When Angelica Panganiban was still a kid...

Dec 27, 2007
Angelica’s birthday is Nov. 4, 1986, she studied in Saint Vincent, and she has a three-year-old Japanese Spitz she calls Poochi, a gift from Edu Manzano. She is seen here at her home in Quezon City. (YES! June 2001 issue)

On and off camera, Angelica Panganiban is shy and reserved. She is also clearly not your typical teenager. At 14, she does not like parties, malling, gimmicks, or boys too much. Or so says Mommy Melania, the grandmother who raised her and remains staunchly proud of her.


The 60-year-old grandmother says, “Dito sa bahay, hindi ’yan palasalita. Pero malambing siya. Kung ako hahalikan niyan, sa lips. Hindi pa matigas ang ulo niyan, madaling sabihan, madaling sumunod.”


She adds: “Ang advice ko sa kanya, ’pakabait siya, ’wag munang mag-boyfriend, barkada okay lang. Hindi naman rebelde ang batang ’yan, nakikinig naman sa payo, pero 'pag pinagalitan mo, iiyak.”


Her granddaughter, she assures you, is a thoughtful child: “Kapag Pasko, ako binibigyan niya ’tsaka ’yung Lolo niya. Tatanungin ako niyan, ‘Anong gusto mo, Mommy, mamaya sigarilyo na naman hingiin mo, bawal sa iyo ’yon.’”


Angelica, who plays Gelai in the Saturday afternoon teen show G-mik, says she has male friends, all right. But, she insists, they are friends, nothing more.

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“Sa mga guys, si Carlo talaga ang best friend ko,” she says. “Kasi magka-love team kami, palagi kaming magkasama, so nagiging close kami. Sa babae naman, si Camille Prats, dahil masaya siyang kakuwentuhan at kasama.”
Mommy Melania likes to tell stories about the little girl she raised like her own daughter while her real daughter, Angelica’s mom Annabelle David Panganiban, earned a living.


“Nagsimula ’yan nang sumali sa Little Miss SM. Noong una, ayaw. Yung Mama niya pirmeng ‘Sige na, Angel, sumali ka na du’n sa mga ano sa TV.’ ‘Ayoko, Mama, ayoko!’ Umiiyak ’yan. Kaso na-convince noong anak kong lalaki na galing sa States, e mahal na mahal siya noon. ‘Sige, Angel, sumali ka baka mamaya, e, manalo ka.’ Nanalo rin siya. Second place. Anim na taon mahigit na siya noon.”


A talent scout then spotted her and introduced her to director Carlo Caparas. From there, she got her first movie break in Antipolo Massacre. Then Viva Films signed her up for Kadenang Bulaklak as one of the children of Nida Blanca and Luis Gonzales.

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After that, she auditioned for Ang TV of ABS-CBN. Today, she is a member of the network’s pool of talents. Happily, she won a Best Child Performer award for her role in Separada starring Maricel Soriano and Edu Manzano.


And after 11 years in show business, she is earning decent wages, while a lot more doors are opening for her. “Katulad ngayon, sabi ng anak ko kinuha si Angelica na mag-sponsor ng damit. Natutuwa na ko. Sabi ko sa anak ko, “Tanggapin mo na, huwag ka nang humirit, ang hirap-hirap ng pera ngayon.”
Anyway, says Mommy Melania, she knows that Angelica truly likes show business now. It happened back when Angelica won her best-child actress trophy and they had a conversation that went—“Ano, gusto mo pang mag-artista? ’Wag ka nang mag-artista, pag-aaral na lang ang gawin mo. Tinatamad ka nang pumasok, e.”


“Ayoko nga. Nagustuhan ko na, e.”


“Hindi ka ba nahihirapan?”

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“Hindi, Mommy. Kayang-kaya.”

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Angelica’s birthday is Nov. 4, 1986, she studied in Saint Vincent, and she has a three-year-old Japanese Spitz she calls Poochi, a gift from Edu Manzano. She is seen here at her home in Quezon City. (YES! June 2001 issue)
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