MANILA, JUNE 24, 2013 (ABS-CBN) Sarah Geronimo got her first contestant on “The Voice of the Philippines.” On Sunday’s episode of the TV talent search, 36-year-old rocker Junji Arias picked Geronimo over Broadway star Lea Salonga and rocker Bamboo Manalac.

All three coaches turned their red chairs for the music producer and former band member who performed Bon Jovi’s “I’ll Be There For You.”

Geronimo even approached the stage to give Arias a garland after her performance. She later explained that the gesture meant that she is a fan. “Tumagos talaga sa puso ko,” Geronimo said of Arias’ performance.

Only three contestants were picked by the coaches on Sunday’s episode. Apart from Arias, Salonga picked English teacher Sawsan Sammie Muhammad, who sang Alanis Morisette’s “Ironic,” while selected belt seller Corazon dela Cruz, who performed Asin’s “Usok.”

Those who failed to make the coaches turn their chairs were hunk singer Edward Bernosa, OFW Miriam Manalo and Abigail Asistio, who suffers from alopecia. – “The Voice of the Philippines,” June 16, 2013

'Voice PH' artist Lee Grane tops worldwide trends on Twitter by Miguel Dumaual, Posted at 06/23/2013 12:06 AM | Updated as of 06/23/2013 12:06 AM


MANILA -- Lee Grane, a 29-year-old professional singer from Makati City, became the No. 1 trending topic worldwide on Twitter Saturday night, after moving "The Voice of the Philippines" coaches Sarah Geronimo and Bamboo Mañalac to tears with her back-to-back performances for her Blind Auditions bid.

After convincing the two coaches to turn their chairs with her rendition of the iconic OPM song "Anak," Grane then performed the Sarah McLachlan hit "Angel" when asked by coach Lea Salonga if she can also sing an English song.

As Grane performed her second number, Salonga and coach Allan "" Pineda expressed regret over not turning their chairs to recruit the singer for their respective teams. Geronimo and Mañalac, meanwhile, were seen turning emotional as Grane finished her heart-wrenching rendition of the song.

Faced with a choice to join either Team Sarah or Team Bamboo, Grane eventually picked the latter after Mañalac thanked her for moving him, saying, "This is it, we belong together."


The Voice of the Philippines is a Filipino reality television singing competition on ABS-CBN.

It is based on the reality singing competition The Voice of Holland, which was originally created by Dutch television producer John de Mol as part of The Voice franchise.

The show is hosted by Toni Gonzaga, while Robi Domingo, and Alex Gonzaga serves as the show's V-Reporters or the social media correspondents.

Sarah Geronimo, Bamboo Mañalac, Lea Salonga, and serves as the four coaches and the judging panel of the show.

The show had a primer called Mic Test: The Voice of the Philippines Primer and was aired on June 9, 2013. The first season premiered on June 15, 2013.

It is the fourth national franchise in the Southeast Asian region after Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia.

The Voice is a reality television series that started from a format originating from the Netherlands named "The Voice of Holland".

The whole format features four coaches or judges searching for a batch of talented new artists, who could become the Philippines' new singing superstar.

The show's concept is indicated by its title: The 4 coaches don't judge the artists by their characteristics such as looks, personalities, stage presence or even dance moves — only of what they can give with their vocal ability.

It's with this concept that diversifies and differentiated The Voice from other known reality talent searches which airs in any known television station such as The X Factor franchise, the Got Talent franchise or even the veteran Idol franchise.

The lucky auditionees who have advanced would be split into four teams, which are coached/mentored by the 4 multi-talented coaches who in turn would collaborate with them and choose songs for their artists to perform.

There is a minimum of 16 years old of age preference yet beyond that limit there's no specific age range and anyone can audition; The coaches will turn their backs from the stage to facilitate an unbiased perception of the talent. If by any chance one of the coach likes what they hear, they would do a button-press which would allow their chair to turn around and face the performer for the first time, signifying that they would like to mentor them. If it happens that more than one does so, then the artist selects a coach. However, if no coach turns around then the artist is sent home.

There are four known different stages: Producers' auditions, Blind auditions, the Battle rounds and the Live shows.

On-ground and the Producers' auditions

As for any "The Voice" franchise the first stage is the producers' auditions, which are not shown on television. In the Voice of the Philippines, ABS-CBN headed by their regional partners nationwide and abroad are tasked to conduct the "Unseen Auditions." At this stage, there will be different judges that will use the power of media to conduct three types of screening; radio auditions, online auditions and on-ground auditions where the team will travel in and out of the country to find the best of the best to participate in the next set of auditions, "The Blind Auditions."

Blind auditions

The first televised stage is the blind auditions, where auditionees sing in front of the official coaches. All coaches will be sitting on a chair that is turned back from the stage. The coaches will first judge and only judge by the power, clarity, type and uniqueness of the artists singing prowess. If they like what they hear and want to mentor the artist for the next stage, they will push a button by their chair that would turn the chair around to face the stage for the first time and also see the artists for the first time after they sing to avoid any due bias according to characteristics and personality. If more than one coach turns around the power to pick goes to the artist whom will be given the chance to pick his/her coach of choice. If no coach turns his/her chair the auditioning artists journey ends. At the end, each of the coach will have 12 artists in his or her team who will be advancing to the next round.

The Battle rounds

The second stage, 'the Battle rounds', is where two artists are mentored and then developed by their respective coach. The coaches of the team will "dedicate themselves to developing their artists, giving them advice, and sharing the secrets of their success in the music industry". Every member of their team battle against another member from their team. They sing the same song simultaneously, while their coach decides who should continue in the competition. The coaches have to choose from the four individual “battles” to take artists to the live round.

Live shows

The final stage, dubbed as the 'Live shows', is where the surviving combatants perform in front of the coaches, audience and broadcast live. Each coach will be having four artists in their team to begin with and the artists will go head-to-head in the competition to win the public votes. These will determine which artist advances to the final eight. The remaining three artists' future in the show will be determined by the coaches, choosing who will progress.

The final eight artists will compete in a live broadcast. However, the coaches will have a 50/50 say with the audience and the public in deciding which artists move on to the 'final four' phase. In the latter, each coach will have one member who will continue. The final (the winner round) will be decided upon by the public vote. Throughout the final the coaches will frequently perform with their artists. The winner will be crowned The Voice of the Philippines.


The Voice of the Philippines' official logo. As for the Philippine version of the show, ABS-CBN acquired the rights of the franchise back in 2011 after the success of its US counterpart. The Philippines was then listed as one of the countries who bought the rights for the franchise as posted in the website of Talpa. The show was later confirmed by Laurenti Dyogi, a Filipino director who has had a notable success with reality shows like Pinoy Big Brother, Pinoy Dream Academy, and Junior MasterChef Pinoy Edition.

A teaser was shown during the commercial break of Sarah G. Live and Gandang Gabi Vice last December 30, 2012. A teaser, showing the recorded snippets of the blind auditions, was aired on May 15, 2013. Another trailer was posted in the show's official Facebook fan page on May 24, 2013, showing the coaches' bantering, rapport, and eagerness to fight over an auditionee.

A teaser revealed the premier date of the show was aired during the final performance night of the fourth season of Pilipinas Got Talent. A primer, dubbed as Mic Test: The Voice of the Philippines Primer, was also announced in the same night. It aired on June 9, 2013. The primer had a special participation of Danny O'Donoghue, The Script's frontman, who also currently sits as a coach in The Voice UK.


Auditions started on September 2012. Open Call Auditions were held on September 15, 2012 at Island Pacific Supermarket in Panorama City, Los Angeles, California and on September 16, 2012 at California's Great America Parkway in Santa Clara, California. The auditions were only open to people with Filipino ancestry in Southern California.

Radio screenings were also held on January 7 – 11, 2013 at various ABS-CBN Radio stations in key cities such as Metro Manila, Naga, Legazpi City, Baguio, Tacloban, Cebu City, Davao City, General Santos City, Zamboanga City, Cagayan de Oro City, Bacolod, Iloilo City, and Dagupan. Radio screenings were called

The Voice ng Radyo (The Voice of Radio), were in daily and weekly winners have the chance to directly go to the Blind auditions.

Auditions in key cities throughout the Philippines were announced on the last episode of Sarah G. Live, Sarah Geronimo's night variety show, on February 10, 2013. On the same night, the online auditions were also introduced which ran from February 9 to 19, 2013.[18]

Filming and set locations

The Voice of the Philippines' coaches (from left to right): Bamboo Mañalac, Sarah Geronimo, Lea Salonga, and sitting on their respective red chairs.

After the initial Producer's auditions, the 121 aspiring artists were then invited for the Blind auditions. The Blind auditions were filmed at Studio 2 of ABS-CBN Broadcasting Center in Quezon City and had ran from April 15, 2013 until April 18, 2013. The Newport Performing Arts Theater of Resorts World Manila in Newport City, Pasay City will serve as the official venue of the show for the Live shows.


The winner of The Voice of the Philippines is set to win an entertainment package from Sony Bravia, an Asian tour for two, a brand new car from Ford Philippines, a tax-free cash prize of 2 million pesos, and a recording contract from MCA Universal.


Initially rumors were circulating all over the web that Zsa Zsa Padilla was said to be part of the show as one of the four coaches. However, Luarenti Dyogi, the initial director of the show, denied this.

Ely Buendia, the former frontman of Eraserheads, was also reported to become one of the coaches but he denied the reports.

Martin Nievera, and Gary Valenciano, two of the mentor-judges of The X Factor Philippines, were also rumored to become part of the show as two of the four coaches. However, Gonzaga denied the reports, “I know kuya Gary and Martin did The X Factor so they will definitely not be part of the choices 'cause they already did the X-factor. The Voice is definitely going to be very different in approach [from The X Factor].”

After Toni Gonzaga was announced as the host of the show, Gonzaga announced that the coaches' line up will be broken down to a series of official announcements and was termed by Gonzaga as "the best of the best". The coaches were formally introduced in a press conference held in ABS-CBN on April 12, 2013 after all were introduced in television promotions, and through official press statements given by the network.

"The world knows that Filipinos are the best singers in the world so I think the country really deserves The Voice of the Philippines. With the line-up of coaches that the show has, it’s going to be of international standards.”

—Philibert Braat, the international consultant of The Voice in Asia.

The line up of the coaches has received some positive views coming mostly from the members of the Philippine press. One writer from Malaya Business Insight commented that the show has an interesting set of mentors. Joseph R. Atilano of the Philippine Daily Inquirer was even amazed and was surreal for the line-up of the coaches. For the four's caliber in their respective genre, he described that the show will surely be a different one.

Sarah Geronimo

Sarah Geronimo, dubbed as "The voice that captured our hearts", was announced on February 6, 2013 as the first official coach.

On February 6, 2013, singer and talk show host Sarah Geronimo was announced as the first coach on The Voice of the Philippines. At the same time, the network announced that her weekly show Sarah G. Live, was due to air its final episode on Sunday, February 10.

ABS-CBN Corporate Communications head Bong R. Osorio said, "Sarah Geronimo moves on to fulfill other commitments."

He added that "Sarah is also busy filming her upcoming Star Cinema movie with John Lloyd Cruz, and is set to go on a Sarah G concert worldwide".

Geronimo admitted in an interview that she felt intimidated with the three other coaches due much possibly to their caliber in each of their genres. Geronimo further stated that she will just focus on why she became part of the show. " It's a chance to be part of someone's journey towards pursuing his or her dream," the young singer-actress said. She furthered added that, with her also a product of a singing search, she believes that she can help the artists who will become part of her team. She also said that she will be open to the views and the preferences of her team.

Bamboo Mañalac

Bamboo Mañalac, dubbed as "The voice that rocked our world," was the second coach to be confirmed on February 14, 2013.

On February 10, 2013, during an appearance on the last episode of Sarah G. Live, Bamboo Mañalac hinted that he would be working with the talk show host after they both finished performing a production number together.

On February 14, 2013, ABS-CBN aired a promotional plug during the airtime of the pre-primetime television drama Kahit Konting Pagtingin, confirming Bamboo Mañalac's stint in the show as coach and judge.

Mañalac was the former frontman of Rivermaya from 1994 until 1998, and later with Bamboo from 2002 until it got disband in 2011.

In an interview made by ABS-CBN News, Mañalac provided a statement regarding his stint on the show, "I'm ready to be a coach. There's a time for everything and this is it." When asked on what kind of artist will he would like to coach, he said, “I’ve been listening to rock for a long time but I also listen to other genres from rock to pop to folk to everything. I want someone who is open to all kinds of music; someone who is willing to listen and willing to learn.”

Lea Salonga

Lea Salonga, dubbed by the show as "The voice that conquered the world," was the third coach confirmed in the show on February 19, 2013.

On February 17, 2013, ABS-CBN aired a plug teaser for the third coach. The coach, who is a female, was tagged as "The voice that conquered the world." The third coach was rumored to be Lea Salonga, a world renowned theater actress who had appeared in Miss Saigon, Les Misérables on Broadway, and was named a Disney Legend in 2011 for her work with Disney on Aladdin, and Mulan movies. The teaser strongly resembles Salonga. Salonga was also been rumored to host the show last October 2012, but was later debunked since Toni Gonzaga was announced as the host along with the show's media correspondent, Robi Domingo.

On the night of February 19, 2013, Lea Salonga confirmed her stint as an official coach in the show via her official Twitter account. In the same night, ABS-CBN later confirmed Salonga's role on the show.

“I was very interested in ‘The Voice’s’ format, having seen the show in the US and really enjoying it. I’m a fan,” Salonga told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in an interview. As Salonga had some commitments locally and abroad, ABS-CBN was able to do some adjustments and finalize her work schedule in order to include her job in the local version of The Voice.

On March 7, 2013, was confirmed as the last coach of the show. He is dubbed as The voice that ruled the worldwide music chart.

After Salonga's confirmation, there has been strong rumors that the fourth coach will be Allan Pineda who is more popularly known as is a Filipino-American rapper and member of the Grammy Award-winning group The Black Eyed Peas. During an interview made by The Huffington Post on 2012, stated that he has plans on launching his own talent show in the Philippines. "I've been working myself up to do it because I'm not used to being on TV everyday... I've been offered a show for next year," he revealed.

On March 1, 2013, ABS-CBN has confirmed that they are in the final stages of negotiating with the management of to become its fourth and last official coach of the show.

On March 7, 2013, it was announced through ABS-CBN's entertainment website, Push, that will sit as the fourth coach. On an article posted in the network's official website dated March 20, 2013, is slated to do the initial promotional plug with TFC London and is scheduled to arrive in Manila by April to meet and work with the three other coaches and the rest of the show's team. His promotional television plug was aired on March 27, 2013 right after TV Patrol. He was dubbed as The voice that ruled the worldwide music chart.

In an interview made by ABS-CBN News, Apl admitted that it was, Pineda's friend and co-member in The Black Eyed Peas, that encouraged him to accept the coaching stint in The Voice of the Philippines. is also a coach on The Voice UK along with Danny O'Donoghue, Tom Jones, and Jessie J.

Apl further told that press that he will be truthful on coaching his artists, as well giving them constructive criticisms. Apl will also share his life experiences, what he has been through the music industry, and how hard it is to fulfill and reach it.

Main host

Rumors had been circulating that Toni Gonzaga and Robi Domingo, and even Lea Salonga are said to host the show.

However, all of these rumors are debunked as the production team stated that there were still no confirmed hosts for the reality show.

On February 8, 2013, after months of speculations, Toni Gonzaga was confirmed to host the franchise. It was announced on Gonzaga's talk show, The Buzz.

Gonzaga said she thinks that the show is good for her, as this will push her to become more a good singer. “This will inspire me to improve and develop myself when it comes to the singing department. Of course I will learn a lot from the coaches, from the singers and this will help me also hone my skills,” she said.

On asked what makes the show different from the other shows, she said, “This one has no theme. I think one of the best asset of this program is that we will not mold the singers, we will not mold them into something or someone that is not their personality. We will showcase their talent and their abilities according to what they can do and what they can give. They can choose their songs, they can choose their outfits. Everything will be based on their own choice. That will good because as you see in the other reality shows they mold the singers that sometimes make them not comfortable. That is why in this show, we chose to were they are comfortable and where they think they can shine,” she explained.

Social media correspondents

Gonzaga confirmed that she will be joined by Robi Domingo as the show's media correspondent. Incidentally, this marks Gonzaga and Domingo's third time to work together after Pinoy Big Brother: Unlimited and Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition 4 which were also under the unit of Director Lauren Dyogi.

On April 16, 2013, Alex Gonzaga, the younger sister of Toni Gonzaga, was revealed to join the show, teaming up with Robi Domingo as V-Repoters or as the show's social media correspondents.



Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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