MANILA, Philippines—Lea Salonga will be one of the four judge-coaches of ABS-CBN’s upcoming reality singing competition “The Voice of the Philippines”—the local version of the multinational TV franchise “The Voice.”
“I was very interested in ‘The Voice’s’ format, having seen the show in the US and really enjoying it. I’m a fan,” Salonga told the Inquirer.
A unique feature of the “The Voice” is the “blind audition,” which requires the judge-coaches to choose contestants based solely on their singing ability.
Joining the Tony award-winning artist in the star-studded panel are singer-actress Sarah Geronimo, rocker Bamboo Mañalac and another “world-class performer,” who will be named soon.
Dubbed as “The Voice that Conquered the World” in the show’s teasers, Salonga said that it didn’t take much convincing to accept the TV stint. “We just needed to finalize my schedule. Thankfully, everything worked out. The good folks over at ABS-CBN really worked with me in getting everything aligned,” she said.
Salonga, who juggles various projects both locally and abroad, added that she’ll be staying in the Philippines over the course of the competition, which is slated to premiere in the second quarter the year. “I’ll be home every step of the way,” she said.
Meanwhile, asked if she thinks she will be a more effective as a judge or mentor, Salonga said: “The two are kind of intertwined. None of us on the coaching end just judges. We are all invested in our own teams so I don’t think we’ll be all that objective!”
Hosted by Toni Gonzaga, “The Voice of the Philippines” will hold auditions on February 23 in Bacolod, Iloilo, Tacloban and Cebu; March 2 in General Santos, Zamboanga, Cagayan De Oro and Davao; and March 9 in Metro Manila, Palawan, Laoag, Naga, Legazpi, Baguio and Dagupan.