First time lahat. First time to see Willie Nepomuceno in person, LIVE (until now I couldn’t believe I was inside the same venue with him), first time to be in Music Museum (liit lang pala ng venue), and first time to hang out with my sister in-law. Out of my hard-earned income I really forced to set aside a budget for it just to see the show which was just a spur-of-the-moment thing. When you’re feeling miserable, pampering yourself — though sometimes expensive — seems to be the cure. Going to church does help but when you’re feeling so down and out, you needed a person or thing that you could see, hold, or experience to help you understand things. God knows how I was secretly screaming for His help.
It was Friday (yes, just yesterday) and decided not to go to work. It was a very bad, scary week for me. So I just stayed at home, to feel my misery even more inflicted by this wolf in sheep’s clothing — greedy, love for power and hungry for more, monstrously insecure being who masquerades through niceness, never speaking ill-will about anyone in the office. Only a brief moment since I woke up, out of the blue, I remembered this career counselor who has this weekly column in Philippine Daily Inquirer every Sunday. I thought of writing to him. Digging through our piles of old newspapers, I stumbled upon this article about Willie Nepomuceno, dated April 12, 2010. Then one thing just led to another, as if it was divine intervention, after reading the article, I knew I needed to go out and watch his show, even though the tickets were pricey: P1,030 for the balcony and P2,000 for the orchestra. So I invited my “rich” brother (who is a balikbayan) and his wife to accompany me.
As fate would have it, we got the best seats. We were assigned in the orchestra center seats, five rows away from the stage but near, nonetheless, to the stage. We no longer had to debate with the ticket person because the ones who were ahead of us took a “long” time negotiating, sometimes, debating regarding their preferred seats. I was living like a “rich” person for that fleeting moment, feeling like God and His angels were sympathizing with me giving me, my brother, and his wife, one of the best seats inside the theatre. Before the show, we dined in FlapJack which I found very expensive. I ordered for chicken & pork tocino but it already costs my brother P285. Hindi naman masarap. Mas masarap pa yung luto sa Jollibee. Yes, through the kindness of my “rich” brother, he “sponsored” everything even if I was the one who did the inviting. Also, before the show, along the way as we were about to climb the stairs leading to Music Museum, we chanced upon the man himself, Willie Nep, puffing his cigarette like an ordinary mortal outside the venue. He was chatting with some men.
The show started at 8:30pm. The real act didn’t come out right away because we, the audience, were first entertained by the music of old campaign jingles and one that I remember was this Mambo, mambo Magsaysay jingle, then later on the commercial jingles. I don’t know if it’s really a common practice before a show starts but there was a raffle. Again, as fate would have it, we were one of the lucky few who won in the raffle. We didn’t get the items though ’cause the show was about to start any moment, the pathways were all blocked (there were cameras) and the way to go was the long way no shortcut and I didn’t wanna risk it. So I just hang on to my seat, anyway, the guy said, “For the shy ones, you can get your freebies right after the show.” (We, still, didn’t get the items due to the congested (and long line) of people going out of the theatre after the show.)
The show was entitled “Presidentiables’ gut Talent”, a satire on our presidential candidates which made me laugh so hard (I was also glad hearing my older brother enjoying the night, actually di pa nagsasalita mga candidates he was snickering already). Based on the reality TV show, Pilipinas Got Talent, hosted by Ai-Ai de las Alas, Kris Aquino, & Freddie Garcia which features the remarkable talents of Filipinos from all walks of life, “Presidentiables’ gut Talent” featured presidentiables in their never before seen talents. The contestants: Manny Villar, Gibo Teodoro, Dick Gordon, Joseph “Erap” Estrada, and Noynoy Aquino — all impersonated by, who else, Willie Nepomuceno. Grabe, Willie is really one-of-a-kind even if others, the younger ones, have become more popular than him in doing impersonation. The show was hosted by Kris Aquino who was impersonated by Willie’s daughter, Frida Nepomuceno.
For the first time, I watched Manny Villar became a rapper for one night. Gibo who is known to be a pilot did a levitation in the competition. Erap, for his part, performed magic tricks, vanishing right in front of us, the audience, his vices — cigarette, beer, and women. Dick Gordon, how could I forget, showed off his talent in ventriloquism where he introduced to us his puppet named “Bayani”. Of course, Noynoy, showing off his David Copperfield way on how to punish PGMA in case he wins in the election. So who was the talentadong presidentiable that night? Of course, Willie Nepomuceno! Galing. Then things became serious when Kris Aquino aka Frida called to the stage Willie Nep, without the makeup, prosthetics, and wigs, who later expressed his sentiments about the coming election, which is no laughing matter. Didn’t know Willie Nep sings so to end his show, he sang his composition he collaborated with Louie Ocampo as a song for us, Filipinos, na sana daw kahit sino ang manalo, ang panalo ay ang taumbayan. Then, as if to say goodbye, before leaving the room, he asked us to smile for one last moment.
Written on April 17, 2010– The Best of “Living well is the best revenge” (theuntouchableone.multiply.com)