• MONDAY - FRIDAY AFTER FPJ's ANG PROBINSYANO
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Tart Carlos and Brenda Mage share LOL stories about their quarantine days, acting gig for Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin
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In an appearance for Kapamilya Chat, actress Tart Carlos and comedian Brenda Mage share their quarantine stories, how it feels to be part of a groundbreaking Kapamilya series, and their comfort food specialties. 

It is safe to say that Tart is an experienced online seller. She’s been in the digital business industry for more than a decade already, selling gourmet tuyo and party platters. It has been therefore easier for her to keep up with the quarantine market competition. Thanks to Brenda as well, Tart managed to grow her online presence and gain more customers.

Tart and Brenda’s closeness developed deeper on the set of Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin. They keep in touch on their days off from work, as Brenda helps Tart promote her online business.

While Tart is on the selling side, Brenda focuses on creating vlog content. Her recent entries feature male delivery riders. What started out as just non-serious entertainment eventually became Brenda’s source of income. She now receives free food and items from sponsors in exchange of getting featured in her channel, besides the salary gained from the number of views and followers. The It’s Showtime Miss Q & A finalist now has a million followers on Facebook, a sign that her brand of comedy roars loud.   

We could see more of Brenda’s amusing antics in the primetime series Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin where she plays as Restituto aka Tutti, the executive assistant of Jodi Sta. Maria’s Marissa. The lively Tutti is one of Marissa’s confidantes. 

Just like Brenda, Tart is also on Team Marissa. She portrays the role of an office girl who formerly worked for Ellice (Iza Calzado), Marissa’s best friend turned rival. Not that she has bad blood towards her ex-boss but Tart’s character would simply find genuine friendship with Marissa. 

Tart and Brenda take Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin as a blessing, especially now that some are dealing with financial problems due to the pandemic. They are overwhelmed and honored to be working with the biggest names in the industry.

Tart says she prayed for guidance in choosing between two projects – Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin and a six-episode iWant series. Not that she’s being choosy, but as a mom of three, Tart settled for the longer show to secure her family’s needs.

Brenda is likewise handpicked for the role by Ms. Julie Ann Benitez, head of the JRB Creative Production herself. As Brenda narrates, she was first introduced to Ms. Benitez at a party she hosted. Brenda made a good impression, so Ms. Benitez decided to include her in the series, her first in the Kapamilya Network.

Prior to the resumption of tapings last month, the cast had to undergo swab tests for COVID-19. The way ‘new normal’ is shaking up the entertainment industry is a challenge to everyone. More than the mandatory guidelines such as wearing facemasks and social distancing, what makes it more difficult is being locked-in for a whole month on the set, away from loved ones.  They aren’t allowed to entertain visitors. There was a moment when Tart had to content herself with waving at her kids from a distance.

Brenda felt the same gloom. Known for her lively nature, she isn’t used to just being cooped up without her loved ones. She struggled in having no one to talk to, besides her roommate Jimmy Marquez, who she loves to make fun of. Moreover, it’s a new experience to work without the glam team and personal assistants.

There are pieces that excite Brenda, though. She says the new normal tapings allow her to do some things she wouldn’t normally do like sleeping in a hotel room and swimming in a pool. She also takes advantage of the hotel’s fitness amenities. On top of that, she feels ecstatic over sharing the same place with some of the biggest Kapamilya stars.  

Apart from the episodes aired via Kapamilya Channel, the series innovates an interactive segment called “Unscripted,” shown in every gap of Kapamilya Online Live . It is a virtual split-screen interaction headed by the cast where they discuss viewers’ comments and behind-the-scene stories. Live audiences are also invited to join the conversation.

Brenda joined Iza Calzado in “Unscripted” last Monday (August 24) while Tart is set to appear with Sam Milby on the upcoming Friday (August 28) episode.

Was there ever a time when Tart and Brenda told someone, “Ang sa iyo ay akin” in real life? Tart says ‘never.’ “Ako ‘yung tipo na mahilig magparaya. Kahit alam ko na dapat sa akin ‘yun pero magpaparaya na lang ako. Sobra kasi akong kuntento na kaysa pag-awayan pa, eh di sa’yo na lang ‘yan, mayroon din naman ako.

Meanwhile, Brenda tweaks the statement a little as she relates them to unfulfilled dreams. “Sana ang sa iyo ay akin,” is what she feels like saying to someone who achieves what she could only dream of. “O siguro sa ex ko na may jowa na, ‘Ang sa iyo ay naging akin,’” she adds in jest.

“Juice ko, Brenda!”

A Misamis Oriental native, Brenda shares one of her favorite comfort food in the province – buko lamaw or buko juice with biscuits. “Every weekend, maliligo kami sa dagat, sa waterfalls, tapos ito lang ang baon kasi sa amin ninanakaw lang ang mga buko,” she says. Brenda demonstrates how to make the refreshing drink into a filling merienda.

“Nang mag-tuyo si Tart”

Tart demonstrates one perfect way to use her special gourmet tuyo products available online. She calls this unique pasta recipe “Nang Mag-tuyo si Tart” as she ditches the commonly used pasta sauces for her very own gourmet tuyo. This dish is very easy to make and budget-friendly since you’ll be using just the dried fish to create the base flavor. While cooking, Tart shares that she got her kitchen skills from her Kapampangan father.