Good night, Cherie

The author (second from left) with her mom, Ligaya Salonga, Bobby Garcia, Cherie and Rony Rogoff

The author (second from left) with her mom, Ligaya Salonga, Bobby Garcia, Cherie and Rony Rogoff —PHOTO COURTESY OF BOBBY GARCIA/CONTRIBUTOR

Truly, there was no one like her. A singular talent. Our favorite contrabida. Never two-dimensional, never boring, never second-rate or trying hard, always a bright light wherever she went, passionate with the work, generous with her gifts, and kind … always kind … to people she loved.

She never hesitated to tell you if she loved you and respected you. She would offer herself to be your refuge … your cook … she would tell the story of a couch she ordered but couldn’t fit through her door (online shopping is hard, she said) … how you were welcome at her home, even if things weren’t totally set up right yet.

Gerard and I first met her when she hosted a lunchtime television show. She must’ve been in her late teens or early 20s. This was when she taught us how to properly say her surname, Eigenmann … the time we looked into her eyes and saw a kind, sweet soul.

I will forever regret not getting to see her play Maria Callas in “Master Class.” From what I heard she was a tour de force. Can’t say I was surprised, because it’s her. She had such a strong command of the stage.

Favorite memory

One favorite memory will be of meeting her at a bar in New York City … When I arrived, she was already there, elegantly seated holding a glass of Prosecco, a blush on her cheeks and a smile on her lips. Another is seeing how she and daughter Bianca matched one another in a battle of wills (Bianca must’ve been about 10 years old at the time … who would win was anybody’s guess). And finally, getting to hear her sing. Thank goodness “Boy I Love You” is preserved on YouTube.

When I first heard the news of her passing, a song from the Disney film “The Princess and the Frog” popped into my head, an excerpt of which follows:

Look how she lights up the sky

Ma Belle Evangeline

So far above me yet I

Know her heart belongs to only me

Je t’adore, Je t’aime Evangeline

You’re my queen of the night

So still

So bright

That someone as beautiful as she

Could love someone like me

Love always finds a way it’s true!

And I love you, Evangeline

Good night, Evangeline Rose Gil Eigenmann, our beloved Cherie. To her family, loved ones, colleagues and fans, we send our deepest and sincerest condolences.

Bring on the theories!

Before going any further, allow me to express my thanks to everyone that tuned into “Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin” on HBO Go and HBO Max! The show has received some nice reviews, and many of my friends who have settled into watching have been enjoying it.

Today, another two episodes will drop bringing the grand total to seven that will be available to binge. This season will have 10 in total.And of course, as in the original series, the theories for who our mysterious A is are starting to come in!

Among friends in my group, we have a small chat where whatever theories the girls have come up with are freely shared. As for me, I just read. It’s actually fun to just read and spoil nothing about what’s about to happen next! Here’s how the chat kind of goes:

Friend 1: Oh my God, I just finished … Lea, your daughter (Mouse, played by Malia Pyles) is stressing me out! What is she doing? And what’s with the stuff in that box?

Friend 2: Who do you think A is? The scene with that liar and the stairs! HOLY CRAP!

Friend 3: What happened to that guy? Who is that guy? How does he fit into the story? Why did A do that?

Lea: (happily sipping on a beverage, laughing by herself)

The theories will, I’m sure, continue to fly as we keep progressing into the season. Which means more reading for me!

Not going to lie though, the show is hella creepy. Yes, I do have the scripts and many of the scenes on the pages are imprinted in my head, but I never know what the finished product will look like until I sit down to screen the episodes. My goodness, they are fantastic. And as I normally do, I yell expletives at the TV.

We are ecstatic that finally, people are able to see what we were working on for so many months. There is widespread excitement as well as hope that the show is being received well.

So, what are your theories? Is there someone who’s been making your inner detective’s senses tingle? Where do you think the story is headed? Who’s got the biggest secrets, and how will they be uncovered? Keep watching to find out!

“Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin” continues streaming on HBO Go in Asia and HBO Max in the US. Episodes drop every Thursday.