Choreographer Anna Feliciano is back to creating new routines for the dancers of Willie Revillame's new show Willing Willie.
She once was a dance choreographer for the MTB Dancers of ABS-CBN's defunct noontime show Magandang Tanghali Bayan. When the show was replaced by Wowowee in 2005, Anna remained as the head of the dancers who were then called the Wowowee Dancers. That same year, the group was replaced by Anna's own group called ASF Dancers (derived from the initials of Anna Soriano Feliciano). She acted as their manager and choreographer.
Over the years, Anna was working not only with the dancers but also with the long-time noontime show host Willie Revillame. She learned a lot of lessons from the man fondly called Kuya Willie.
"Napaka-professional. 'Yon ang gusto ko kasi ako din, professional din ako. Alam mo 'yon, maaga siyang pumasok, maaga din akong pumasok. Masarap...matututo ka talaga. Perfectionist," Anna describes the host of the upcoming primetime show of TV5, Willing Willie.
Months before Wowowee was replaced by Pilipinas Win na Win, Anna already resigned from choreographing its dancers for personal reasons. After she quit, the ASF Dancers were handled by a different choreographer.
Although she stopped working with Willie after her resignation, Anna kept in touch with the TV host. So, when Willie needed her services again, she accept his offer without second thought.
"From Wowowee, ayun, tinawagan ako ni Kuya, may show daw siyang bago. Ano, mga last month or two months ago. Ibang show pa, e," recalled Anna, who will be the head choreographer of Willing Willie's WW.Girls.
She continued, "Basta, tinawagan ako ni kuya kasi babalik na sana siya ng ABS-CBN. So, sabi ko, 'Sige, kuya babalik din ako.' 'Tapos sa TV ko lang din napanood at biglang iba na. So, tinawagan ko si Jay Montelibano [former Business Unit Head of ABS-CBN], 'Ano ba? Ano'ng nangyari? Akala ko Wowowee?' Sabi niya iba na ang nangyari. 'Tapos 'yon nga sabi ni kuya, may bagong show, ito na nga 'yon [Willing Willie].
"Kada ano ni kuya, offer niya, hindi ako nagdadalawang-isip na sumama kasi naniniwala ako sa kakayahan niya, sa talent niya. Kasi, alam ko na lahat ng gagawin niya, sure 'yon. Alam ko papatok talaga."
Although she was invited by Willie to join his team called Wil Productions, Anna said the controversial host strictly reminded them not to invite former Wowowee staff members who were absorbed by Pilipinas Win na Win.
"'Yon din naman ang sinabi sa akin ni kuya [na huwag maghatak]," Anna related to PEP. "Like ako, may mga friends pa ako doon sa Pilipinas Win na Win. Sabi ni kuya sa akin, 'Huwag kang maghahatak kasi ano 'yan, e, masamang gawain. Parang hindi professional. Gawa na lang tayo ng sarili natin. Huwag na huwag kayong maghahatak.' E, bigla na lang din silang lumalabas."
Is it true that people shifted from ABS-CBN to TV5 because the monetary offer was big?
"Hindi naman, ewan ko," answered Anna. "Hindi ko naman sinasabing mayaman ako. 'Sakto lang ako, kumakain ng tatlong beses isang araw and I'm not asking for more."
Anna said she really didn't mind if she'd get higher pay for accepting Willing Willie. She just thought that the program would bring back fun and entertainment that Wowowee once created for the televiewers.
She further said, "Si Kuya kasi, kailangan pa siya ng mga tao, lalo na ng matatanda. Kailangan pa siya sa mga nalalabi niyang panahon dito sa mundo."