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How ‘StarStruck’s’ 4 finalists get ahead of the game

By: - Reporter
/ 12:30 AM September 15, 2019

(from top left clockwise) Lexi Gonzales, Shayne Sava, Allen Ansay and Kim de Leon

Before entering GMA 7’s reality talent search, “StarStruck,” teen hopefuls Kim de Leon, Shayne Sava, Allen Ansay and Lexi Gonzales had a faint idea of what being a professional actor is like.

It would be hard, they surmised. They were right—and more so than what they expected.

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“I knew from the get go that it was going to be hard. But not this hard. I’m still happy, though, because now I know for sure that this is what I really want to do,” 19-year-old Kim told the Inquirer.

“When we finally did acting tests, I realized that being an actor isn’t as easy as it appears. You have a lot to risk and commit. You need to have the resolve to get back up whenever you fall,” Shayne, 17, said. “But knowing all these made me love it all the more.”

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Allen, 16, recalled having a serious talk with his mother about his decision to join the contest: “She asked me, ‘Are you sure about what you’re getting into?’”

“It really is no joke—you need to pour your heart into your job,” 19-year-old Lexi said, echoing his fellow contestants’ sentiments. “But as our bosses always tell us, love your craft and it will love you back.”

After weeks of workshops and challenges, these young aspiring actors finally reached “StarStruck’s” Final 4 stage—a step away from crowning this particular edition’s Ultimate Male and Female Survivors, which will be determined in a live show tonight.

The “StarStruck” council, composed of Heart Evangelista, Cherie Gil and Jose Manalo, will be assessing the contestants’ final performances, and give 50 percent of their total scores. The other half will come from text and online voting.

Our Q&A with the quartet:

How’s your “Starstruck” journey so far?

Kim de Leon (KD): In a word, “unexpected.” It was hit and miss when I first started out as a commercial model. But somehow, I managed to get into “StarStruck” and kept going. I’m really thankful.

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Shayne Sava (SS): It has been a journey full of risk-taking. But at the same time, I’m enjoying myself. I now realize that if you’re passionate about your craft, you will do it no matter how hard and demanding it is. You will put in the effort and energy. And it’s all worth it.

Allen Ansay (AA): I have learned a lot. At first, I didn’t know anything about acting; I didn’t have experience. But here, I learned how to act, starting from monologues. And now I have tried doing horror, comedy and having a screen partner. We learned how to sing, dance and be natural.

Lexi Gonzales (LG): It has been very heartwarming, fulfilling and overwhelming because I got into this not knowing what would happen. I’m happy and grateful because I have learned so much. And I’m sure I will never forget all that knowledge, which I can also apply in real life.

After taking on various tests, what would you say are your biggest strengths and weaknesses? What made you go, “Kaya ko pala ’yun?”

KD:  My strength is doing action scenes; I enjoyed them the most. But it was challenging for me to express vulnerability. I’m not an emotional person, so I had a difficult time crying in dramatic scenes. But I managed to pull it off in the last acting test. I can say I have improved before the show ended.

SS: I used to have a hard time crying, being vulnerable. But I ended up surprising myself, because I didn’t think I was capable of showing intense emotions.

What I’m working on is the tone of my voice. It’s quite shrill, so I try to modulate it. But I’m still young. Hopefully, my voice changes as I grow.

AA: My passion for the work.

LG: At first, our directors told me that I looked like I was always holding something back. Now, I can let go of my emotions freely.

My weakness, meanwhile, is that I tend to get discouraged when I find myself at the bottom, when I don’t get a lot of votes, or when I hear negative comments. Luckily, I also have the strength to always pull myself back up.

What was the biggest challenge for you, and how did you get through it?

KD: Self-doubt. Every test, I get this feeling that I wouldn’t be able to do it. Sometimes, your biggest enemy is yourself.

SS: It’s trying to overcome my fears and worries. I tend to overthink about not being able to do tasks and the possibility of getting eliminated. I question myself, “Kaya ko pa ba?” At the end of the day, I push forward and put my faith in God.

AA: In one of the tests with Ms Aiko Melendez, my director got disappointed in me because he knew I was faking my acting and emotions. But from then on, I tried doing things as I would naturally and not think too much about the script. I also learned how to just go with the flow. And miraculously, I got it!

LG: For me, it was trying to keep my cool when you’re face-to-face with your idol and other big stars. You have to be relaxed. Sometimes, I try not to look at Ms Cherie Gil’s eyes when were on the set.

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TAGS: 4 finalists, Allen Ansay, GMA-7, Kim de Leon, Lexi Gonzales, Shayne Sava, Starstruck
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