Tetchie Agbayani's new award inspires her to accept more acting jobs

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"I'mslowly inching my way back to the business. Sa totoo lang kasi, hindi ko magawa‘yan noong mas maaga. Yung anak ko, nagpapalaki pa ako. Now, she's 16 andnow na malaki na siya, maayos ko naman siya naaruga. So, unti-unti, binabawi kona yung oras para habulin ang iba ko pang pangarap," says Tetchie Agbayani.



Playing mother to a daughter who mysteriously falls ill and turns out to be an aswang is the role that made part-time actressTetchie Agbayani a Best Supporting Actress winner again for the film Yanggaw inCinema One Originals Digital Film Festival. The awards night washeld yesterday, November 28, at the Dolphy Theater in ABS-CBN.

"My last acting award for Best Supporting Actress was for themovie Sakay [1993], which is a long time ago, a decade or probably more from[Manila] Film Festival," pag-reminisce ni Tetchie nang makausap siya ng PEP(Philippine Entertainment Portal) pagkatapos niyang maparangalan.

Ngayong nabigyan na naman siya ng recognition, how does shefeel about it?

"Mahirap pang i-process kasi I didn't even know na nominatedako," sabi ni Tetchie. "So, wala akong ine-expect at all. I'm just here to supportthe group, the people that I worked with for Yanggaw film. Susuport lang ako,yun lang ang sa akin. And to win best supporting award, siyempreoverwhelmingly happy ako. So, exciting! Exciting siya!"

Since she's a Psychology professor at St. Joseph College,ano ang naging first consideration niya when she accepted a movie acting jobagain?

"Three years ago, when I met Richard Somes [director of the film], we were in oneteleserye and he told me about Yanggaw. He told me the story and he said hewants to get me as the mother. So, immediately, na-touched ako, na-moved ako sastorytelling niya. So I said, ‘If you produce this movie and you get it done, Iwill do the mother role for you.'

"And three years passed, wala akong narinig sa kanya. Soakala ko, wala na. But it was so sayang kasi it was such a nice story. And then,finally, one day, he called me up and he said, ‘Tuloy na, sa Cinema One natingagawin. Ikaw pa rin...'

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"So, ako naman, parang na-appreciate ko yung he held on tothe faith na si Tetchie talaga ‘yan, na ganyan. Pero ang dating noong una, okeyna, walang problema. Pero noong bandang huli, sabi niya, ‘Eto lang angproblema, lahat ng dialogue, Ilonggo!' Oo lang ako nang oo. Pero later on, ano baang inoohan ko? Maganda nga ang story, e, ‘day, Ilonggo naman ang dialogue!Hindi kaya mamatay-matay ako run?" natatawang kuwento ni Tetchie.

"Together with that, I was teaching three classes and then Iwas doing a teleserye for Channel 2, yung Ligaw na Bulaklak, then we'll shootYanggaw. So, ang daming nangyayari sa buhay ko at that time. So yun angmahirap, yung dialogue."

At present, Tetchie is teaching major Psychology subjects inSt. Joseph College for third and fourth year college students.Nag-graduate siya with a degree in B.S Psychology sa St. Joseph and pursued hermasteral degree at Ateneo de Manila University.

Pero hindi itinanggi ni Tetchie that winning an award wouldinspire her to accept more acting jobs.

"Probably, yes. That would be nice," sambit niya. "I'mslowly inching my way back to the business. Sa totoo lang kasi, hindi ko magawa‘yan noong mas maaga. Yung anak ko, nagpapalaki pa ako. Now, she's 16 andnow na malaki na siya, maayos ko naman siya naaruga. So, unti-unti, binabawi kona yung oras para habulin ang iba ko pang pangarap."

Ano pa ba ang mga pangarap niya?

"Saang aspeto?" natawa niyang tanong. "Siguro habang buhaytayo, hindi tayo nawawalan ng aspiration. Sa panahon ngayon, sa hirap ng buhay,libre na lang ngayon mangarap."

TETCHIE'S DAUGHTER. Ayon kay Tetchie, her daughter China is definitely more starmaterial than her. But when asked kung may plano ba itong mag-artista at sundanang yapak niya, mabilis ang naging tugon niyang sana raw ay wala.

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"Palagay ko, iba ang gustong tahakin ng anak ko," sabi niTetchie. "I raised my daughter to be independent, to be her own person and tofollow her own footsteps and nobody else's. Sa susunod na taon, magigingkolehiyala na siya. Gusto niyang kuhanin business course para eventuallymaging fashion designer siya. Pero ang deal namin, 'Mag-business course ka munafor college and then after that, saka ka mag-fashion designing clothes.'"

Wala ba siyang nakikitang inkling sa anak na maging artista?

"Well, sabi ko nga, sa totoo lang, kung tutuusin, yung anakko mas showbiz material kesa sa akin. Mas maganda siya sa akin. Nagba-balletsiya simula noong tatlong taong gulang siya. Mahusay siyang gumalaw, kumilos,umarte. Nananalo ‘yan ng acting award sa klase niya, pero hanggang doon langsiguro," saad ng aktres.

Bakit ayaw niyang payagan ang anak na mag-showbiz?

"Alam n'yo naman ang industriyang ito can be so cruel,"sagot niya. "And it's not an easy profession to belong with. Ayokongmahirapan ang anak ko. Ayokong maranasan niya yung mga hirap na naranasan ko sashowbiz. I'm hoping that I can give her a better option. Sinabi ko naman sakanya, ‘Anak, kung balang-araw, sasabihin mo sa akin na gusto mong magingartista, papayag ako. Basta anak, tapusin mo ang PhD mo!'

"Alam n'yo naman ang trabahong ito, yung puyatan, longworking hours, unpredictable schedules. Ang hirap ng friendship andinter-relationship. Mahirap lahat ‘yan. At saka, alam n'yo naman kapag artistaka, hindi lang nakataya yung ginawa mong trabaho, pati puri mo nakataya. Andit's so hard pag minsan, you try to do your best, pero marami pa rin angnasasabing hindi magaganda para sa ‘yo, di ba? So, siguro, mas gugustuhinkong ibang landas ang gawin niya, kung ako ang masusunod."

STILL THE ONE TO BEAT. Sa mga artista, kung meron man madalas ginagawang ehemplo ngmga babaeng artista ngayon na nagpo-pose for a sexy magazine, si Tetchie nayata yun. Kahit napakatagal ng panahon na ang lumipas when she became the firstFilipina cover girl of Playboy magazine.

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Ngayong may Playboy Philippines na, ano ang masasabi niya nasiya pa rin ang naiisip na image ng mga artistang babaeng nagpo-pose dito?

"Oo nga, sana nga meron nang sumunod para matabunan na yungakin, di ba? I wouldn't mind at all!" natatawang sabi ni Tetchie.

Ano ang masasabi niya na siya ang ginagawang role model ngkaramihan ng female celebrities na nagpu-pose for sexy magazines?

"Yeah, well, in a way, I must say I'm flattered. And when I look at my pictures now compared to the sexy picturesthat is coming out in all these men's magazines, art yung akin... Sorry lang ha,yung sa akin, it's not to stir imprudent desires. Yung sa akin, wala lang, isalang akong Ebang nag-iisa sa mundo. Ganoon yung motivation ko nang ginawa koyun. It was not to seduce or anything, it was to show the beautiful femaleform. Yun lang ang sa akin."

Kung sakali kaya't ngayong panahon na ito nangyari ang offersa kanya ng Playboy, gagawin niya?

"Actually, I have a standing offer in Playboy Philippines.They interviewed me for the second issue," pagbabalita ni Tetchie.

Ano ang stand niya sa offer?

"I don't like to repeat myself!" tawa niya. "I also don'tlike to repeat my obscenity lawsuit, alam mo yun... I don't want to attractanother Polly Cayetano. Okay na ako. I've done it and I don't wanna repeatmyself."

Matatandaan na na-involve noon si Tetchie sa kontrobersiya dahil sa pag-pose niya sa Playboy. She was accused of obscenity by some moralist groups.

So, it's really a'No'?

"It's still standing, because I didn't say yes. I didn'tsay no... We'll see, we'll see. Pero alam n'yo sa ngayon, sa estado ng pamumuhayko ngayon na isa na akong ina, isa na rin akong guro, iba na, e. Nag-iba na angaspeto ng buhay ko. Kailangan ko ring pag-isipan bago ako gumawa ng ganoongeskandalo."

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If given a chance,mas gusto raw niyang i-handle ang styling ng mga female stars na nagpo-pose ascover girl. In fact, Tetchie even told her co-star in Ligaw na Bulaklak, siRoxanne Guinoo, na next time itong mag-pose, she could do the styling forRoxanne para mas maging maganda pa ang kalabasan.

PAST WITH OGIE. Tinanong din ng PEP si Tetchie kung ano ang masasabi niya saminsang naging revelation ni Ogie Alcasid na nagkaroon sila ng relationship inthe past.

Paliwanag ni Tetchie, "Naging kaibigan ko si Ogie because of his brotherTony, siya ang naging una kong kaibigan. And in the process of us, beingfriends and hanging out together, eventually nakasama ko na rin at nakilala kosi Ogie. We get along quite well and even today, we're fine."

Bakit mukhang kay Ogie lang tumatak na naging sila pala?

"Hindi ko masasagot ‘yan, hindi ko alam," nakangiting sabi ni Tetchie. "Siguro mas maganda kung siya ang magsabi. ‘Eto lang ang masasabiko... I believe I'm from the old school, I believe that a lady should neverspeak. Di ba, a lady should never talk about her personal life? Para sa akin,yun lang ang aking opinion."

Paano sila naging magkaibigan ni Ogie?

"We're berks, we're barkadas. I mean, kasi alam n'yo,mahirap kasing mag-maintain ng relationship sa trabahong ito. Kasi you hop fromone project to another. And every time you have a project, bonded kayo ngkasama mo. And then, you move on. Kahit na love mo yung iniwan mong grupo, youare with a new group, ang hirap. Yun naman ang nature ng showbiz. Buddies kayotoday, then tomorrow, maybe hindi na kayo masyadong nagkikita. Nawawala na.Hindi na masyadong nagkakabarkadahan," paliwanag niya.

Pero umabot ba sila sa point na okey sila, na naging silanga?

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"I don't think na nag-usap kami," ngiti niya. "We just gotalong. Yun lang. Even today, I don't have [anything] negative to say about him. Actually,nang mag-guest ako sa SOP, ganoon pa rin. Kung gaano ka-warm ang amingrelationship noon, ganoon pa rin ang warmest ng aming friendship."

Magkakilala ba sila ni Regine Velasquez, na girlfriend ngayon niOgie?

"Kaibigan ko naman si Regine, e," sagot ni Tetchie. "Kahitna noon, a long, long time ago, bata pa si Regine, kaibigan ko na. Walangproblema. Pareho ko silang binati. Kahit na hindi pa sumasabog ang balita nasila na, binati ko na sila."


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