Why Yeng Constantino prefers to do things her way
While it was music that she has always wanted to make a career out of, Yeng Constantino did fantasize about seeing herself in soap operas and films, too.
When she was a young girl, in fact, she would often stand in front of the mirror and imitate the things she saw on TV.
In 2013, seven years into her career as a musician, Yeng fulfilled her other dream, and got her first big acting project, via Siege Ledesma’s indie movie “Shift.”
Five years later, she top-billed Alec Figuracion’s “The Eternity Between Seconds,” costarring TJ Trinidad.
Both films received good reviews, won awards and were screened at festivals abroad.
“I’m fortunate that my acting ventures so far have been well-received,” she told the Inquirer in an interview. “I also got the opportunity to work with experienced actors, like TJ. He guided and taught me how to memorize long lines.”
The singer-songwriter has yet to bag an acting award, but had received nods for her performances in the said films.
“That’s already an affirmation for me, because I didn’t believe that acting was something I could actually do,” she said.
This year, Yeng is set to star in TBA Studios’ upcoming film “Write About Love,” which also features Rocco Nacino, Joem Bascon and Miles Ocampo.
“I’m also developing a story with two coproducers for an indie musical film,” Yeng related. “Hopefully, I can also land some mainstream gigs someday, even just for small roles.”
That doesn’t mean, however, that she would spend less time crafting new music. She has been writing songs, playing with melodies after releasing her sixth studio album, “Synesthesia,” last year. But no rush, she said.
“I don’t want to pressure myself into putting out a new single or album. As a songwriter, I give my myself room to create; I take my time,” Yeng related. “One of the things I have learned from Sir Rey Valera is that we should always let the kid in us play—let the creativity flow, and don’t edit yourself during the process.”
For most of her career, Yeng has been branded as a guitar-toting, pop-rock girl. Her recent material says otherwise. “A lot of my songs, especially in the beginning of my career, are pop-rock, so I guess the branding stuck. But, I experiment. I don’t want to get stuck in one genre or style,” she said.
“Synesthesia,” for instance, has a more mellow feel, inspired by classic OPM ballads.
“Actually, if you listen to my new songs, they’re different from what I was doing before, from the arrangement to the overall vibe,” she pointed out. “I was listening to a lot of Valera and George Canseco tunes when I was working on the album. My music is usually reflective of what I was inspired by during the creative process.”
Evolution is crucial, she said, but not at the expense of her artistic core.
“I love playing with different sounds, but it should still be in line with who I am as an artist. For instance, I won’t do a dance record simply because it’s popular. If it doesn’t come naturally to me, I won’t push it,” Yeng said, adding that she learned the importance of authenticity the hard way.
“When I was starting in show biz, I was told by some people that the way to go is to do birit songs, because singers who do usually achieve success. They told me that I may not last very long if I did things my way,” she related. “I don’t want to make that same mistake again.”
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