Total OPM Performer. The Metro Manila auditions began March 28 and ends today, April 1.
Semi finals for the Metro Manila leg is scheduled on April 4 at the Altitude 64 of Airport Casino Filipino. The Top Four will be picked and will join the OPM@PAGCOR Grand Finals on June 10, 2011 at the PAGCOR Grand Theater of Airport Casino Filipino.
Sixty-five year old Jerry Tuazon, one of the nearly 1,000 hopefuls who participated in the Metro Manila auditions said the talent search gave him more reasons to fulfil his dream of becoming a singer. A retired employee of one of the biggest drugstores in the country, Jerry had to set aside his dream during his younger years to raise his family.
“Now that my five children are all grown-up and have families of their own, I can do what I wanted to do most...to sing,” he shared. Jerry added he joined several singing contests before but most of them, he said have age limit. “This is a welcome break for aspiring singers like me. It gives us a reason to believe that it’s never too late to reach our dreams.”
Similar to Jerry, two call center agents also set aside their childhood dream of becoming singers to help their families financially. 42-year old Teresa Liñan from Mandaluyong and 26-year old Jason Allauigan from Manila said they chose to work in a call center for practical reasons.
Though paid to sing for weddings and other special events, Jason said he needs a stable income to help send his siblings to school. “But now that they are already professionals, I can already pursue my dream. I am glad that this talent search came at the right time,” he said.
Meanwhile, Teresa shared that love for singing runs in her family. She had gigs together with her band in few restaurants before and had joined several amateur singing contests but she was not given enough opportunities to make a living out of it. “Singing is really my passion. That’s why I’m glad that this opportunity came. This may be the chance that I’ve been waiting for. There are lots of undiscovered talents out there who have not been given a chance to shine,” she said.
Teresa and Jason shared that if the OPM@PAGCOR talent search gives them a break in the music industry, they will willingly give up their career to live their dream.
According to OPM Secretary Dingdong Avanzado who was one of the judges for the Metro Manila auditions, they already spotted some auditionees who have the potential of becoming professional singers. “But we are not only looking for good singers. We are looking for someone who doesn’t only have the voice but also the personality...that’s why we call it the search for the total performer,” he said.
Avanzado added that aspiring performers need not adopt the style of well-known OPM singers; neither do they need to belt out like a diva to be noticed. “We want the participants to show us their own, unique style. We know there are a lot of them in these auditions,” he added.
While almost half of the auditionees are in their 20’s, more than 10% of the participants who are way beyond their 40’s are still hoping that the talent search will help them realize the dreams they have set aside when they were younger.
Apart from the screenings in Luzon and Metro Manila, provincial auditions for the OPM@PAGCOR Nationwide Search for the Top OPM Performer will also be held in Bacolod (April 7), Cebu (April 10) and Davao (April 13).