Nov 11
BEA ALONZO: AT THE CROSSROADS by Butch Macaro  |  Posted in Articles  |  on Fri, Nov 11, 2005

Let us now star talking about the newcomers. Especially about a young actress who just turned 18. She is just one of the tryros, the novices, the young wannabees who are trying to make it in show business. But before that, let us make a passing mention of the stars who were there ahead of her, the veteran actors and actresses who have made their dent in Philippine cinema and are still around today. Let them be the paragons of professionalism for the new and young thespians among us, especially for Bea Alonso.

These models of acting greats include the surviving ones who are still with us today and those that went ahead of them. We must mention the name of Carmen Rosales and Rogelio dela Rosa and the rest of the older generation of stars who dominated the Philippine film industry before, during and after World War II. Most of them had left the world of make-believe to join their creators. The rest had gone away to live their lives in foreign countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia or those Old World European countries. Though most of them had chosen to remain in their beloved Philippines .

The senior stars still with us are led by veterans Eddie Garcia, Gloria Romero and Comedy King Dolphy. These three senior stars began their careers with Sampaguita Pictures, Incorporated, owned and managed by the late Dr. Jose R. Perez. Most of the surviving movie stars of the decade, including those who are no longer active in the film industry, were once the leadings stars of Sampaguita Pictures, LVN Pictures and Premier Productions. Undoubtedly, two generations in Philippine films have brought us actors and actresses in the mold of the former Philippine President Joseph Ejercito Estrada, Susan Roces, Amalia Fuentes, Caridad Sanchez, Perla Bautista, Boots Anson Roa, Celia Rodriguez, Ronaldo Valdez, Dante Rivero, Ramon Zamora, actions greats like Tony Ferrer, Roberto Gonzales, Bernard Bonnin, and many others.

A younger group will inlude Vilma Santos, Nora Aunor, Christopher de Leon, Gina Alajar, Mark Gil, Michael de Mesa, Jaclyn Jose, Lorna Tolentino, Rudy Fernandez, Philip Salvador, Johnny Delgado, Ramon ‘Bong’ Revilla, Sharon Cuneta, Maricel Soriano, Sandy Andolong, Angel Aquino, Cesar Montano, Edu Manzano, Jean Garcia, Kris Aquino, Eula Valdez, Lito Legaspi, Kier Legaspi, Dawn Zulueta, Richard Gomez , Vic Sotto and the rest that escaped my memory.

But who are the new stars now on the horizon. They are led by Claudine Barretto, Judy Ann Santos, Piolo Pascual, Yul Servo, John Loyd Cruz, Dennis Trillo, Aleck Bovick, Ara Mina, Vina Morales, Maui Taylor, Diana Zubiri, Sunshine Dizon, Francine Prieto, Angel Locsin, Richard Gutierrez, Regine Velasquez, Jericho Rosalels, Polo Ravales, Paolo Contis, Dingdong Dantes, Maureen Larrazabal, Izza Calzado, Cogie Domingo, Ogie Alcasid, Michaell V and the rest of new faces who may serve as threats to these more established younger stars.

This article will concentrate and give kudos to a particular newcomer who seems too determined to make a name for herself in the competitive world of show business. She is just one of so many tyros, newcomers, novices and trying hards. She is lumped together with those we call beginners, fresh new talents expected to produce commendable performances, credible social backgrounds and acceptable protocols and norms. They are young stars the fanatics will swoon over. The competition is keen, demanding and grueling and everyone must be sharp and dedicated, fully concentrated on their craft. That is what being groomed and prepared for stardom really means. The competition is formidable. In the wink of an eye, another thespian can take his/her place of prominence in the hierarchy of upcoming superstars.

The Philippines is a country believed to be favored by God who showered our young men and women with multiple talents and unquestionable abilities in the entertainment field. Singing and dancing are inborn talents of Pilipinos. Anywhere you go, you will hear people of all sizes and ages singing the latest hit songs. Boys and girls for want of a bigger and comfortable space to practice their wares take to the street and vacant lots to practice dance steps dreaming of dancing or singing their way to the TV screen.

Hundreds of young people compete in the race to stardom but only few are chosen and are given the chance to harness their talents. Few are chosen for the most elusive dream of being in the limelight.

Bea Alonzo is one newcomer who caught my fancy. To me, she is the epitome of a beautiful woman with close resemblance to Shirley Moreno, a contract star of Sampaguita Pictures in the late 60’s. Expressive eyes and enchanting smiles are the plus factors of Bea Alonzo. She just turned 18 a few weeks ago and was featured in her TV special on channel 2 last October 29 right after the Pinoy Big Brother. Directed by Mr. Johnny Manahan, the special was filled with big surprises meticulously prepared by the special projects division of Channel 2. Bea was seen dancing and singing which was typical during the Sampaguita days, a way of building their new stars being launched for stardom. Veteran star Gloria Romero and most of the Sampaguita contract stars underwent this kind of star launching during their prime.

Bea was launched as a certified lady last October 17 during her debut. Bea chose to do away with a grand celebration with cotillion and 18 roses in a five-star hotel’s grand ballroom. She opted for a different celebration through which she can touch the lives of other people specially her fans. Bea explained she is a bit anti-social and didn’t plan for a grand ball at all. She preferred to share her joy with the poor children who were with her to enjoy and share her birthday joys. At her young age, she justified that she considers this au unforgettable accomplishment that will make her tremendously happy.

Now that she is a lady, what changes shall we expect of her? Bea shyly confessed that there will be no great changes in her except that she wants to continue her study. She hopes to find time to go to school in between her busy schedule in TV appearances and film assignments. Now that she is 18, Bea is ready to entertain suitors and to have dates without chaperon. Even before her debut, Bea had suitors but she did not take them seriously because school and her career were her priority. Will that mean Bea will now be seriously entertaining her admirers? Bea explains she will not give special attention to her admirers although she can now go out on date without chaperon, after all she is now an adult and feels she can take care of herself.

Bea is putting more energy, attention and concentration on her career and studies and with her busy schedules one may doubt the extra time she can afford for her admirers. They may all take a backseat if this will affect her studies and career. Time and again, there were movie stars before her, who fell in love in the middle of a budding career and their busy schedules proved a threat to their relationship. One has to choose, and choosing love instead of a movie career will prove despairing. Bea is aware of this and she promised herself to give more time and attention on her career. She is not giving up a brighter promise of a budding movie career. Bea is aware that her career as movie star is picking up. She is aware that marriage will greatly affect her bid for stardom and is convinced showbiz marriages often end up in incompatibility and professional jealousy.

Bea is aware of the threatening demand of stardom and she will not allow anyone or anything to hamper her dreams of achieving greatness in the field of acting. Everything seem to be in her favor.

In the 2 nd Golden Screen( for TV) Awards of the Entertainment Press Society (EMPRESS), Bea was one of the contenders in the outstanding lead actress performance for Ikaw ang Lahat sa Akin (ABS-CBN) together with Claudine Barretto for the same series; Sunshine Dizon for Engkantadia (GMA), Karylle for Love To Love-Sweet Exchange (GMA) ; Angel Locsin for Mulawin (GMA) and Regine Velasquez for Forever In My Heart (GMA). With this recognition of her acting ability, I doubt she will surrender to the dictates of her heart and give up a promising career in show business.