I was ecstatic when El Gamma Penumbra won the first Asia’s Got Talent. It was a moment of pride for the Philippines.
But I got caught up in another story — the story of how Gerphil Flores, who placed third in this same show, was once rejected in the local version of the talent show, Pilipinas Got Talent, five years ago. Two lady judges told her that she was better off using her voice to sing pop songs rather than her classical choices. As a result, she was eliminated. Gerphil (known then as Fame) stood her ground and told the judges that it was what she did well, that she was hopeful that her kind of singing (a cross-over combining pop with classical singing) would catch on with the young people.