#PalakasinangOPM: Girl Power (Pocket Performances)

March 14, 2015 – It’s been a month since OPM (Organisasyon ng mga Pilipinong Mang-aawit) rocked the Bonifacio Highstreet Ampitheater with a hefty lineup of solo acts and successfully pulled off collaborations. But before the 8 p.m. show, there was a series of pocket performances that were actually just as awesome.

OPM Pocket Performances

I decided to swing by a little earlier to get the feel of the event and catch some the afternoon sets. I was fortunate enough to witness four powerhouse ladies perform (hence the title Girl Power). Each gifted with their unique vocal prowess and sound, they actually have a few things in common – they’re all singers, songwriters, and instrumentalists!

Reverb Manila OPM Aicelle Santos

First up was my favorite power-belter slash pianist turned stage actress Aicelle Santos. I arrived at the venue just in time for her live rendition of Ikaw Pa Rin, off her debut album Make me Believe.

Former La Diva member Aicelle has been generating quite a buzz in the world of theater ever since she got shortlisted for the role of Gigi in Miss Saigon. Shortly after, she made her theater debut as Teen Katy in Katy the Musical and Aileen in the phenomenal Rak of Aegis, winning her first Aliw award for best actress in a musical. After recently staging her first solo concert in PETA last February, she’s set to take part in a historic musical Sabel, Love and Passion this April.

Reverb Manila OPM Indian Girl

I was standing beside this pretty little girl – unfazed by the summer sun – as she watched Aicelle sing her latest single Kapangyarihan ng Pag-ibig.

Tambay tayo. Tawagin niyo akong Aia.

ReverbManila OPM Aia de Leon

Hey there, Aia! Returning to the OPM scene is former vocalist and co-founder of Imago, Aia de Leon – and yes, she is back.

The thought of Imago always leaves me feeling quite nostalgic about college since their music defined that particular time in our lives. Plus they would often play for a lot of our school events. Admittedly, I was a bit sad to accept her part ways with Imago (especially after seeing her audition for The Voice of the Philippines). On a much lighter note, a happier Aia reenters the industry as a solo artist, and she’s promoting her new single Tao Lang. Her sound may have changed. But to me, different in this context is good. I’m pretty sure her fans are just as happy to see her back. For good.

One of the great things I love about watching concerts is the opportunity to hear new sounds from artists I have not yet heard of. And two of them were rising artists Mei Cruz and Cucay Pagdilao.

Reverb Manila OPM Mei Cruz

Emerging pop artist Mei Cruz may be a pretty familiar face on YouTube. She’s done a number of notable acoustic covers. All in all, I enjoyed her pop rock vibe during her set with OPM. Her brand new single Hibang is quite an easy listen. It also kinda reminds me of of Moonstar88’s Migraine?

Check out her music video here. She might just be a new addition to your OPM playlist.

Reverb Manila OPM Cucay Pagdilao

Another new artist Cucay Pagdilao is bound to conquer the local pop, ballad and alternative genre. She was rocking the satellite stage with her enamel white keytar! This classically trained independent artist had some undeniable stage presence so I had to step out into the sun to watch her acoustic set. I want to see her play the piano, though. From what I’ve gathered, she has finished working on her album Music, Lyrics and Longing.

 Check out her song Nala (Ikaw Pa Rin):

My accidental girl-power coverage offered a good balance between mainstream and emerging artists. They’ve got the passion and beauty with the vocal power to match!

So who’s your new favorite OPM artist? Leave a comment below.

Stay tuned for more photo and video updates on the Collab Sessions via http://www.reverbmanila.com. Please follow #ReverbManila via Tumblr, and via Facebook,Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube! 


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