Rapping grandma among Pinoy contestants of Asia's Got Talent Season 2

by Romy Antonette Peña Cruz
Oct 13, 2017
Lola Mercy is one of the Filipino contestants who will move to the next round of Asia's Got Talent Season 2. This reality talent competition airs every Thursday at 8:30 p.m. on AXN.

The second season of Asia's Got Talent premiered Thursday night, October 12, on AXN.

True to the show's title, contestants from different parts of Asia trooped to Singapore to showcase their acts.

From singing and dancing to juggling, playing instruments, doing magic tricks, jumping through burning hoops, and even kissing cobras, the talent show's pilot episode did not disappoint.

International pop sensation and multi-platinum recording artist Jay Park is the newest addition to the judges' table.

He joins two returning judges, acclaimed music producer David Foster and World Music winner Anggun.

The show also welcomed new hosts Alan Wong and Justin Bratton.

At the press preview held at The Manila House on October 11, season one hosts Marc Nelson and Rovilson Fernandez had some tips for their successors Alan and Justin.

"I guess the best advice we could give them is be supportive of the talents," said Marc.

"Make sure whether they do well or they don't do well, that you give the love and support they deserve. Because it's nerve-wracking to be out there."

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Rovilson said the new hosts should "have fun on stage as much as possible."

This season's hosts also get the opportunity to choose the act they think should receive the golden buzzer.

This 2017, there will be a total of four golden buzzer recipients who will automatically advance to the semi-finals round.

For Asia's Got Talent Season 2, 165 acts from 15 Asian countries compete for the USD100,000 grand prize.

AGT Season 2 will have nine more episodes. The show airs every Thursday at 8:30 PM on AXN.

PINOYS CONTINUE TO SHINE. Filipinos dominated the first season of Asia's Got Talent.

In 2015, the all-male shadow play group, El Gamma Penumbra, emerged as the winner, while classical crossover singer Gerphil Flores was the third placer.

Before the press preview, PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) spoke to Armi Malaluan, country director and business head of AXN Networks Philippines, Inc.

She said she is positive about our countrymen's chances in the reality talent show.

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"Given how amazing the Filipinos are when it comes to talent, I am pretty confident that there will be a few, if not more than last season, when it comes to making it to the judges' auditions and hopefully even up to the semi-finals."

Armi's prediction came true, as the first batch of Pinoys came armed with acts that impressed the judges.

Leading the pack is the DMX Comvaleñoz Dance Crew, which hails from Compostela Valley in Mindanao.

Jay Park immediately noticed the group's stage presence, with the members all sporting long hair.

In the group's video introduction, a member dared that if they do not receive three yeses from the judges, "Magpapakalbo kami!"

The crew displayed their rock-style dancing that was filled with energy and pump. The electrifying performance included one member doing multiple back handsprings all around the stage.

The effect of their headbanging was also amplified because of their long tresses, which they flipped back and forth.

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"Wow! I understand why you have long hair now," Jay Park said after their performance.

Anggun admitted that she was "really impressed."

The DMX Comvaleñoz Dance Crew got all the judges' votes—and got to keep their long hair, for now.

FORMER PILIPINAS GOT TALENT CONTENDER JOINS AGT. The next Pinoy contestant was a familiar face for those who also watched the 5th season of the local franchise Pilipinas Got Talent.

Mercifuletes Viola or Lola Mercy entertained the judges with her rendition of "Where's the Love" by Black Eyed Peas.

The 68-year old lola from Surigao del Norte was given the hashtag #rappingGrandma.

She came onstage with her sunglasses and red caftan. After talking briefly with the judges, she removed her loose dress and revealed an all-black outfit with gold chains around her neck. A glittery bull cap completed her look.

As she sang the upbeat song, she threw out paper bills coming from inside her blouse.

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She received a unanimous yes from David, Anggun, and Jay. Lola Mercy also got bonus kisses on the cheek from both David and Jay. Lucky Lola!

DANCE GROUP GETS THROUGH THIS 2ND TIME AROUND. Another dance group completed the first crop of Pinoy acts in the reality talent competition.

D' Intensity Breakers didn't qualify when they joined AGT Season One, but they tried their luck again this year with a safari-themed performance.

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Many of them wore safari hats and light brown shirts that resembled Boy Scouts of the Philippines' uniforms.

Others wore animal-print ensembles. They performed their dance number, which included members jumping through flaming hoops.

Although they still didn't get the vote of David Foster, dubbed the "dream crusher," the yes votes from Anggun and Jay were enough to get D' Intensity Breakers through to the next round.

TOP 5 AMAZING MOMENTS OF THE PILOT EPISODE. The two-hour season premiere was packed with breathtaking moments that the Got Talent franchise is known for.

First up were the #SingingSisters from Singapore.

Clad in their white dresses and proclaiming love for ice cream, the siblings stunned the judges and audience members when they started performing the "Flower Duet."

The sisters' dreamy voices floated as they finished the famous soprano piece from the 1883 opera Lakmé.

They walked off the stage in tears after receiving three yeses from the judges.

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Indonesian Jay Tjung left everyone in awe as he displayed his core strength in his aerial pole dance act.

At one point, Jay was in an inverted split while appearing suspended on air.

Jay Park called his performance "elegant but masculine" and that his body was "flexible but strong."

When David asked Tjung if his father had ever seen him perform, the pole dance instructor said his dad thought it was "too feminine."

David then called Jay Tjung's father, who was in the audience, and father and son shared a touching moment onstage before the judges all voted yes.

The Japanese duo Yumbo Dump, meanwhile, brought the house down with hilarious antics involving their exposed stomachs.

Using their bellies and the simplest of props, the comics replicated specific sounds like the sound of water hitting a surface, a whiskey cork popping, and dolphins crying.

Every time they were about to do their bit, they would put their finger on their lips and say, "Shhhhh!"

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Yumbo Dump's perfect timing in delivering their act's "punch lines" or more like "punch sounds" left the audience in stitches.

David, meanwhile, was not impressed enough and gave them a no. But Jay and Anggun came to the rescue with their yeses, so the #FeelsSoGood duo advanced to the next round.

David, who loves magic tricks, was visibly excited when Andrew Lee said he was a magician and a mentalist.

Andrew's act started out simply. He asked host Alan to choose a card and Justin to spread the rest of the deck.

The man from Malaysia had the crowd on the edge of their seats: he made Alan wear a target around his neck, and proceeded to throw a knife at it while he was blindfolded and as Justin threw the deck of cards in the air.

When the knife landed on the target, it caught a card that happened to be what Alan had picked earlier.

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David said, "Great execution. Great style. Great confidence."

Andrew was able to move to the next round.

The show saved the best for last.

Four guys composing the Adem Dance Crew came from Central Asia's Kyrgyz Republic or Kyrgyzstan.

Their robotic dance moves appeared ordinary at first, until members popped their bones and joints, and contorted their bodies in ways almost impossible.

One part of the act also featured a levitating trick. This prompted David to comment, "I have been around a long time but I haven't seen that move. And I want to see more."

The group received a standing ovation from the judges and the audience.

Jay Park then pressed the golden buzzer and confetti rained on the venue.

The Adem Dance Crew is not only headed straight to the semi-finals, it also won a trip to Europe courtesy of the show's presenter Traveloka.

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Lola Mercy is one of the Filipino contestants who will move to the next round of Asia's Got Talent Season 2. This reality talent competition airs every Thursday at 8:30 p.m. on AXN.
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