WORDS: MIKE AQUINO
PHOTOS: ALFRED MENDOZA
It feels smaller when you’re actually there.
The Philippine Idol Stage—actually, a dressed-up SM Megamall Cinema 3—looks positively cavernous when seen on TV, but is actually just your regular cinema. For now, however, it’s an arena where the Philippines’ most closely-watched aspiring singing stars battle it out for P1 million and a recording deal.
The show needs no introduction, unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past five years. Philippine Idol was inevitable, given its US counterpart’s success in the local ratings game. But we all know this isn’t nearly accurate—Philippine Idol is a big hit because singing is a big hit to us, whether done pro or for kicks at the videoke joint. That and rags-to-riches stories and the day-to-day struggles that go with it. And family matters and bonds of friendship. All these things lay bare on Idol’s reality TV, and how we relate to it.