With her mellifluous voice and heartfelt, stirring renditions, we already knew right from the start of her journey that Butuan’s pride Elaine Duran had a great potential to be make it to the homestretch of Tawag ng Tanghalan, which is currently on its third season.
Like most of the singers we admire, singing has been her first love as she began exposing and honing her vocal prowess at a very young age. She joined the reality singing competition Little Big Star as one of the contenders of the Little Division, which was won by Rhap Salazar, and became one of the monthly finalists.
In college, she further developed her artistic talent by participating in their school’s musical theater organization.
She snagged the main roles of their adaptations of classic plays, such as Annie of Little Orphan Annie, Kim of Miss Saigon, and Eponine of Les Miserables.
As such, it’s no wonder why Elaine has an incredible confidence and unmistakable presence on stage and evocative vocals that can hit us straight to our hearts.
On the first-time she stepped on the It’s Showtime stage last September 7, the “Bida sa Galing of Butuan City” immediately astonished everyone with her heart-wrenching take on “Now That You’re Gone” and dominated the daily rounds.
It was her performance of Bruno Mars’ “Versace on the Floor” that the panel of judges truly enjoyed dethroned then-defending champion Audrey Malaiba, who sang Mariah Carey’s “Hero”.
The young aspiring diva proved that she didn’t want nothing at all but to keep her title and the golden microphone from her challenger Rosavilma Lomarda when she mesmerized us with her rendition of Alicia Keys’ “If I Ain't Got You”,
Mary Hope Ureta’s attempt to make the world dance through her mellow take on Jessie J’s “Price Tag” kind of fell short as the three-day winner lit up everyone’s heart with “On the Wings of Love”.
The competition was indeed stiff that day as both Rossini Mae Navarro, who sang Aegis’ “Munting Pangarap”, and Elaine, who sang her idol Kyla’s “Hanggang Ngayon” did a great a job. But in the end, it was the latter who scored the highest.
It wasn’t yet the time for her to bid farewell and pass on the golden microphone to daily winner Xyza de Guzman as the young singer made everyone’s heart melted and eyes glistened with her emotive take on the heartbreak anthem “I Love You, Goodbye”.
On her sixth day, Cebu’s representative Robert Encila failed to oust Elaine with his version of the OPM classic “Di Na Natuto”, as she knocked us off our feet with her superb rendition of JoJo’s “Weak”.
Another Cebuano, in the person of the sweet-faced yet powerful belter Kristel Budomo, attempted to become the new titleholder but fell short. Performing her soulful take on Bruno Mars’ “When I Was Your Man”, the Butuanon songstress left the ¬hurados and the audiences awestruck.
She didn’t have to wait for that ‘one day’ for her to feel loved and valued by someone as she received praises and loud applauses for her moving rendition of Nina’s hit “Someday”, defeating the young crooner Ethan Clark Vibares.
On her ninth appearance on the It’s Showtime stage, she lulled us with her euphonious delivery of the all-time favorite “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” and mercilessly eliminated Joel Alcaraz’ chance of bringing home the bacon.
Pressure was really intense for her on her 10th day as the defending champion for her performance would dictate how she’ll fare in the competition. She might be restless, but there was no hint of exhaustion on her voice and disposition when she belted out Adele’s emotive hit “When We Were Young”. Later on, she received a standing ovation from judges Yeng Constantino and K Brosas and a 95.6% rating, beating Jam Mariz Juane who sang “Better Days” by Dianne Reeves.
Since she was able to retain her winning streak for 10 consecutive days, Elaine was declared as the first-ever Tawag ng Tanghalan Record Holder and was given the opportunity to choose among the three “treasures” she wants to add in her whopping P260,000 accumulated cash prize.
It took her quite some time to decide, but she eventually opted for the additional P50,000 than having a sure single under TNT records and the special power to pick her song and her co-semifinalists’ piece on the first day of their forthcoming face-off
“Gusto ko po kasi na by process po talaga; na kung mananalo po ako, magkakaroon po ako recording. Di ko rin po pinili yung golden na micropono kasi gusto ko po na maging fair yung laban,” she stated.
Indeed, an incredible feat for this amazing singer.