The moment that many Winnipeg Filipinos had been waiting for finally arrived on Saturday, November 22 at the Pantages Playhouse Theatre. In it’s 13th edition, CKJS Radio 810 AM’s Tuklas Talino Grand Finals showcased the wealth of singing talent in our community with an intense and entertaining contest.
Tuklas Talino 2004 junior champion Andrea Macasaet returned to win the adult competition while Reynalyne Gacilan topped in this year’s junior category.
The evening began with the junior competition in which the all-girl list of finalists was so evenly matched in talent and ability that it was anybody’s guess who would win. This year’s batch of junior contestants sang with the skill and confidence beyond what one would expect from such young singers – all 12 years old or younger.
In the end it was the petite 11-year-old Reynalyne Mae Gacilan, daughter of Lina and Rey Gacilan, who took home the top prize, singing Home from the musical The Wiz. Dressed as Dorothy in a blue dress and braided hair, Reynalyne’s age-appropriate song choice perfectly suited her young voice. She sang with the voice of a child but with the clarity and true intonation of a much older singer.
Mimoza Moureen Duot placed second, singing And I’m Telling You, supplying all the power necessary for this demanding song from the musical Dream Girls.
Ten-year-old April Rose Llave captured the 3rd place prize with another strong performance, singing pop diva Céline Dion’s I Surrender.
Youth dominated the adult category with 14-year old Andrea Macasaet delivering another powerful rendition of another song from Dream Girls, I am Changing.
Ronaldo Trinidad took 2nd place with a medley of songs by Engelbert Humperdinck and Tom Jones, Till and I Know, dressed appropriately in a tux and ruffled shirt.
Miranda Herminiano who used to participate in the Junior category is now all grown-up. She won 3rd place with a tasteful performance of Papa Can You Hear Me? dressed as the title character from the film Yentl.
Synergy Dance Company and the Big Deal Productions rap group entertained the audience during the tense period of the judges’ vote tally, as did 2006 Tuklas champions Moises Duot and Cristina Gamurot.
A fire alarm ended the evening abruptly after the 3rd place adult winner Miranda Herminiano was awarded her prize. There was brief period of confusion offstage when a fire safety door slammed down, narrowly missing stage manager Joey de Silva and blocking some of the contestants and presenters from the stage. The audience remained calm but did not leave until all the winners were announced. Fire fighters responding to the alarm, understandably, did not allow the grand prizewinner, Andrea Macasaet, to return for the traditional encore performance. It is suspected that the fire alarm was a prank as the Winnipeg Fire & Paramedic Service discovered no fire or smoke in the building.