Apple Abarque experiences on PDA

Friday, August 29, 2008

Last Friday, some scribes covering the entertainment beat met ex-Pinoy Dream Academy Season II scholar Apple Abarquez where the beauteous Cebuana narrated her experience inside the Academy.

She was surprised at the low support from televiewers as shown in the text votes that she gathered but said she has no bitterness. She’s sad, though, because she felt she still has so much to learn but then she had to accept the fate.

During the presscon, Apple’s Mama Lita Abarquez said that her daughter’s early exit was a relief for the family. They saw how Apple had sacrificed so much of her private life inside the academy especially with the unfounded issues thrown against the lovely Cebuana warbler.

Apple had a show in Davao last weekend and she’ll do another one in Ayala Center Cebu this weekend.

She had to put her college studies on hold (one year and a half to go) as she waits for her contract to expire. With her talent and good looks, Apple is expected to rise to fame even more than the other co-scholars.

Serna: Save Van with your text votes

Another Cebuano PDA scholar, Van Pojas, is in danger of getting expelled from the academy this weekend. This is another challenge for the Cebuanos to prove that our text votes really count and that the so-called Cebuano vote is not a hoax after all.

Van’s manager, Mario Colmenares, when told that there is no reason to feel scared of the possibility of his talent getting expelled. Van is one of the most popular scholars not only because of his talent but also, and more noticeably so, because of his smoldering looks. You can only wish that those loud applauses can be transformed into text votes.

Text PDA VAN to 231 (for Smart, Talk ‘n Text and Addict Mobile subscribers) and 2331 (for Globe, Touch Mobile and Sun Cellular subscribers) and be counted.

The Academy’s finest meets ASAP’s pride

Sunday, August 24, 2008

While the scholars were cooking up a storm early this afternoon, the bell alarmed signaling Laarni’s performance on ASAP ‘08. Everyone immediately gathered in the living room and was soon glued to the television. All were awe struck at the powerful voices they were beholding and they gushed on about how captivating their fellow scholar was.

Laarni was truly a star as she shone in her showdown with ASAP’s pride, Zsa Zsa Padilla. She sang a heartfelt rendition of Hiram and had no inhibitions in expressing emotions. She continued to internalize all throughout the performance and was able to execute lessons she learned in the Academy.

The Independent Woman was exhilarated with the experience and was very proud to be doing a duet with the renowned Divine Diva. Zsa Zsa was equally pleased with their number and she acknowledged Laarni’s fantastic interpretation of the piece. Before they parted, she reminded Laarni to continue inspiring people with her music.

Meanwhile, the scholars returned to planning a birthday surprise for host, Nikki Gil.

Martin Nievera visits Pinoy Dream Academy

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Concert King Martin Nievera, who's been known as the "Concert King of the Philippines" for 25 years now, visited the Pinoy Dream Academy on Tuesday. He was there to share his wisdom and experience as a top-notch, veteran performer.

Though celebrities have been dropping surprise visits in the Academy for the past weeks, the scholars were still overwhelmed when Nievera walked inside the Academy.

The Concert King sat down with the scholars as he spoke of his experiences as a performer and host in the course of his 25-year career.

The scholars were all ears when Nievera advised them to cherish their stay inside the Academy as well as their mentors and fellow scholars.

The singer also told them to never stop reinventing themselves, as it is an endless process and that they should always feel that they are winners no matter what.

Furthermore, he reminded the scholars how blessed they are for being granted an opportunity that was unheard of for struggling singers during his time.

A tête-à-tête with Nievera wouldn't be complete without his witty remarks and funny gabs and the scholars got a firsthand experience of these.

By the end of Martin's visit, the scholars have had their share of laughs that can last a week and priceless lessons that can help them in the future.

What more exciting happenings will take place inside the Academy? How many more celebrities will the scholars meet?

To find out watch PDA nightly after after "Iisa Pa Lamang" only on ABS-CBN.

The real challenge is outside the Academy

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

One thing that Bea, Christian, and Apple, the latest expelled Scholars of Pinoy Dream Academy Season 2, have in common is that a lot of intrigues have been thrown at them while they were still inside the Academy. Now that they are back in the real world, they are more than ready to clear all the issues.

Bea easily got the attention of PDA viewers with her strong presence on screen. Some think that the girl from Alabang is highly opinionated and pro-active while others think she’s bossy and snobbish. The perception might have been borne by her tiff with Laarni in their first few weeks inside the Academy.

What does she have to say about this?

“I am misjudged to be unfriendly because of the way I look but I’m really friendly. I am used to dealing with people from all walks of life and I am not the type who judge people based on where they come from,” she says.

What about the misunderstandings she had with Laarni?

“It was a matter of adjusting. I must admit that it wasn’t easy to get used to her but I can honestly say that I like her for who she is. It just took a while for me to adjust but when I finally did, it was easier to reach out,” Bea says matter-of-factly. She also adds that from the very start, she has utmost respect for Laarni and her talent.

What’s the status of her relationship with Miguel?

“Miguel and I are in an open relationship, which means that we have each other for support. What we have is both romantic and platonic because we acknowledge the fact that we can’t commit [to each other] full-time because we still have dreams to chase,” she explains.

Christian made quite an impression on the viewers for his largely undeveloped talent. Besides proving himself, the 25-year-old Hero channel dubbing talent also had to cope with several issues inside the Academy. One of these was the departure of his two closest friends, Ross and Jet.

How did he feel when Ross and Jet left?

“I was really scared at first because everybody had a group inside the Academy. I instantly clicked with Ross and Jet because we were the oldest Scholars, so when they decided to drop out, I found myself alone. I was hesitant to hang out with the other Scholars because I was afraid that they’d find it intrusive but they were the ones who welcomed me with open arms. I was sad that my two closest friends left the Academy but the other Scholars made it easier for me,” he explains.

Christian was also one of the Scholars who had a fight with Laarni. The two had a misunderstanding while preparing for an assignment for movie/TV director Jose Javier Reyes, who is a resident mentor.

How did he settle the problem with Laarni?

“I’m not the type to bear grudges. After our misunderstanding, I reached out to Laarni and we actually got really close. She became one of my best friends inside the Academy and while I was still there, I confided in her,” he intimates.

Among the three, Apple is the one who had the most intrigues thrown at her. The 19-year-old Cebuana proved that she can be friends with everybody but some questioned her intentions, especially about Miguel.

What does she have to say to the people who think she is trying to steal Miguel from Bea?

“Miguel and I are just friends and Bea is my Scholar best friend. The three of us have always been tight and after Bea left, Miguel and I just carried on with the friendship that we have,” she explains.

Did she get the chance to talk things out with Bea?

“Actually, I was with Bea and her family the day after I was expelled. For us, there’s nothing to talk about because we know the real score. Miguel and I are just friends and Bea knows that,” she insists.

How about the baby talk that some viewers find irritating?

“I baby talk because Mommy Bunny finds it funny. She misses Daddy Chivas and Jether so much and whenever I baby talked, she was amused and temporarily forgot about her longing for her family. I just wanted to help Mommy Bunny deal with being away from her family,” she says.

Serna: 'For the First Time,' a potential hit

Friday, August 15, 2008

Just like any other Cebuano who has been following the ongoing Pinoy Dream Academy (PDA) Season II and rooting for their fellow Cebuano, I still cannot figure out how on earth was PDA scholar Apple Abarquez dropped from the rooster by garnering a low percentage of text votes.

Had the vaunted Cebuano vote lost its strength this time? Or have the Cebuanos been remiss in supporting a talented and promising entertainer from their own ranks?

These and a few other questions still continue to haunt my memory, tsk-tsk!

PDA 2 scholars meet the press

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

As a part of the public image management lessons of the Pinoy Dream Academy (PDA) scholars, esteemed and well-known members of the press will help prepare them for future showbiz interviews and press conferences.

Manila Standard Today Entertainment Editor Isah Red shared to them lessons on public imaging and maintaining good relationships with members of the press.

The respected entertainment editor also gave the scholars tips on how to stick to their image and evolve when needed for fans not to grow tired of them.

The scholars were also sent to the Dance Hall where well-known entertainment reporters and columnists Cristy Fermin and Ogie Diaz were waiting for them.

The two seasoned reporters grilled Laarni Losala, Apple Abarquez, and Miguel Mendoza. The three answered the fiery questions while the rest of the scholars and Isah Red watched them from the classroom.

Cris Pastor and Liezel Garcia were interviewed next by WRR DJ Laila via a phone patch.

PDA Season 2 airs at 5:30 p.m. and PDA Season 2 Primetime, weeknights after "My Girl" on ABS-CBN.

There’s life after Pinoy Dream Academy

Saturday, August 2, 2008

For Bunny, Iñaki, and Sen, recently expelled from Pinoy Dream Academy, along with Poy, an honorary scholar, life goes on. They may not have made it to Pinoy Dream Academy Season 2’s Top 6 but that doesn’t stop them from pursuing their dreams.


Bunny, who wished she’d be the grand winner, is happy that she is now reunited with her daughter and husband. She is also glad that finally her cyst in her throat had been removed and is now undergoing therapy. “No matter how long that will take, I will willingly go through so that I can go back to singing,” she says.

She discovered that she had a cyst in her throat that greatly affected her singing inside the Academy.

“I have gone through a lot, and this is just the beginning for me, my husband and my daughter,” she adds.

Chivas, her husband, who was with her in the Academy had been expelled earlier than she was because of his episodic collapses.

Life became harder without her husband by her side in the Academy, but she never gave up the fight.

“I really want to thank them and I hope that they continue supporting me outside the Academy. I’m really doing everything that I can to make them happy and hopefully, the removal of my cyst would be the start of better performances dedicated to them,” she says.


Iñaki, nephew of ’80s rock icon Juan Miguel Salvador, is taking things one at a time. Already, the young man is being deluged with offers to perform here and there. But now that he is still tied down to the Academy’s supervision, he has to weigh things over. He may not have ended up in the Top 6, but he is very thankful for the amount of exposure he got through his stay in the Academy.

While others see him an arrogant rich kid, others think he’s a strong-willed young man who knows what he wants in life.

Now that he’s back in the outside world, Iñaki is aware of the negative things some people say about him. He admits that he may have done a couple of stuff that came off as irritating or even offensive to others but he’s also humble enough to own them up and apologize to those who think they were offended.

“I hope that the people would give me another chance to prove that contrary to what some think, I am actually a good person,” he says.

Is there anything he regrets doing or not doing inside the Academy?

“I regret the things I did that have offended anyone or hurt their feelings in any way,” he says, sincerity evident in his eyes.

What are his plans after PDA?

“I want to pursue my singing career. Maybe come up with an album or venture into songwriting. I want to work with my friends, like Christian Bautista and Sam Concepcion, and of course my idol Gary V,” says the young man who is very much into theater.


Many couldn’t believe Sen, a cancer survivor, who Media Performance Mentor Joey Reyes called “The Saint” had been expelled.

He was a strong favorite to last through to the finals.

Sen won the followers of the nightly Pinoy Dream Academy with his good looks, affable personality, and a talent that was nearly taken away from him in a car crash. The accident was a blessing in disguise for Hansen as it gave doctors the window to see that he had thyroid cancer.

The prognosis was devastating. He couldn’t use his voice to sing, not ever. Yet, persistence and perseverance became his best friends. After successfully battling cancer, he came home to his mother’s native country to start a career as a singer.

He auditioned to be a scholar on the first season of Pinoy Dream Academy but unfortunately, he didn’t make it. When the Academy’s door opened for a new batch of scholars, Sen tried his luck once more.

What made him audition again?

“I have always been a fighter. I was inflicted with cancer and I fought it. I came home to the Philippines to fulfill my dreams and there’s no way a rejection is going to hold me back. I didn’t make it before but it doesn’t mean that I can’t make it the second time around,” he says.

Was he aware of the risks?

“Very much, actually. I knew I was risking getting another rejection but I still did it anyway. My efforts paid off and I was able to get in this time,” he says with a smile.

Was he disappointed when he was expelled?

“Of course I was disappointed. I was really close to getting in to the Top 6 but I got voted out. Nonetheless, I don’t believe that getting expelled makes me less of a performer. What I believe is that my getting expelled is just a start of good things to come. As long as I continue working hard, I know that I’ll be able to achieve my dreams,” he says.


Among the four, Poy is the only one who was not able to snag a spot in this season’s Top 16. She was one of the four wildcards who vied for the chance to get into the Academy. Unfortunately, she failed to get the text votes needed for her to become an official scholar.

To her and her fans’ delight, she was given the opportunity to enter the Academy as an honorary scholar tasked to clinch the star scholar title thrice. Each star scholar award was equivalent to a prize money of P50,000 and had she fulfilled her assignment as an honorary scholar, she could’ve decided whether to take home P150,000 or carry on as a regular scholar and battle it out with the rest for this season’s Grand Star Dreamer title. Although she was consistently in the Top 3 each week, Poy failed to win the star scholar award.

Was she disappointed when she failed to carry out her assignment?

“No. In my opinion, I was able to fulfill my job as an honorary scholar. In my four-week stay, I consistently made it to the Top 3 and that’s worth everything for me,” she said. She also added that she is really happy that she was able to help bring out the best in the other scholars as her presence made them work harder.

What does she plan to do after her stint on PDA?

“Strike while the iron is hot! I will surely grab any opportunity that comes my way,” she said, beaming.

Who does she want to win this season?

“In terms of vocal ability, I think it’s a toss between Laarni and Bugoy,” she replied.

As different as Bunny, Iñaki, Sen, and Poy are perceived by people, one thing’s for sure: they all have made impressions that will never be easily forgotten. They are four individuals who dared to fulfill their dreams inside the Academy. Even though they didn’t clinch spots in this season’s Top 6, they have successfully endeared themselves to the viewers who are eagerly waiting for the next step that they are going to make.