Vina Morales ready for love again
Although she has remained friends with former partner Cedric Lee for the sake of their daughter Ceana, there is a new man in her life.
But Vina was tightlipped about his identity during a recent visit to the Inquirer offices in Makati City. “I still have to figure out where this is headed,” she said cautiously.
She admitted that she had learned a lot from her time with Cedric. “I used to push until I got what I wanted, unmindful of the complications.” (Cedric was in the process of getting his marriage annulled when he and Vina met.) Now she is a little less controlling of the situation. “If God wants me to end up with this man, it will happen.”
While on the subject of relationships, Vina said she was pleased that her sister, actress Shaina Magdayao, had reconciled with actor John Lloyd Cruz.
“Shaina had a hard time with all the controversies surrounding them,” said Vina. “I see that they’re really trying to work things out now. At 21, Shaina is more mature than I was at that age. She also has the family’s full support.”
During the hourlong chat, Vina discussed how excited she was about her latest project, the local production of the musical “Rock of Ages.” The Atlantis Productions presentation runs from June 15 to July 5 at the Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium of RCBC Plaza in Makati City.
Did you audition for “Rock of Ages?”
I had to. I’ve been working in this business for years, but musical theater never crossed my mind until I got an invitation from Atlantis once to audition for an earlier production. I chickened out of that one. Then came an e-mail invitation to audition for “Rock of Ages.” This time I went.
I came prepared and sang two songs, one of which was “High Enough.” I also read from the script for Direk Chari (Arespacochaga), who was there.
I can relate to my character, Sherrie—a small-town girl who comes to the city to pursue her dreams. Like her, I’m probinsyana. I’m from Bogo, Cebu. I came to Manila because I wanted to be an actress and a singer. I know how Sherrie feels, how driven she is.
Yes, he plays the aspiring rocker Drew, who falls in love with Sherrie. I’ve worked with him on “ASAP.” We also used to do provincial shows together. We haven’t tackled the script yet, but we’ll be rehearsing every day so we can work on our chemistry.
Do you have a love scene?
I know that I have a kissing scene. Sherrie is a stripper, so I’ll have several sexy dance routines. I have work to do to get back in shape.
How about a sexy scene with Mig Ayesa?
That’s a surprise for the audience. We’re all excited to meet Mig. He’s already doing “Rock” in New York as Stacee Jaxx, so he knows this by heart.
What took you so long to try theater?
I was scared. I didn’t think I could do it. There’s no take-two in theater. I have such high regard for theater performers.
We’ll be doing 20 shows without alternates. I’m still wondering if I can survive that. But I’ll be working with Jett Pangan, Calvin Millado, Aiza Seguerra and Jinky Llamanzares. I know I’ll learn a lot from them and from Atlantis.
How are you preparing for the show?
(Vina flew to LA shortly after this interview to perform with Erik Santos, Yeng Constantino and Jovit Baldovino in a mini-concert for The Filipino Channel.)
From LA, I’m taking a side trip to Fresno, where “Rock” will be running for two nights.
What else would you like to do in theater?
I don’t know … “Chicago” would be good, but I don’t know if it’s ever coming to Manila. I also like “Wicked,” but for now, I’m focused on “Rock of Ages.”
Did the ’80s talent show “That’s Entertainment” prepare you for theater in any way?
It trained me in many ways. I’ve also worked with a lot of top choreographers and dance groups, like Geleen Eugenio, the Bayanihan, Douglas Nierras’ Power Dance, and G4. They will tell you that when I train, I really focus.
How much time are you devoting to “Rock”?
Three months. I had to turn down several projects because of this. We will be rehearsing every day. I can’t do a teleserye, or even work out of town. It’s all worth it, though. With Mig Ayesa, my God! I’ve not met him; I’m very excited.
Will your daughter watch the show?
She can’t; she’s still a minor and I play a stripper.
How do you balance work and motherhood?
Two words: Time management. I’ve mastered it. Ceana is my priority, followed by my career, then the family business. Thank heavens for Face Time and Skype—I get to talk with Ceana even when I’m abroad.
Do you see her following in your footsteps?
She’s into music like I was at her age. Her teacher once told me, “Vina, ang ingay na ng anak mo.” Ceana’s voice is very powerful. She could be a singer. I wouldn’t stop her, just not now. I want her childhood to be normal.
How do you handle intrigues?
You have to be made of steel not to get affected. I try as much as possible not to react or get hurt.
Do you have a Twitter account?
I do: @lovevinamorales, but someone handles it for me. I pass on to her what I want to tweet. She filters it for me. I use technology to my advantage. With Twitter I’m able to promote my shows and projects, and reach out to my fans.