With a million tweets making this Yuletide tradition an unprecedented trending broadcast event, the 2021 ABS-CBN Christmas Special on Saturday, December 18 was both a meaningful and glittering array of world-class performances from more than 100 Kapamilya stars.
The show reached the million-tweet milestone during the second hour of the program, as netizens expressed their admiration, delight, and astonishment with the exceptional performances from the Kapamilya artists.
Carrying the theme “Andito Tayo Para Sa Isa’t Isa,” this year’s celebration marked the Filipinos’ support and responsiveness to each other’s needs amid the difficulties and challenges they face.
As the Christmas Special began with a child praying for a brighter future while thanking all the everyday heroes who helped us through the worst times, Kapamilya stars then began performing their captivating numbers to delight audiences.
The opening performance was a collection of past Christmas ID theme songs with Coco Martin and Julia Montes first singing the groundbreaking Kapamilya Christmas anthem of 2009, “Bro, Ikaw Ang Star Ng Pasko,” before Vhong Navarro, Darren Espanto, and Kim Chiu danced to the ever popular Yuletide tune. “Mr. Pure Energy” Gary Valenciano and Janine Gutierrez would then give their version of “Thank You For The Love” from the 2015 Christmas ID.
King of OPM Ogie Alcasid was next, singing the 2010 Kapamilya Yuletide song “Ngayong Pasko, Magniningning Ang Pilipino” with Jayda and Kyle Echarri, followed by Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez-Alcasid, who performed “Just Love Ngayong Christmas” from the ABS-CBN Christmas ID in 2017 with Lovi Poe, Paulo Avelino, and Richard Gutierrez.
Top new-gen love teams SethDrea (Seth Fedelin and Andrea Brillantes) and DonBelle (Donny Pangilinan and Belle Mariano) brought all the kilig feels in their respective duets of the 2018 Kapamilya Christmas song “Family Is Love.” Then the premiere Kapamilya love team KathNiel (Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla) would then take the stage to perform last year’s Christmas ID tune “Ikaw Ang Liwanag At Ligaya.”
Megastar Sharon Cuneta then capped the opening number in leading the singing of this year’s “Andito Tayo Para Sa Isa’t Isa” Christmas anthem with the other Kapamilya stars onstage.
After honoring teachers and the youth for overcoming challenges brought about by the pandemic, ABS-CBN’s top young stars grooved to the beat of the biggest dance hits on TikTok. SethDrea and DonBelle danced to the tune of “Skiriii,” while Francine Diaz and the cast of He’s Into Her displayed their cool moves with “Tutu.” DonBelle then reappeared to flash their dancing prowess in their performance of “Designer Music” with the Squad Plus members. After SethDrea gave a reprise of “Skiriii,” New-Gen Dance Princess AC Bonifacio took over the dancefloor with Davao’s D’ Squared CRU dance crew and the accompanying love teams and young stars to the tune of “Kiss Kiss.”
Stars from top Kapamilya programs then performed a medley of traditional Pinoy Christmas carols. Magandang Buhay momshies Jolina Magdangal, Melai Cantiveros, and Karla Estrada first sang “Namamasko”. The cast of Marry Me, Marry You, including Janine, Paulo, Cherry Pie Picache, Vina Morales, and Lotlot de Leon, then gave their rendition of “Pasko Na Naman.”
La Vida Lena stars Erich Gonzales, Carlo Aquino, and JC de Vera followed with a hearty chorus of “Noche Buena” before the lead actors of Viral Scandal, such as Charlie Dizon, Joshua Garcia, Dimples Romana, Jake Cuenca, Miko Raval, Karina Bautista, Aljon Mendoza, Jameson Blake, Ria Atayde, Louise Abuel, performed “O Magsaya at Magdiwang.”
Hosts of Pinoy Big Brother Kumunity Season 10—Toni Gonzaga, Bianca Gonzales, Robi Domingo, and Enchong Dee—then sang “Kumukuti-kutitap” and were later joined by both current housemates and evictees in the performance.
What followed was a touching Christmas segment, featuring the It’s Showtime family, in which the hosts led by Vice Ganda granted the wish of ReiNanay Janet. As a Christmas gift for the Reina Ng Tahanan contestant, the show located her estranged family members, including her mother and siblings, and brought them to the studio for a tearful reunion.
Another moving production number followed, this time featuring OFWs and their children. Regine and Ogie performed “Sa Araw Ng Pasko” with Morissette, John Arcilla, Agot Isidro, Sheena Belarmino, Janine Berdin and the OFWs’ children as these overseas workers expressed their heartfelt messages to their kids.
Gary V, Kyle, AC, Jayda, Jolina, Vina, and Janella Salvador then sang and bopped to a medley of VST & Co songs, including “Awitin Mo (At Isasayaw Ko)”, “Disco Fever,” “Tayo’y Magsayawan,” and “Step No, Step Yes.”
Kapamilya’s top leading men then serenaded the unheralded female frontliners in the continuing service of the Filipino with such OPM hits as “Dahil Sa Iyo,” “Prinsesa,” “Ligaya,” “Harana,” “Hanggang Kailan,” and “Hinahanap-hanap Kita.” They included Donny Pangilinan, Edward Barber, Seth Fedelin, Kyle Echarri, Jeremiah Lisbo, Anthony Jennings, JC Alcantara, Ronnie Alonte, Jameson Blake, Aljon Mendoza, JC de Vera, Enchong Dee, RK Bagatsing, Jake Cuenca, Joseph Marco, Carlo Aquino, Arjo Atayde, Paulo Avelino, Sam Milby, Gerald Anderson, Richard Gutierrez, Joshua Garcia, Daniel Padilla, and Piolo Pascual.
The FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano cast, consisting of Coco Martin, Julia Montes, Lorna Tolentino, Tirso Cruz III, Rowell Santiago, John Estrada, John Prats, Rosanna Roces, Michael de Mesa, Jaime Fabregas and Megastar Sharon Cuneta, among others, then performed their versions of famous Manila Sound tunes.
Kapamilya leading ladies then took the stage to pay tribute to medical frontliners by singing such Yuletide hits as “It’s Christmas All Over The World,” “A Perfect Christmas,” and “Christmas In Our Hearts.” Sharon led the gathering of top female stars—Kathryn Bernardo, Julia Montes, Angelica Panganiban, Kim Chiu, Andrea Brillantes, Francine Diaz, Belle Mariano, Lovi Poe, Iza Calzado, Janine Gutierrez, Charlie Dizon, Loisa Andalio, Maymay Entrata, Dimples Romana, Shaina Magdayao, Erich Gonzales, Janella Salvador, Heaven Peralejo, Barbie Imperial, Kira Balinger, Jane de Leon, and Ivana Alawi.
ABS-CBN then unveiled its exciting lineup of forthcoming TV shows, iWantTFC originals, and movie offerings from Star Cinema next year through a teaser. These include Darna: The TV Series starring Jane de Leon, the KathNiel comeback series 2 Good 2 Be True, and The Broken Marriage Vow featuring a superb cast led by Jodi Sta. Maria.
In the extended run of the 2021 ABS-CBN Christmas Special airing on the Kapamilya Channel and Kapamilya Online Live, the 30th anniversary of Star Magic was marked. The now international talent Inigo Pascual first revealed how the leading talent agency prepared him for the world stage.
Top Star Magic talents then performed top hits during the agency’s 30-year journey, from the 1990s with Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” to Maymay’s latest smash “Amakabogera.” Top icons and new-gen stars have also collaborated in singing contemporary OPM hits, such as Ben&Ben’s “Pagtingin” and Angela Ken’s “Ako Naman Muna.” U.S. pop chart-toppers followed, including Dua Lipa’s “Levitating” performed by Lovi Poe and BTS’s “Permission to Dance” interpreted by Kyle Echarri, Darren Espanto, and AC Bonifacio.
The country’s all-star vocalists then performed a powerful Broadway medley, with such songs “Memory” from Cats, “Somewhere” from West Side Story, “I Dreamed A Dream” from Les Miserables, and “Defying Gravity”. Taking centerstage were the most brilliant male stage performers Jed Madela, Nyoy Volante, John Arcilla, Jett Pangan, Robert Sena, and Jason Dy. Top female singers also delivered impeccable vocal renditions of the theater musical themes, including Jamie Rivera, Morissette, Klarisse de Guzman, Lara Maigue, Isay Alvarez, Joanna Ampil, and Rachel Alejandro.
OPM legends and top Kapamilya stars then performed songs of hope, inspiration, love, resilience that wish for a bright future in the finale number for the 2021 ABS-CBN Christmas Special. Sharon, Regine, Piolo and Vice Ganda first sang Florante’s “Sana” before Gary V, Ogie, Jayda, Klarisse, Reiven Umali, Sheena Belarmino, and John Arcilla gave a moving rendition of Smokey Mountain’s “Paraiso.”
ABS-CBN Chairman Mark Lopez, CEO Carlo Katigbak, and COO for Broadcast Cory Vidanes then led the closing prayer before the Kapamilya stars in the special ended the yearly celebration with a reprise of “Andito Tayo Para Sa Isa’t Isa.”