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Oct 25th
Home Sections Entertainment Charice Pempengco Energizes Filipino-Canadian Fans
Charice Pempengco Energizes Filipino-Canadian Fans PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - Entertainment
Saturday, 05 June 2010 12:56


The News UpFront: (TOP STORY) as of Saturday, June 5, 2010 

As dusk settled in Toronto on Friday (June 4, 2010), hundreds of Filipino families thronged eastern Canada's largest shopping mall where Filipino singer Charice, now 18, showed her charm and talent. Unmindful of the inconvenience, they trekked from near and far and waited long hours for the opportunity to see, hear and touch her as she autographed her first CD -- testament to her meteoric rise to fame. The moment was one of pride for many Filipinos in Canada.




Charice Wows, Rallies Filipinos in Toronto




Member, Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE)

and Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA)


T ORONTO – Hordes of adoring fans filled eastern Canada's largest downtown shopping mall Friday (June 4, 2010) in what could be the biggest single turnout of Filipinos ever to gather for a visiting entertainer.


Charice, the erstwhile Charice Pempengco of Ellen DeGeneres fame, collected money and a newfound fame signing autographs of her first CD which, at $16 per, sold like the proverbial hot cakes at the local Indigo bookstore.


Click the link: &feature=email" target=_blank>&feature=email for her video coverage by broadcast journalist Imelda Suzara.


T he legion of screaming devotees clogged the historic Eaton Centre, a huge shopping mall and a popular Toronto landmark, as Filipino Canadians from as far as the cities of Ottawa, Hamilton and Oshawa waited for the now 18-year-old singer for the chance to see, hear,  shake hands and be photographed.


Her presence alone made thousands of Filipinos proud. Charice was their hero, a living proof there's more to a Filipino than being a nurse, caregiver, nanny or housekeeper – a whole slew of workers which in fact thrive in Toronto.


The now single-named Charice (she dropped her last name due to family problems) performed a few numbers enough to burst an estimated 4,000 people, tucked in every nook and cranny, into an endless round of applause in the centre's atrium.


Her popularity rests not so much with her singing but in what her triumph from poverty to fame signifies to the community. It's her ability to overcome years of hardship and deprivation.


That single factor alone resonates with many members of the Filipino community who also encounter the same difficulties while they work to sustain their families back home. The parallels are real, down-to-earth struggles for the good life.


Fans had gathered as early as 5:00 a.m. – 12 hours early – for the prospect of grabbing a wristband that guaranteed entry into the bookstore and an autograph from Charice. The sheer number of people, however, overwhelmed the plan. (Click the link for video coverage: &feature=email" target=_blank>&feature=email)


A ruckus developed as security guards tried to contain the surging crowd. "Why are you pushing us?" barked the crowd. "Don't give me attitude," blared the guard. "You don't do that," yelled a Filipina back. "I know my rights," she screamed.


The tense exchange ended only when the guards pulled back. Obviously, the Filipinos knew enough to fight off even the slightest hint of discrimination. In this event where an outstanding Filipino was the honored guest, they were not to be pushovers.


Charice's fans consisted mostly of whole families – parents with their children her age and younger in tow, and grandparents.


Kateland Galingan, 13, and friend Karmela Valenzuela, 18, squeezed themselves closer to the stage to catch a glimpse of her. They're among the thousands who trooped to the mall to have a CD signed.


"We've known her for two years, mainly through watching YouTube," says Valenzuela. "Her personal story is an inspiration".


Galingan praised Charice for what she called her "very-powerful voice".


Josie Pascua, a caregiver, came with five of her friends, mainly to show support for Charice whom she considers the embodiment of triumph over adversity.


"Charice's life story is a lesson and a source of inspiration," she said. # # #


For other stories and pictures, please click the link:


PHILIPPINE VILLAGE VOICE - Redefining Community News
Currents & Breaking News

Volume 4, Issue No. 11 / News That Fears None, Views That Favor Nobody /

. . . . . A community service of Philippine Village Voice ( for the information and understanding of Filipinos and the diverse communities in North America . . . . . .


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