25 January 2014


I became emotional when I heard that Studio 23 was going off the air. It was home to three major shows that I did: first was alternative morning show Breakfast, next was Blog, my first solo show that really gave me a big break as an entertainment host, and of course, the show I still hold so close to my heart, YSpeak.

Our first ever pictorial for YSpeak way back in 2003!

I was insanely lucky. I was a senior in college, I was modeling, doing hosting gigs on the side, and was working in production in ABS-CBN, when I was told that they were looking for a young female host to join THE Karen Davila and THE Ryan Agoncillo for a youth-oriented debate show. Can you imagine how lucky I was that my first major TV hosting job placed me stand alongside these two industry greats?? I never really found out if there was anyone else in the running for the show (haha!), but when the brainchilds of the YSpeak, Fr. Tito Caluag and producer Noel Ferrer asked me if I wanted to do it, I immediately said YES. 

And that was the start of a journey in life I never thought I'd take, but now hold dear to my heart as a personal advocacy.

We were at a 1AM then 4PM weekend timeslot on ABS-CBN for a few months, when the bosses decided to move us to Studio 23. When we moved, Ryan and I became the main hosts of the show, as we welcomed in a new batch of co-hosts to join our cause. When Ryan moved to GMA, it was me left to hold the fort, and it was just a complete honor to do so. The show evolved from a debate program to a weekly documentary, and eventually the show ended in 2010.

We did all topics from politics to sex, showbiz to friendships. It was amazing.

The show became an amazing opportunity for me to meet countless people from all industries and walks of life. It opened my eyes to so many issues and helped me come out of my shell and be confident in voicing out my own opinion. It became a platform for me and our team to win many awards, including my first ever Best Host award, and I am forever grateful.

Thank you Anak TV, KBP, CMMA, USTv, Gandingan, and
all the other award giving bodies that recognized our work!

I got to hone my hosting skills by being given one tough (and intimidating!!!!) assignment after another. Bawal yung wala kang sasabihin o wala kang opinyon! Bawal to show that you are scared if you are faced with a big time personality! Bawal to not research because if you don't know your stuff, you'll end up humiliating yourself! It was the best training any host could ask for.

I got to interview many politicians, youth leaders, advocates,
and one of our biggest series was the 2010 Presidential Elections
where I got to do a one-on-one with the Presidential and
Senatorial candidates,  including then-Presidential Gibo Teodoro.
I also got to tackle many sensitive topics and do exclusives and exposes,
like this episode we had where I interviewed a sex worker.

I will FOREVER be grateful for having been blessed with a show like YSpeak. It was truly a dream program to do. I have our amazing, passionate and hardworking staff to thank for this, our other producers and headwriters who also became my good friends like Mori Rodriguez, Karen AlmeidaMark Salamat, Xavier Gravides, Mae Manalac, all our writers, SPs, and researchers, our OJTs, our correspondents, for being part of the show's success.

Thank you also Jen, MA, Apol, LA, Tiya Pilits, Rona, lahat kayo!

And of course I am also extremely thankful to all the boys who lent their time and heart to YSpeak as well.

Now-Senator Bam Aquino who I still call Bammy Wammy!
All-around guy TJ Manotoc who is still a kuya to me until now.
He-who-knows-it-all Kuya Kim Atienza, who I turn to for help until now.

DJ Mo, Mohan Gumatay, who is one of the best hosts in my opinion.
Forever crush ng bayan Atom Araullo, who I still work with everyday today!
And of course, my original partner, the amazing Ryan Agoncillo.

I always say that I wouldn't be the host I am if it weren't for Ryan. So much of what I know, how to phrase thoughts, how to handle live shows and the blunders that come with it, how to listen, I learned from him. I had the privilege of working with him in four shows: Review Night on Cinema OneBreakfast, YSpeak, and Magandang Umaga Pilipinas. I am still hoping that the day comes that I will get a show with him again. Idol kita forever, Ry!

And the biggest thank you of all goes to every single person who watched YSpeak, and with us, believed in the power and voice of the youth. Even though its been years since the show went off air, it fills my heart with JOY to have people come up to me until now to say "I loved YSpeak!" or "That was a great show! Bakit wala nang ganun ngayon?" Every time I see our generation voice out their opinion, fight for a cause, or stand up to what they believe to be wrong, it makes me feel that we in YSpeak did something right. This show really changed my life.

Sorry for the long, senti post, I just realized that the show never got to say goodbye properly, so I'd like to do that now. Thank you for reading!

We used to end every show saying:
"Ito ang boses ng kabataan na walang inuurungan, ito ang YSpeak."


Roma said...

Aww, YSpeak. I remember we patterned several role playing presentations after YSpeak. It's one of the best shows ever. :)

Jen Arellano said...

I'm a regular viewer of YSpeak..its really informative and helpful to the student to broaden their knowledge and understanding on current events.

SkySaunter™ said...

Oh well its hard to say goodbye to those who've been a part of you success.. =(

Dennis Manalo said...

I did not know, until I came across this blog post, that Studio 23 is going off air. I'm sad that this is happening because, back in college, I used to watch lot of TV shows on Studio 23, and I YSpeak's was one of my favorites. I instantly loved the show's format, and that's when I started to admire you too (hehe!). Even when I entered adulthood, I still find time to watch YSpeak.

MC said...

lagi ko inaabangan to cause I'm a big fan kahit before ka pa lumabas sa tv and do hosting. Me and my friend Ice back in high school loved you so much that every magazine cover you're in binibili namin. too bad when I left our province to study here in Manila napabayaan na ng mama ko ung precious magazines ko . :( Mabuhay ka Bianca! BIG FAN here! :)

Anonymous said...

sana ibalik ule itong show na to! :)One of my favorites!

mylenesereno said...

Awww.. Y Speak! It was one of my favorite shows. Our generation was lucky to have a "sensible" youth-oriented show like that. Hope the network will revive it. The new generation - the youth - badly need one!