Born with the proverbial silver spoon and having a family rooted in politics and show business, Sharon Cuneta beguiled her adoring public initially with bubble gum anthems such as “Mr. DJ,” “Kahit Na Maputi Na Ang Buhok Ko,” and “Highschool Life.” Her first motion picture starrer was Dear Heart, the picture-perfect coming age movie of an affluent young miss and her first love.
Soon enough, she dazzled in the trilogy composed of Bukas Luluhod Ang Mga Tala, Bituing Walang Ningnging, and Sana’y Wala Nang Wakas. All her fanatics are aware of her grand slam best actress win for Madrasta and to many, Nung Iniwan Mo Ako reigns as the ultimate Cuneta movie.
That is why, it is a no-brainer why Megastar is her title, not to mention her being acknowledged as one of the last four Philippine movie queens, together with Nora Aunor, Maricel Soriano, and Vilma Santos – a universally accepted truth in this side of local Tinseltown.
Regine Veleasquez’s story, on the other hand, was of the Cinderella kind. An amateur singing contest contender who landed a coveted spot in Ang Bagong Kampeon, the premier televised singing contest hosted by the late, great comedian Bert Marcelo and Pilita Corales. In the talent show, she won all the elimination rounds and eventually became the victor.
Her ascent to superstardom was a slow burn, with her early hits such as the revival of “Narito Ako,” “Kung Maibabalik Ko Lang,” and “Urong Sulong.” Soon, her concert venues were always full-packed. Movies with Christopher de Leon, Aga Muhlach, and Robin Padilla were box office sensations.
First love was the ‘90s kilabot ng mga kolehiyala Ariel Rivera and the man she married, singer and songwriter Ogie Alcasid. And yes, her title, the Songbird, fits her perfectly. She earned it, with blood, sweat, tears, and talent.
Now, Mrs. Francis Pancratius Pangilinan and Mrs. Herminio Jose Alcasid, Jr., are together again on stage, for the repeat of Iconic, an artistic collaboration they did pre-pandemic times.
What to expect with the repeat, Cuneta says: “There will be a lot of surprises of course. We will add some new songs but we will maintain the repertoire of the first concert held at the Araneta because they are the songs that our public wants.”
Velasquez interjects: “There will be solo numbers and the duets that we are about to do, yun ang exciting part, you know, we have different voice ranges. Ate Sharon is an alto, while I border on the soprano.”
Speaking of voice, Regine comes clean: “My voice does not sound the same of course. I think it will not be realistic that at my age I still sound like I am 18 years old. You know, there are so many things that happen to a woman’s body that affect her emotions and of course voice. There was a time when it was easy for me to reach all the high notes but now, may effort na talaga.”
Cuneta adds: “Yes, may effort nga siya but she can still reach them. Ako kasi, for the past three years, I have not been singing so doing this, it gives me butterflies in my stomach, Regine assures me that with practice, the groove and feels will be back in no time. I am ecstatic that I am doing the concert with her.”
The two singers admit that they miss the energy coming from the audiences, the singing along, the instantaneous and sincerest applause.
“There is something magical when you perform on stage. Nothing beats that feeling of seeing the people happy, singing with you and that sense of appreciation is priceless,” Velasquez declares.
“What I like most about the venue now is that it is more intimate. I truly look forward to being with the people who love and support Regine and I. I know that our songs have a special meaning to them. And this is our manner of giving back the love they have given to us,” Cuneta states.
The two superstars’ back-to-back concert is happening at Marriott Grand Ballroom, Resorts World Manila on June 17 and 18. Directed by Paolo Valenciano with musical direction by Louie Ocampo and Raul Mitra, it is produced by Full House Theater Company.
Tickets for Iconic are available on TicketWorld and SM Tickets.