A day before their presentation, the It’s Showtime fam pays tribute to Jhong Hilario and Ryan Bang, who are the kuya and bunso among the OG hosts and both started their stints in the noontime program as hurados.
And on Tuesday, November 15, the time has come for them to showcase not just how tightly bonded they are, but the beautiful and colorful culture and heritage of Philippines and South Korea through their diverse and star-studded Magpasikat performance that ran for more than 20 minutes, on the second day of the “TRESElebrate” anniversary fete.
Aptly dubbed Team Ko-Fi, which is short for “Korean-Filipino,” they commenced their cultural show by appearing onstage in traditional costumes of their respective countries – with Jhong in Barong Tagalog and Ryan in hanbok – while brandishing Philippine and Korean flaglets. Being natural comedians that they both are, they truly amused us with their witty banters and a brief sharing about their friendship, that has already spanned for 13 years as well, just like It’s Showtime.
They started off their skit by touring us to the three of the top tourist spots in the Philippines, namely, Banaue Rice Terraces, Luneta Park, and Oslob in Cebu, wherein Jhong made Ryan experience some of the activities usually done in those places. The madlang people were then thrilled to see the daughters of Melai Cantiveros and Jason Francisco, Mela and Stella, emerge onstage as they danced to BINI’s cover of “Da Coconut Nut” and played Pinoy street games (sipa, piko, and luksong baka) with Jhong and Ryan.
Kilig then filled the studio as popular loveteam KD Estrada and Alexa Ilacad appeared and treated us with a harana. Kaori Oinuma and former Sexy Babe contestant Cianne Dominguez also graced the show to represent Masskara and Panagbenga festivals, respectively.
After their tour around the Philippines, it was Ryan’s turn to take Jhong around his homeland South Korea, wherein they virtually visited Gyeongbokgung Palace, Hongdae, and Nami Island. Former Goin’ Bulilit child star Chunsa Jung then stepped out the stage to dance to Seventeen’s “Left & Right” and played the traditional Korean game “tuho.” The two also showed a bit of their taekwondo skills with Joao Constancia.
The dynamic duo then made us laugh with their depiction of Korean drama along with Ryan’s friend Ivy Park, by incorporating Korean translations of notable lines from Pinoy movies in their intense dialogues. Just like what we commonly see in K-series or movies, they provided subtitles for viewers to understand what they were saying.
Of course, featuring the culture of South Korea would never be complete without K-Pop! And much to the delight of the madlang people, they treated us to a mini concert experience by having up-and-coming Hallyu pop group TFN perform live on the It’s Showtime stage.
Just when we thought that it’s already over, video messages from K-Pop stars Sandara Park, Thunder of MBLAQ, Nancy McDonnie of Momoland, TAN (or To All Nations), and Lapillus, were shown as they expressed their well-wishes for the program’s 13th anniversary and their admiration to Pinoys. Events host and translator Sandra Jung also imparted what made her love and decide to settle here in the Philippines.
Philippine Ambassador to the Republic of Korea Maria Theresa Dizon-De Vega, on the other hand, related how the close ties between Filipinos and Koreans started in their solid partnership during the Korean War in the early 1950s. A few Pinoy Korean War veterans were also interviewed, in which they recounted a bit of their experiences during their unforgettable and revered stints in the said historical warfare.
And since the two nations mark the 73rd Phil-Kor friendship anniversary this 2022, Jhong and Ryan dedicated their Magpasikat entry to the Pinoy Korean war veterans, with one of them being their live audience in the studio. Jhong grooved to the Korean traditional dance with a group of female dancers while they were dressed in hanboks, and then showed his skills in playing a buk (or Korean traditional drum).
Ryan, on the other hand, amazed us with how he nailed his performance of Pinoy folk dances together with a group of folk dancers. Multi-awarded singer and songwriter Bayang Barrios also offered an invigorating performance of a song that speaks about gratitude towards the heavenly gifts that we currently savor.
“TRESElebrate” marks the return of the traditional week-long It’s Showtime celebration, two years after it was only held for a day due to the restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The hurados for Magpasikat 2022 are John Arcilla, Baron Geisler, Pia Magalona, Janice de Belen, Darren Espanto, and ABS-CBN Foundation Head and Executive Director for Advocacy and G Diaries host Ernie Lopez as the punong hurado.
The next groups to perform are Team Jugs-Teddy-Kim for Wednesday, Team Vice-Amy for Thursday, and Team Karylle-Ogie for Friday. Team-Anne-Jackie-Ion was the first one to present their entry last Monday, November 14. Whichever team wins this year’s competition will have a chance to donate Php 500,000 to their chosen charity.