The hottest all-male P-Pop group BGYO is finally giving us the exclusive interview we’ve been dying to have. BGYO boys Gelo, Akira, JL, Mikki, and Nate chatted with our Beshie ng Bayan DJ Jhai Ho in this special Hotspot Live interview!
At the start of 2021, BGYO was launched with a mass of fans already waiting for their debut. How did they already have such a big fanbase? Because these cuties were formerly the Star Hunt Academy boys a.k.a SHA Boys who we fell in love with last year!
It’s hard to believe but during those times, the five were still undergoing intensive training and boot camps as P-pop artists. Since they garnered tons of supporters and proved that they’re more than ready to be an official P-pop group, Gelo, Akira, JL, Mikki, and Nate are now BGYO and made their debut with their single, “The Light.”
With more than 2.6 million views, not only is BGYO becoming more popular, each of the five boys are also receiving a lot of love individually. DJ Jhai couldn’t help but get to know each one’s back story before they entered Star Hunt Academy to become P-Pop stars.
Gelo Rivera didn’t always envision himself as a P-Pop personality. When he was still a student, his one and only passion on the side was dancing as he would go to dance training and local and international competitions. When he was called on to audition for Star Hunt Academy, he initially thought it was just a dancing gig. But as he learned it was more than that, he accepted the great opportunity to expand his world from just dancing.
The Star Hunt Academy experience was a similar unexpected event for Akira Morishita also. He’s always been focused on becoming an actor and he’s been cast in a few teleseryes before. He didn’t even imagine himself getting into dancing. Although, when he was invited to join Star Hunt Academy where he would be singing and dancing, he saw it as a blessing and worked hard to become the multi-talented star he is today.
Hard work and grit are nothing new to JL Toreliza too. Before Star Hunt Academy, he was really set on his dream to become a singer. While he was a student, he would take on any singing gigs, whether it may be for a fiesta, pageant intermission, or a simple exposure opportunity just to become a known artist. Because of this, he eventually got scouted and invited to audition for Star Hunt Academy and the rest was history.
Mikki Claver, on the other hand, wasn’t into singing, dancing, or acting before. Being a basketball varsity player in his school back then, the sport was his main focus. Though, from time to time, he would venture into the arts and tried his hand at writing music and rapping. As his talent improved, especially for rapping, he was asked to audition for Star Hunt Academy by a friend at Star Magic.
Nate Porcalla, the youngest of the group, already experienced some major gigs and contests for dancing including being a back-up dancer for Justin Bieber once when he lived in Chicago. This is actually no surprise as he started working on his craft since he was six years old. His hard work paid off as his audition for Star Hunt Academy passed him for a call back. Even if he was in Korea during the time, he didn’t have a hard time deciding to go back to the Philippines because he knew this was going to be his big break.
Given that the five of them all had their own strengths and weaknesses in singing and dancing, they shared that they would help each other out all the time. Aside from their Star Hunt Academy training, they make sure to look out for one another and lift each other up. “We treat each other as family,” Mikki said.
The name behind their group name is also quite a mystery but the boys gladly explained. According to them it was Direk Lauren Dyogi who coined the name, wanting it to sound strong but with a touch of Pinoy. “Bawat letter po sa BGYO may meaning po siya. B means Becoming the change po, G, Going further, Y is You and I, and O is Originally Filipino,” they expounded.
The group looks forward to collaborating with many, many other local artists in the future. They recently had a performance together with Gary Valenciano on ASAP Natin ‘To but they still want to work with him again, hopefully on an original song next. Some of the artists they mentioned whom they are excited to collaborate with one day are KZ Tandingan, Iñigo Pascual, Zild, Michael Pangilianan, Kiana Vaenciano, and even other P-Pop groups like ALAMAT.
BGYO Gelo, Akira, JL, Mikki, and Nate are extremely thankful that millions of fans appreciate them, their song The Light, and the message behind it — inspiring hope, self-love, and empowerment. Akira further explained, “The light is within you kaya lagi ka lang magkaroon ng hope, lagi mo lang alagaan ‘yung sarili mo, and just be yourself, be happy. Kasi kahit anumang problema man yung dumating sa buhay mo, merong light na nakatago sayo. And once na makita mo yun, magkaka-success ka sa buhay mo.”
Before bidding farewell to their first Hotspot experience, the boys gave a short singing sample of “The Light.” Make sure to watch the whole interview of BGYO if you want to get to know them better and hear them sing live!