Will Ernie Garcia soon become the Philippines’ answer to America’s Tom Jones?
BY: DENNIS ADOBAS
Actor-singer-visual artist Ernie Garcia is lately having his hands full with assignments. The week after his pre-Valentine concert at Richmonde Hotel he got a call from GMA-7 and was told to report to the story conference of a new teleserye, “My Lover, My Wife”. After another week, he was already in the Kapuso studio taping the first episode!
“My Lover, My Wife”, featuring Maxene Magalona, Luis Alandy, Nadine Samonte and Marco Alcaraz, is being directed by Joselito Altarejos. Ernie plays supportive and understanding father to Maxene.
The singer-actor is now gathering materials for a new album. Upon the advice of Repertory Philippines’ stage director Freddie Santos, Ernie intends to record songs along the beat and rhythm of the R&B, country and rock-and-roll hits by Tom Jones, the Grammy award-winning international recording artist from South Wales.
“I must say it’s a brilliant idea!”, quips Ernie. “Until now, we still don’t have an established local Tom Jones clone. Tom Jones is such a marvelous performer with a powerful voice! I like his style. I used to open my concert repertoire with his ‘Kiss’ complete with the signature Tom Jones bumps and grinds!”
Freddie Santos was Ernie’s buddy at Repertory when he appeared in stage plays many years back, shuttling between Rep and Teatro Pilipino under National Artist for Theater Rolando Tinio.
He was the one who conceptualized Ernie’s February concert which had for a theme “love in different languages.
Ernie is contemplating to avail of the songwriting skills of TV host-comedian Joey de Leon. “I like Joey’s contemporary danceable songs with sexy and naughty lyrics”, says Ernie.
But does Joey still have time to compose new songs, what with his daily shows and travels?
“Well, I can settle for his old compositions as long as they fall under Tom Jones’ category! Pero ‘wag naman ‘yong lumang-luma”, Ernie says.
Would he mind being called a “Tom Jones copycat”?
“I wouldn’t mind at all. That’s what I really want to become!”, seriously replies Ernie.
The special screening of Mario O’Hara’s 1985 masterpiece “Bagong Hari” starring Dan Alvaro in the title role scheduled last Saturday, March 5, at the Tanghalang Manuel Conde of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, was called off due to some power supply problem caused by a busted transformer. All the establishments and offices within the CCP Complex were affected.
All shows scheduled for that day were cancelled. “ZsaZsa Zaturnnah…Ze Musikal..Back with a Vengeance!” which was supposed to play at 3pm and 8pm had to be cancelled too. Chris Millado, the musical’s director was at the gate personally saying “Sorry!” to the guests.
O’Hara came very early, and so did Alvaro. His niece Glaiza de Castro was already on the way to the venue with her parents, brother Alchris Galura and family. Lance Raymundo (who playedEmilio Aguinaldo in O’Hara’s Cinemalaya film ‘Ang Paglilitis ni Andres Bonifacio’) also came very early to give Direk Mario O’Hara some moral support. Media practitioners Art Tapalla, Alwyn Ignacio, Noel Mallonga, UPFI’s Nonoy Lauzon and many others also came only to be told about the postponement.
“Bagong Hari” screening has been rescheduled on March 12, 2pm, Saturday.