The remaining 20 hopefuls in the ongoing StarStruck The Next Level, GMA-7's first and original reality-based artista search, were presented for the first time to the entertainment press last night, December 27.
The 10 boys and 10 girls each paraded their talents—30 seconds of singing or dancing—to the press attending the launch at Studio 3 of the Kapuso Network.
The top 10 boys are Aljur Abrenica, 16, of Pampanga; Chad Burden, 20, Cebu; Dave Valentino, 20, Marikina; Dex Quindoza, 17, Manila; Jan Manual, 20, Laguna; Kiko Junio, 16, Pampanga; Lui Perez, 19, South Cotabato; Mart Escudero, 16, Cavite; Paulo Avelino, 18, Baguio City; and Prince Stefan, 17, Iloilo.
The top 10 girls are Chariz Solomon, 17, of Pasay; Hazel Uy, 19, Cebu; Jean de Castro, 17, Mandaluyong; Jesi Corcuera, 16, Pasay; Jewel Mische, 16, Bulacan; Kris Bernal, 17, Quezon City; Lizzy Pecson, 19, Pampanga; Renee Lascuna, 17, Davao; Rich Asuncion, 17, Bohol; and Stef Prescott, 16, La Union.
This fourth batch of StarStruck contestants is one of the most interesting in the history of the talent search of GMA-7. There are the sob stories—someone who is a product of a dysfunctional family or someone looking for a missing biological parent—that have become a staple among contestants in artista-searches since StarStruck began.
This year's roster also includes a son of royalty from Saudi Arabia (Prince Stefan), a Sam Milby-look alike (Dave Valentino), a former talent of ABS-CBN (Mart Escudero), a son whose father is in jail for drug possession (Kiko Junio), a Japan entertainer-wannabe (Chariz Solomon), and a girl who is openly lesbian (Jesi Corcuera).
For the first time in the four-year history of StarStruck, four equal winners will be named and three titles are at stake: Ultimate Sweetheart, Ultimate Hunk, and Ultimate Loveteam.
On New Year's Eve, December 31, these 20 hopefuls will be reduced to the standard Final 14 in an episode airing live from Raja Sulayman Park, Baywalk, Manila.
The fate of the StarStruck Top 20 rests on: (1) the votes of the Council, composed of multi-awarded actress Lorna Tolentino, multi-media director Louie Ignacio, and top-caliber talent manager Douglas Quijano; and (2) the text votes from their fans and supporters.
To vote, just text STARSTRUCK
StarStruck The Next Level is hosted by Dingdong Dantes, Raymond Gutierrez and Jolina Magdangal.
Past winners include Mark Herras, Jennylyn Mercado, Mike Tan, Ryza Cenon, Jackie Rice, and Marky Cielo.