Charice sang three songs in Dubai Festival City on January 30, 2009 for Wowowee, a noontime variety and game show broadcast by ABS-CBN that often goes on the road to film episodes. Dubai Festival City is a large residential, business and entertainment development in the city of Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
BECAUSE YOU LOVE ME
LIPAD NG PANGARAP
(SOARING OF DREAMS)
Charice performed for Steve Tisch‘s 60th birthday celebration held at Sony Pictures Entertainment in Culver City, CA on February 6, 2009. Tisch is chairman and co-owner of the New York Giants, as well as a film and televison producer. He is currently a partner in Escape Artists, an independently financed film production company based at Sony Pictures Entertainment.
PLEASE DON’T STOP THE MUSIC
After the Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday night, February 22, 2009, Charice performed at a charity event held at Mr. Chow, an exclusive Beverly Hills restaurant. The event, Oscar Night at Mr. Chow, was hosted by television personality Leeza Gibbons, producer (and Charice mentor) David Foster and singer Olivia Newton-John. Other performers included Newton-John, Michael Buble and Thelma Houston. As Leeza wrote on her website:
Join us as we “party with a purpose” on Oscar Night 2009. Our first-of-its-kind event will bring together stars from film, TV, music, sports and fashion as we celebrate the worlds of celebrity and charity. Our unique approach to Oscar Night features a live webcast direct from the iconic Mr. Chow in Beverly Hills with celebrity contributors as our “Ambassadors of Change.” These stars lead by example and use their “celebrity” for the greater good. The world will be watching as we put the focus on advocacy, volunteerism, philanthropy and giving back!
In the following introductory video by Leeza, she says:
First of all, David Foster, our partner, is bringing his protege, the YouTube sensation, Charice. If you haven’t seen this sixteen-year-old powerhouse, she is phenomenal.
After a glowing introduction by David Foster, Charice opened her set with Listen, a popular Beyonce song. The audience was captivated. Eight days later, in a radio interview with Van McNeil on 99.1 WMYX in Milwaukee, David recalled:
That Ocar night, it was kind of a rowdy crowd. I was up on stage with a couple of other performers, very, very difficult to get them to quiet down. And when Charice came on, the place went silent. The girl packs a wallop like I haven’t seeen since Whitney and Celine.
To introduce Charice’s second song, David said:
We officially started recording [Charice’s] album yesterday. She went in yesterday and did a demo of this song and she’s going to perform it for you right now. If you just move back a little bit, she’s going to come out to the dance floor. This is a brand-new song . . . called Fingerprint. . . . She’s only sixteen. Incredible. Are you ready? Let’s do it! Go!
Unfortunately, “Go!” turned to “No!” Fifty-five seconds into the song, the tape with the background music skipped ahead to the next song. David and Charice gamely gave it another go, but the same thing happened! So they abandoned Fingerprint (written by singer-songwriter Robbie Nevil) and forged ahead with Gloria Gaynor‘s signature anthem to close out her set.
LISTEN and FINGERP . . .
I WILL SURVIVE
Finally, here is a high-quality video of Charice singing Listen and I Will Survive (the Fingerprint glitch was edited out). It starts with Charice’s MySpace Celebrity red-carpet interview by actress Sulinh Lafontaine.
LISTEN and I WILL SURVIVE
Okay, so I’ve got another “finally” to add. Here is a different version of Charice’s brief interview with Sulinh Lafontaine. This version and the version in the preceding video each have material that the other doesn’t have. Some editor must have been scissors-happy!
And here is the full studio version of Fingerprint. Click on the audio player below to hear it.
As charicemania.com reports, Charice hobnobbed with socialite Paris Hilton at the after-party. Charice admitted that she initially thought Paris was a snob, but after meeting her she said Paris was actually very nice and that she was more beautiful in person. Charice added:
Her personal assistant approached me and asked, “Have you met Paris?” I said, “Not yet.” Then she called Paris. Paris was thrilled when she saw me. Then I learned that she had seen me in an event and on Oprah. We took a picture. She found me really cute. She wanted to take me home with her like a doll. She’s tall, maybe that’s why she looked at me like I’m a doll.
Here is Charice’s March 4, 2009, interview on SNN (Showbiz News Ngayon) (“ngayon” means “now”) in which she talks about Paris Hilton and her Oscar experiences. Sorry, it’s not translated from Tagalog.
There were no technical glitches in Charice’s performance of Fingerprint the next morning at the Kodak Theater. She sang two songs and danced for the crowd before Oprah took the stage for Oprah’s After Oscars Special show in which the Queen of Talk interviewed the Oscar winners from the night before.
The same charicemania.com article that described Charice’s encounter with Paris Hilton includes these comments by Charice about Oprah’s After Oscars Special show:
I was given a ticket to Oprah. I was the first person to give a standing ovation when Kate WInslet’s name was called. I was particularly excited when I was backstage. There was Sean Penn, Kate Winslet, Penelope Cruz. Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) was there, but of course the best part was when I saw Oprah.
Charice regretted that she was not able to take pictures of the Oscar winners.
This one’s funny. I didn’t forget to get a picture with the Oscar (trophy), but I forgot to get pictures with the stars.
On March 27-28, 2009, Charice performed for Muhammad Ali’s Celebrity Fight Night XV held at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa in Phoenix. On Friday, March 27, Charice rocked the house at a pre-event Founders Club dinner at Roy’s Restaurant in the exclusive Desert Ridge master-planned community in Phoenix. According to Roy’s website:
Roy’s cooks for a cause at the 15th Annual Celebrity Fight Night
For the fourth year in a row, Roy’s is proud to sponsor the 15th Annual Celebrity Fight Night. Roy’s will be catering a private dinner on Friday, March 27th for the 200 Founders Club members consisting of celebrities and professional athletes.
Celebrity Fight Night will take place the next night, March 28th, at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort and Spa. The event is set to feature performances by Jon Bon Jovi, teen sensation Charice and American Idol winner Jordin Sparks. Reba McEntire will return for her fourth year as host for the evening, and David Foster will resume his role as the Musical Director for the 10th time.
Celebrity Fight Night is one of the nation’s elite charity events, and is presented in honor of Muhammad Ali. The event has helped raise over $52 million for Ali’s Parkinson Research Center at Barrow Neurological Institute, along with many other special causes and charities. Roy Yamaguchi has donated his time and resources to help all of the charities associated with Fight Night.
Charice sang three songs that night:
BODYGUARD MEDLEY: I HAVE NOTHING and
I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU
I WILL SURVIVE
The actual Muhammad Ali’s Celebrity Fight Night event was held on Saturday, March 28. For her third and final song, Charice crouched and stood on the table right in front of The Champ so she could sing directly to him. After the song, Muhammad kissed Charice on the cheek and posed for photos with her. A very special moment indeed!
I WILL SURVIVE
Now for the Before and After videos of the Muhammad Ali event. Here are Charice and mentor David Foster on the Red Carpet before the Saturday night show.
And here is Charice signing autographs and posing for photos after the show. Plus, a guest appearance by Raquel, Charice’s beloved mom.
Charice returned to Italy on April 4, 2009 to perform on Ti lascio una canzone (Leavin’ You A Song), an annual musical competition for young singers, ages ten to sixteen, that started back in 1951. Charice was invited to be an international guest artist. The show took place at the Ariston Theatre in the northwestern city of Sanremo. Charice hhad last been in Italy for Andrea Bocelli‘s birthday concert on July 20, 2008.
The show opens with a video recap of Charice’s life, narrated in Italian. At 2:16, Charice walks down a flight of stairs to belt out I WIll Always Love You. After a couple minutes of jabbering in Italian, Charice is joined by two of the show’s contestants, sixteen-year-old Sonia Mosca, and fourteen-year-old Sara Pischedda, who join her in a rousing rendition of I Have Nothing.
BODYGUARD MEDLEY: I HAVE NOTHING and
I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU
Translated highlights from the above video, courtesy of aimhigher of charicemania.com:
HOST ANTONELLA CLERICI: I would like to tell you something about a girl who managed it through life, who lives in Manila and whos story is really incredible. At the age of only sixteen, she reached the vertex of international music. A real star who dueted with Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli, all by chance!
[Antonella then invited the audience to watch a short video clip to introduce her]
ANTONELLA: Imagine yourself realizing your greatest dream; imagine the emotions of those moments! It is the joy Charice Pempengco experiences every day, sixteen years old, with one great passion: music. The great occasion that destiny decided to give her comes as if by chance. A video that a fan of hers uploadeded on the Internet was seen by millions of people, among them a producer of a famous reality show who invited her to come over to participate. Last May, at only sixteen, she was the main guest of the Oprah Winfrey show, the most popular show in America. Her every performance receives standing ovations. Whoever hears her sing marks her as the most talented girl in the world. Every success, all her tears and thoughts go to her mom, who raised her while working up to 16 hours a day jut to allow her to realize her great dream. She had a duet with Celine Dion; she had her duet with Andrea Bocelli at his birthday concert. Whoever sees her showing her talent gets a kind of sense that the stage is too small for her, it’s because Charice, on the stage, not only brings her voice but also her great heart. It is the joy of the one who is living a tale!
[Charice sings I Will Always Love You]
ANTONELLA AND JUDGES: Charice Pempengco! A phenomenon! A kid, imagine! You’re so great! She moved us all!! Mamma mia! We were saying, think about it , the fortuitousness that destiny Charice had for awhile, wait, no it doesn’t end here. I was saying, a friend put Charice on YouTube and her song made her well known all over the world. Imagine, how destiny at times is really wonderful. Here’s Michela, our wonderful interpreter. Really, it gives me goosebumps!
VERNA (JUDGE): She has a diamond throat. She has a . . . I dont know, I haven’t heard anything like it before, I swear . . . never!
CLAUDIO (JUDGE): It should take two orchestras and her voice. Does she have a producer already?
ANTONELLA: Of course she does!!
For her next song, Charice was joined by contestant Gianluca Ginoble.
After effusive praise for Charice and Gianluca, Charice wows the crowd with this Beyonce standard.
Translated highlights from the above video, courtesy of locksley90 (Charice’s comments are highlighted in blue):
0:08 = “Do you see Claudio? How nice, how sweet she is!”
0:15= “Claudio says “Me too . . . I’m a great manager! I’m the best manager in the world.”
0:19= “This girl, Charice, is very nice and very gifted. Bravo, Gianluca, bravo . . . Gianluca Ginoble is our Andrea Bocelli.”
0:38 = Actually, yes, because I’ve searched Sanremo, Italy and YouTube. And then actually I’m very happy because Italy and Philippines, they both love music.
1.05 = “You talked about the importance of your mom. Was she important for your career?”
1:11: Actually, I must say without her, I can’t do anything. Because she’s always been with me, you know, everywhere, everywhere I am. I love you!
1:20 = “She is there, isn’t she? I say hello to her! How cute! She’d be proud of you! Yes, I imagine.”
1:35 = “Jury, do you want to make a question?”
1:42= “I’m starting crying . . . that’s not possible . . . you want we have an . . . (heart attack) . . . I can’t resist, I can’t . . .”
1:49 = “We know she worked a lot . . . what does she recommend to these kids?”
2:00 = Okay, so actually, my mom taught me how to sing. I just want to say to all these kids that, you know, continue pursuing their dreams. Because that’s what I do, you know, just keep on soaring high. Because we love music.
2:25 = “That’s true, you’re perfectly right.”
2:28 = “Gianluca, if you want to sit . . . Charice says goodbye to you . . . he is still very impressed.”
2:36 = “I would like to leave here alone, and maybe this song you could dedicate it to your mom. She sings as you can see, songs from Celine Dion and Beyonce. Now she’ll sing Listen . . . Charice Pempengco!”
6:43 = “From now she will be famous all over Italy! She has moved us.”
6:52 = “The theatre . . . sorry, can’t understand . . .”
6:57 = “Incredible. Look! Look! She is so sweet! So much nice! So much special! Thank you! Luigi gives flowers to you!”
7:23= “Maestro . . . please . . . she sang live with the orchestra . . . but she is a phenomenon!”
7:33=”The mestro is without words . . . shivers . . . shivers for a live performance! The sensation is the same of the one we feel with a great star! I have no words. And all the orchestra (thinks so).”
After yet another standing ovation, Charice heeded the audience’s wish and sang Listen once again for an encore. Afterwards, with all the judges and contestants gathered onstage, a male judge told Charice:
Charice, you didn’t receive a gift from God, you are a gift from God.
Now for some behind-the-scene peeks before and after Charice’s Italian adventure. Let’s start with what happens when you show up on set with damp
Here is Charice rehearsing a couple of songs.
And here is The Most Talented Girl In The World singing a Tagalog song after the show.
BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND:
DAVID FOSTER & FRIENDS AT MANDALAY BAY
On May 23, 2008, David Foster turned the spotlight on Charice in his one-night-only concert, Hit Man: David Foster and Friends at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. That concert was a coming out party of sorts for Charice and a huge stepping stone in her career. Click here to read more details about that magical evening.
The concert, which raised money for the David Foster Foundation, an organization established by Foster in 1986 to provide financial and emotional help to the families of children needing organ transplants, was so successful that Foster returned to the Mandala Bay Events Center on May 9, 2009, for another all-star concert. Charice showed once again why she’s such a fan favorite by signing autographs prior to the show.
Charice sang four solos and finished with a group song. Before her first song, a surprise guest walked out on stage . . . Cher!
THE POWER OF LOVE
Before her second song, Charice shared these words with the audience:
Speaking of the power of love, I just want to mention these people who are very special in my life. First, he’s my friend, my producer, my mentor. He has taught me a lot of things and, of course, he’s my hero—. And of course I want to thank Oprah for believing in my dreams, in my talent, and for believing in me. Thank you so much. I love you both. And there’s nothing more powerful than the love for my mom. She’s with me tonight and I’ll always cherish her every single day. Mommy, I love you so much and Happy Mother’s Day.
ALL BY MYSELF
BODYGUARD MEDLEY: I HAVE NOTHING and
I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU
I WILL SURVIVE
Charice was then joined on stage by Clay Aiken, Heather Headley and Brian McKnight. The final song was written by David Foster and Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas in honor of Barack Obama for Oprah‘s January 19, 2009 show—the day before Obama’s inauguration.
After the concert, Charice was, as always, besieged by her loyal Chasters. And, as always, she graciously posed for pictures and signed autographs.
The next day, Sunday, May 10, was Charice’s seventeenth birthday! She thrilled her fans, many of whom had traveled hundreds or thousands of miles to be there, by stopping in at the official Chasters post-show party at Giorgio Ristorante in Mandalay Bay. Here are two videos, shot from different angles, of Charice entering the party.
Charice gave an informal speech, much of it in Tagalog, to her devoted Chasters. Her manager, Marc Johnston, then announced that Charice will launch a ten-day tour in October-November of this year. (FYI, the blonde girl sitting at the table next to Charice is Gigi Hadid, David Foster’s adopted sixteen-year-old daughter; Gigi’s mother is Yolanda Hadid, David’s spousal unit.)
After leaving the party, Charice returned to thank her Chasters once again. She drew big laughs by responding to her fans in her chipmunk voice. Much to the crowd’s delight, Charice then sang an a cappella rendition of Always You.
You want to see most of the party footage put together in one continuous video? Well, okay, as long as you asked.
Charice returned to Oprah on May 18, 2009, to debut her first single, Note To God, form her eagerly anticipated upcoming album. Charice, accompanied by her producer and mentor, David Foster, blows the roof off the joint! Even after multiple appearances on Oprah and singing with so many of her heroes all over the world, Charice remains as authentic as ever, pouring her heart and soul into every performance. You can see by the way she brushes away a tear at the end of the song that she doesn’t know the meaning of “auto-pilot.”
After a quick recap of Charice’s career, Note To God begins at 2:43 into the following video. (For all you music historians, Note To God, written by uber-songwriter Diane Warren, was included on 2006’s The High Road, JoJo‘s second album, but was never released as a single.)
In the segment after her song (7:45 into the video), Oprah welcomes Charice and introduces David Foster and Diane Warren. Oprah asks Diane, who’s sitting in the front row with David, to stand up and take a bow. When Oprah asks Diane if she just happened to have Note To God in her back pocket, Diane says:
I did. I had written the song and (gesturing to Charice) when I heard your voice, and David wanted a song for you, I thought that would be the perfect song, and wow, did you prove that way beyond what I could have hoped for. That was an amazing performance. Beautiful.
Oprah then asks David Foster what it’s like working with “this little one” considering he’s worked with so many legends. David replies:
In my world, this only happens two or three times probably in my lifetime. And I’ve worked with a lot of people. So this is one of those two or three moments. It just reminds me of when I saw Celine when she was eighteen. It’s the same feeling. And she just sings so beautifully.
Oprah then turns her attention to the girl of the hour and asks Charice if she was nervous during her song. I for one was startled at Charice’s reply. I thought that by now she would be used to performing in front of famous folks and millions of adoring fans. Charice looks visibly shaken, and her answer reveals why she is so beloved by so many—she remains humble, grounded and deeply grateful for every opportunity to share her gifts with the world.
I’m actually about to cry earlier because I was so nervous and I felt like I’m gonna faint, ’cause, I mean, this is really big for me, I mean, I sang my first song, my own song. People are going to say, “Oh, that’s Charice’s song.”
As Charice fights to hold back tears, Oprah says:
You know, when I met you about this time last year, it was . . . I’m crying too, because as I said to you backstage, you know, I’m so happy that your dream for yourself has come true. This has been your dream.
Chrice goes on to say that her life has changed a lot since the last time she appeared on Oprah. For one thing, she got to be part of her favorite movie franchise—Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, which will be released on Christmas Day, 2009.
In response to a question from Jordan, Oprah’s ten-year-old cohost for the day, Charice says she’d like to meet Justin Timberlake to try “some fast songs and dance moves ’cause I really love to dance also.” Charice also admits to having a crush on Josh Groban. “That’s a nice crush to have!” replies Oprah.
Michael Menachem’s June 27, 2009 review of Note To God in Billboard magazine, the music industry’s Bible, included these comments:
At 17, Charice’s seasoned voice should secure her a spot among the greats. “Note to God” is the embodiment of a power ballad, and Charice tackles the vocally acrobatic song delivered in a similar spirit to contemporary songs recorded by Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey and Celine Dion. . . . Legendary songwriter Diane Warren penned “Note to God,” leaving Charice with a wide open palette of emotion to build upon with a gospel choir and her own spiritual essence.
On May 21, 2009, three days after her Oprah appearance, Charice was featured in a thirty-second segment on The Insider.
Charice made a triumphant return to Italy on May 23, 2009 to perform on Ti lascio una canzone (Leavin’ You A Song), an annual musical competition for young singers, ages ten to sixteen. Her April 4, 2009 appearance on the show’s season’s premiere had been so enthusiastically received that she was invited back as an international guest artist for the semifinals show. Charice shares the stage on all her songs with the show’s young contestants.
Check out the nice big CHARICE in script lettering on the stage backdrop!
Charice opened the show with Gloria Gaynor‘s anthem, showing off some dance moves and venturing down the steps to the audience like the poised and confident diva that she is!
I WILL SURVIVE
MY HEART WILL GO ON
I BELIEVE I CAN FLY
Italy loves Charice! She was back on Ti lascio una canzone (Leavin’ You A Song) the very next week, May 30, 2009, to sing four songs on the final show of the season. Once again, Charice graciously shares the stage with the show’s young contestants.
Charice opened the show with an Eric Carmen classic.
ALL BY MYSELF
Charice then performed a duet with Italian artist Chiara Lezzi.
It was back to singing with the kids for her next song.
BECAUSE YOU LOVED ME
Charice closed the show with her brand-new single!
NOTE TO GOD
Charice continued her barnstorming tour for her new album by wowing the audience for Live With Regis and Kelly on June 16, 2010. It never ceases to amaze me how Charice’s every performance manages to send shivers up my spine and bring tears to my eyes. The purity of her performances are surpassed only by the beauty of her soul.
IN THIS SONG
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Tags: Charice Pempengco