"Ugly Duckling" to Beautiful Swan

Charice had been told that she would never be a success because she "wasn't good enough" and "wasn't pretty." In fact, it was worse than that. Some of Charice's classmates were so cruel as to call her "ugly" and "loser." Just for comparison, here's a video of Charice singing "To Love You More" at age 9 and seven years later, at age 16.

Charice's performance at age 9, on the show Bulilit StarQuest, earned her the grand prize. I love Charice's exaggerated gestures and choreography, which were created and coached by her mother ("Mommy Raquel"). In a smoother and more refined form, many of these would continue to be incorporated into Charice's repertoire. Unfortunately, Charice did not fit the Filipino ideal of beauty -- tall with European features, light skin, and long tresses.

Compare this to Charice's performance seven years later. Not only is her voice much more powerful, her ability to improvise around the melody is exceptional. Charice's obvious pleasure and confidence shine. And look what a pretty young woman she's become! Just like the ugly duckling who was relentlessly criticized for being different, Charice is now a beautiful swan. This performance aired on Umagang Kay Ganda (TV show), 11/13/2008.

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