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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Life’s a Peach

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Thai star Peach Pachara fries up success with Potato Corner 

From Bangkok, Thailand emerges a multislashie who has captured hearts and stirred viewers’ imaginations. Tagged as a “crazy rich Bangkokian” by an online article, Pachara Marcel “Peach” Chirathivat stands as so much more.

Through an intimate press conference in Manila and a quick exclusive interview with Peach in early April, I witnessed how he is not defined by his privileged background. Warm and accommodating, he appears to be an intentional actor, a soulful singer, and a driven entrepreneur. He is a testament to the potential that arises when passion and purpose intersect.

Peach’s entrepreneurial endeavors began with an intriguing cross-cultural exchange: acquiring the rights to the beloved Filipino French fry franchise – Potato Corner.

Chirathivat brought the french fry brand to Thailand which has spawned over 150 branches in the country

Recognizing a shared palate and similar taste preferences between his home country and the Philippines, he brought the brand to Thailand, together with his Filipino co-founder Nicko Falcis. The result? Over 150 successful Potato Corner branches dotting the Thailand map.

“It worked really well!” he said, attributing to Thais and Filipinos’ shared taste.

The actor-singer-entrepreneur’s connection with the Philippines is a recurring theme.

“This is my third time here. I really like it here,” he said. “Every time I come here, everything is kind of new. I love the hospitality of the people,” Peach admitted.

He admires the nation’s unwavering spirit of growth, and he’s a self-proclaimed foodie captivated by Filipino cuisine, even declaring sisig a personal favorite. Sisig is a beloved Filipino dish originating from the Pampanga region in Luzon. This Kapampangan favorite features a mix of pork jowl, ears, and belly, along with chicken liver, all seasoned with a blend of calamansi, onions, and chili peppers.

Peach sees the Philippines as an extension of his homeland and said, “The Philippines is a neighboring country to Thailand, we share similar preferences and the people are very similar as well, that’s why I like it here.”

Chirathivat’s entrepreneurial dive into franchising the brand was made with his co-founder Nicko Falcis

While business ventures have proven fruitful, the entertainment industry is where Peach truly thrives as a performer. His nine-episode Netflix series, The Believers, tackles a sensitive yet relevant theme: the intersection of faith and finance in Buddhism. The show delves into controversial topics that reflect real-life events, making it all the more impactful.

“We want to raise awareness,” Peach asserted. “With this project, we’ve been so lucky in particular that we got to air.” The show, according to him, aims to raise more questions on how to look after religions better and prevent exploitation and corruption of the faith.

Peach’s commitment to authenticity extends to his acting techniques. He draws inspiration from a Russian acting technique called Chekhov, and has also delved into the Meisner and Stanislavski techniques he learned in drama school.

While he doesn’t practice method acting or the kind that often demands actors to revisit intense, and sometimes traumatic, emotions from their past for the sake of authenticity, Peach explained the approach he implements, “You kind of imagine the certain qualities of your body and you get the feelings out of it. For example, if I ask you to walk like a lion. You have that preconceived notion in your head that will define your body movements. That’s the technique that I use.”

Thai patrons flock to grab some french fries from the beloved brand

Flourishing in different aspects of life, the seeds of Peach’s relentless drive were planted in his childhood. “I think I have seen my mom and my dad working really hard since I was a kid,” he reflected. Seeing his parents’ dedication fueled his ambitious spirit. “When I do something, I put in my hundred percent,” Peach declared.

From a multinational conglomerate heir to cultural ambassador, from budding entrepreneur to Netflix star, Peach Pachara proves how action ignites ambition. He is also proof that life’s a peach when you create or choose your flavors and make the most of every pitch life throws your way.

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