POKWANG AND JAMIE RIVERA WELCOME Us GIRLS TO THEIR HOMES

MANILA, AUGUST 11, 2011 (STAR)
Hardwork and perseverance have paid off for Pokwang (left), a former overseas worker who started out in showbiz almost seven years ago. Proof of her success is her newly furnished dream house based in Antipolo.

Join Us Girls’ Angel Aquino, Chesca Garcia-Kramer and Iya Villania as they visit the private abode of the cheerful Happy Yipee Yehey! host tonight.

The comedienne also has a Buddha collection, which is just as impressive as her career. Have her dazzling Buddha items contributed to her triumph in showbiz?

Us Girls will also take you to Jamie Rivera’s (photo) home. Like Pokwang, the inspirational diva will display her unusual pool of bread-shaped items.

Meanwhile, PGT Season 2 grand winner Marcelito Pomoy will sing for the Fab Three with his exceptional doble-oke singing style.

Umagang Kay Ganda anchors Venus Raj and Andrei Felix will also teach Iya to do the Dougie Dance.

Us Girls airs tonight at 9:30 on Studio 23.

FROM PEP.PH/NEWS

Pokwang moves to her P30-million abode in Antipolo

Rose Garcia Sunday, May 8, 2011 02:04 AM

May bagong bahay na naman si Pokwang na ipapa-bless niya ngayong Mayo.

Nagpatayo si Pokwang ng four-storey house sa Summer Hills sa Antipolo.

May walong kuwarto raw ito.

At umabot daw sa P30 million ang halaga ng bagong bahay na ipinagawa niya.

"Nakalipat na ako. Kaya lang, hindi pa gawa yung prayer room. Yun ang pinaka-importante," banggit niya sa PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal).

May room din daw para sa namayapang anak ni Pokwang.

"Meron siyang sariling kuwarto. Yung anak kong angel.

"Yung mga dati niyang gamit, wala na. Pero yung mga pictures niya at mga collection ko ng mga angels, mga paintings, nandoon."

Ang kapatid muna raw ni Pokwang ang nakatira sa dati niyang bahay sa Antipolo rin.

Pinatira muna raw niya ang kapatid duon kesa sa umupa pa ang mga ito.

Pero bakit nga ba niya naisipang magpatayong muli ng bahay?

"Kasi yung una kong nabili, medyo kaliitan. So, yung mga gamit ko, mga outfit ko, hindi na magkasya.

"At saka, hindi ako makapag-accommodate ng mga kamag-anak kong umuuwi," paliwanag ng komedyana.

Dream house na ba niya ito?

"Malamang ito na ang dream house ko dahil marami akong maa-accommodate na friends," sagot niya.

Biro ng PEP kay Pokwang, tila mas mahihirapan pa siyang makahanap ng lalaking mamahalin dahil sa bahay pa lang na naipatayo niya ay mahihirapan nang mapantayan ito.

Pero kailangan nga bang pantayan ng lalaking mapupusuan niya ang mga ari-arian niya?

"Ang importante lang naman, mahalin niya ako habambuhay at kasama ko siya sa pagtanda."

Kung sakali, papapirmahin ba niya ng pre-nuptial agreement ang lalaki?

"Oo, kasi kailangan ko muna sigurong siguraduhin ang kalagayan ng anak ko," seryosong sagot ng komedyante.

FROM SHOWBIZPINOY.COM

[PHOTO - This is the stylish façade of the new house. Jamie and family still reside in the old house, just a few blocks away from this one. “Initially kasi, office yun, dito talaga kami titira. Kasi doon, laging maraming tao, walang privacy minsan. Kaso, hindi kami makalipat-lipat, e. Pero madals, dito na kami nage-entertain ng guests.”]

Jamie Rivera's singing career has taken many for- ms over the last 20 years. She was a pop sensation in the 1980s. She voiced Kim's misery in the long-playing international musical, Miss Saigon, in the 90s. At the start of the new millennium, she metamorphosed into a gospel-singing sweetheart bearing the title Inspirational Diva.

For 10 years now, Jamie (Mary Jane Mendoza in real life) has been married to JB Mendoza, a doctor of medicine who has turned builder-contractor. They have a nine-year-old daughter, Reine.

Singing has been Jamie's great love for as long as she can remember. She trained with the Metropolitan Theater Chorus in 1984. The following year, aiming for a solo career, she joined G.A.Yupangco's Yamaha Music Mate Girls, a talent search. She was one of the winners. Shortly after becoming a Music Mate Girl, Jamie toured the country and performed in concerts while finishing her economics degree at the University of Santo Tomas .

The first recording company that signed her up was OctoArts. “I was lucky to be with them,” Jamie says, “kasi peak nila yun, e. So maganda yung naging handling sa akin ng Octo.”

In 1990, she left for London to take over Lea Salonga's lead role in Miss Saigon. Jamie played Kim until 1993.

Back in the country, Jamie did two bestselling pop albums, Once More (1997) and Feels So Right (1999), as well as a bestselling Christmas album, Sa Araw Ng Pasko (1998), under Star Records.

The year 2000 was the time she was given the label Inspirational Diva. It was the time she was tasked to sing “The Jubilee Song” in celebration of the Catholic Church's jubilee year. From that time on, she has become primarily involved in church music.

Jamie loves the title, but admits, too, that it limits both her repertoire and her income.

“Hindi mo naman matatanggal na yun, e,” she says of her tag. “Saka ayoko ding tanggalin. Kaya lang, we're trying to deviate from it a little because apektado yung bookings ko. Akala ng mga tao, puro ganoon lang ang kinakanta ko, na hindi na ako kumakanta ng pop.

“So, ang bookings ko puro fund-raising, puro simbahan, puro events for a cause, puro ganoon. E, siyempre, gusto rin ng mga corporate events… Siyempre kailangan natin yun, di ba? Image is one thing, but I have to eat, di ba?”

That's why the Inspirational Diva has come up with a new album, Jamie Rivera At Her Best, a compilation of her past hits. “All the songs are rearranged,” she explains. The album includes hit songs such as “I've Fallen for You,” “Mahal Naman Kita,” and “People Alone.”

Jamie gives YES! an exclusive peek at the new three-story, four-bedroom home that her husband built some three years ago. She and her family, however, are still not sure when they will move in.

The house, in a quiet Quezon City neighborhood, has this sparse but elegant-looking living room featuring two Barcelona chairs. Jamie's minimalist approach in decorating her home stems from her dislike for cluttered spaces.

“Hindi kasi kami naniniwala [ng asawa ko] sa yung pupunuin mong masyado?” she says. “Ayoko ng ganoon. Hirap linisin, e.”

Adjacent to the living room is a grand foyer.

With its huge glass windows, the living room creates a charmingly spacious and elevated atmosphere. “May ilaw lahat sa labas ng windows,” Jamie explains. “Binubuksan namin pag gabi para hinid kami nakikita sa labas ng mga kapitbahay.”

Designed after the Shangri-La Hotel lobby, the first floor of Jamie's home will soon have a grand piano. However, Jamie, who not only sings but also writes the lyrics of her songs, admits that playing the piano is not her cup of tea.

“I can read notes,” she smiles. “Kaya lang, mabagal, kasi hindi ako nakapagdiretso ng piano lessons ko before. Nag-stop ako. On most of my songs, I collaborated. Hirap ako sa musicality. Pero most of the lyrics, ako yun.”

With its huge narra cabinets, this bathroom in the awards room on the second floor is simple yet classic.

The first floor basically sums up how very hotel-like Jamie's home is: “Gusto kasi namin ito, parang bahay-bakasyunan namin. Parang ganoon. Yung para lang enjoy ka, ganoon.” Proudly, Jamie adds: “Asawa ko nag-design nito. Pati mga furniture, mga cabinets, gawa niya yan. Sila-sila lang ng mga tao niya.”

The stairs with wooden and wrought-iron banisters are another attraction in the house. The other attractions include a rehearsal room and a spa in the basement, a massive spotless kitchen, and the attic.

The dining area is separated from the living room by intricately designed wooden sliding doors. Its main attraction is this slick four-seater glass table that her husband designed specifically for this house.

On the second floor, in what looks like a balcony overlooking the vastness of the living room, one can take note of the ingeniously crafted wrought-iron banister. On the first floor, Jamie stands on a floral-designed parquet made of mahogany.

Jamie's awards room is located on the second floor of the house. She's sitting on a customized side table made of narra.

“Galing yan sa puno namin sa [Pulilan] Bulacan,” says Jamie of the table. “Bumagyo nang malakas dati, natumba. Ginawang ganyan ng asawa ko. May ka-partner pa yan. Nandoon yata sa basement.”

Also shown, with its huge narra tray, are the purple candles given by Kris Aquino.

The numerous awards Jamie has won as a recording artist include a gold record for her album Once More (1997), a platinum for Sa Araw Ng Pasko (1998), and another gold for Feels So Right (1999).

Jamie has been collecting spoons and forks since the 1990s. “All the countries that I've been to, kumokolekta ako ng spoons,” she says. She now has 37 of them neatly kept in a glass cabinet inside the master bedroom.

Jamie's knickknacks include miniatures of famous international tourist sights such as the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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