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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 October 2018

Focus on the Philippines: Sharon Cuneta is the newest coach on The Voice Kids 

Plus: ‘Kilig’ added to Oxford English Dictionary; Alden Richards to headline remake of Korean series; Filipino film to screen in French festival; Korean crooner wins I Love OPM.
Sharon Cuneta is joining The Voice Kids Philippines. Courtesy Flair Events
Sharon Cuneta is joining The Voice Kids Philippines. Courtesy Flair Events

The Voice Kids Philippines has landed a new coach after Sharon Cuneta signed on for the forthcoming third season. The popular actress, singer and television presenter will replace Sarah Geronimo on the panel of the show, which will return later in the year. Geronimo, who was a coach in the first two editions of the programme, announced last month she wanted to concentrate on her music career. 

The 50-year-old Cuneta has starred in more than 50 films and recorded 40 albums over a near 40-year career. She joins current coaches Lea Salonga and Bamboo Mañalac on the panel. The Voice Kids Philippines is open to contestants ages 7 to 13. “I’m very excited,” Cuneta told ABS-CBN News. “I can’t wait to be with Bamboo and Lea and the kids – and to be with my fans every week. The Voice is such a special show to me.” Since debuting in 2014, the Filipino version of the international talent quest has often topped the ratings.

‘Kilig’ added to Oxford English Dictionary

The Filipino word “kilig” has been added to the Oxford English Dictionary. With no direct English translation, the noun has been defined as “exhilaration or elation caused by an exciting or romantic experience; an instance of this, a thrill”. The word can also be used as an adjective to describe a “thrilled, elated, gratified” individual.  The word, popularised on romantic dramas on Filipino films and television series in the late 1990s, has often been used to describe the relationships between on-screen couples. Sample phrases offered by the OED are “kilig to the bones” and “kilig factor”. “Teleserye”, defined as a Filipino soap opera, has also been added to the dictionary. 

Alden Richards in remake of Korean series

Popular Filipino actor Alden Richards will star in a forthcoming Philippine remake of the hit Korean television series My Love From the Star. Richards will take on the lead male role originally played by Korean superstar Kim Soo Hyun.  The 24-year-old is currently one of the country’s biggest celebrities. He shot to fame last year on the noontime variety programme Eat Bulaga! (Lunchtime Surprise) along with on-screen partner Maine Mendoza. The duo, popularly known as fictional couple AlDub, set the world-­record for the most-discussed single topic on Twitter last year. Veteran director Joyce Bernal, who will helm the remake, said the show’s female lead has yet to be cast. “It would be great if it’s Maine, right?” she told the Philippine Entertainment Portal. “Their tandem is already tried and tested. Let’s just wait and see.” 

Filipino film to screen at French festival

The black-and-white animated feature Manang Biring, directed by Filipino filmmaker Carl Joseph Papa, has been selected to screen at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival, to be held in France from June 13 to 18. Manang Biring tells the story of a terminally ill woman who wishes to spend Christmas with her estranged child. The film bagged the top prize in last year’s Cinema One Originals Festival in Manila. It was the first animated feature to win Best Picture in the festival’s 11-year run. In shooting his acclaimed film, Papa used the animation technique of rotoscoping, which required scenes to be filmed live before animators redrew and traced over every single frame. Papa said he was inspired by American filmmaker Richard Linklater’s 2001 film Waking Life, which used the same ­approach.

Korean crooner wins I Love OPM

Yohan Hwang, a Korean student, won the grand finale of I Love OPM, a singing competition featuring amateur foreign acts performing Filipino songs. “I want to stay in the Philippines forever,” said 20-year-old Hwang. “I want to do a lot. Actually my first plan is to have my own album. Then I want to do movies.” During the final, Hwang bested American balladeer Ryan Gallagher, Korean quintet J Morning and Pakistani rocker Harris Dio Smith, who had been living in Dubai since 2006 until his Filipino bandmates encouraged him to audition for the ­programme. Hwang won a 2 million-peso (Dh156,000) cash prize and a recording contract. Presented by Anne Curtis and Eric Nicolas, I Love OPM was broadcast worldwide, including in the Middle East, on The Filipino Channel.

artslife@thenational.ae