BACKROOM LAUNCHES nine new artists who are out to make their mark in show business. The Backroom 9 boys and girls are Ian Batherson, Benj Bolivar,Carlo Sawit, Nikita McElroy, PJ Go, Avery Paraiso, Kayesha Chua, Maui Lumba and Bon Jovi Osorio.
Ian Batherson, lumabas na siya sa fifth season of Starstruck and Survivor Philippines: Celebrity Showdown. Gusto nitong i-improve ang kanyang Tagalog and make himself a better performer. “I’m getting a little bit derecho kapag nagsasalita pero I still have a long way to go, and that’s the beauty of it. I want to grow, to be able to challenge myself as an actor,” he said.
Benj Bolivar, a former aspiring varsity athlete for the University of the Philippines – Diliman Men’s basketball team, was the first runner-up in the Mossimo Bikini Summit of 2010. Nakagawa na rin rito ng commercials for Lucky Me, Bingo and Smart. Marami pa siyang gustong patunayan sa kanyang sarili. “Actually, gusto ko i-try lahat. Pero right now, gusto kong umarte kasi ‘yung mom ko mahilig sa mga teleserye. Parang masaya siyang gawin at fulfilling,” sabi niya.
Carlo Sawit is 24, and graduate of Marketing Management from De La Salle University. Kremil–S ang pinakabago niyang commercial with Boy Abunda. He was being offered to be part of Backroom 9. Sa bago niyang career challenge, sabi nito, I’m happy acting, I’m happy feeling things, doing a role, feeling exactly what the character feels. For me, it’s like traveling, it’s an adventure.”
Nikita McElroy, 18, stands 5’8” na taga-Davao, may lahing French and Black American. Isa siyang modelo at naging finalist in Star Factor. Her most recent TVC appearance was in Kris Aquino’s “Rubadango” commercial. Lahat gusto niyang subukan. “Hangga’t kaya ko, kung puwede lahat, pero kung isa lang, siguro hosting kasi talkative ako,” sabi niya.
PJ Go, 22 year old, third year of a Marketing Management course at the University of the East. Tumigil muna sa pag-aaral dahil gusto nitong i-pursue ang modeling and acting career. Rumampa na siya sa Fashion Week for brands like Bench and designers like Rusty Lopez.Nakapag-acting workshop na rin siya and making himself available for go-sees. Umaasa ang binatang ito sa bagong career na papasukan niya. “Nasa ‘yo ‘yun kung magtatagumpay ka sa gusto mo. Kapag pinaghirapan mo ang isang bagay, makukuha mo naman, kahit na ano ang pinagdaanan mo sa buhay,” determinado turan ni PJ.
18-year-old model-turned actor Avery Paraiso, won the circle of 10 model search in 2009. Matagal na niyang pangarap maging parte ng showbiz since he was in high school. He considers his hair an advantage because it has won him roles in commercial before. “Sabi sa akin dati ng isang caster, kaya raw ako nakuha is dahil sa buhok ko, ‘yun daw ‘yung character na gusto nila,” wika nito. Willing naman siya to cut it if necessary, or trim it at least, in pursuit of his goal of becoming a dramatic actor.
Kayesha Chua is the typical “beauty and brain” type of girl. Kaka-graduate (Class of 2013) lang sa University of Santo Tomas, with a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management (cum laude). The 5’7” tall model idolizes Bea Alonzo. “Kasi, nag-evolve ‘yung career path niya. Sobrang ganda ng flow ng path niya as an actress. Sobrang versatile niya, ang galing niyang umarte, sobrang natural lang, tapos ang elegant niya pang tignan,” papuring sambit ng modelo.
Maui Lumba, is a classmate and friend of Kayesha Chua from UST. He is also basketball player and followed in the footstep of his father, who also used to be a model and a contemporary of the likes of Edu Manzano and Christopher de Leon. Kahit wala siyang background sa acting, he’s hopeful that with Backroom’s help and being surrounded by people who know the business, he and the others have a good chance of making it. “I’m really excited what is about to happen. Having no background in acting, the workshop (with Laurice Guillen) were tough, and the business has a lot of complications, but I think we can handle it,” he said.
Bon Jovi Osorio was named after famous singer but the 22 year-old is looking to build a career as an actor. He came to Backroom a few years back but decided to return to the US where he finished his studies. Now that he’s done, he is ready to seek his fortune in showbiz and is glad to be given a second chance to be part of this group. “The Backroom 9 is like my second family. ‘Yung pamilya ko nasa States so I really do feel that this (group) is my family,” say niya.
by Eddie Littlefield