People tend to forget that Bea Alonzo is just 22.
And that's because the role that launched her to stardom was Katrina Argos, a 20-year-old law student, in Kay Tagal Kang Hinintay. Would you believe she was only 15 then? Bea chose to defy the stereotype before it could pin her down by portraying mature roles.
People may think she's older, but Cosmopolitan-Philippineshas discovered the she's older not just in terms of talent, but in wisdom as well.
ON SEEKING SUCCESS. Seven years in Philippine showbiz taught her a lot about life. "'Wag mamadaliin yung mga bagay," she says, when asked about her advice to other women seeking success. "Laging mayroong perfect time for every single thing in this life. In God's time, lahat ng gusto mo, as long as you have good intentions, makukuha mo."
Getting what you want isn't easy, though. "We work almost 24 hours a day, every single day," she says of her life in showbiz. Being famous also has its price. "Before ko pa pinasok 'to, na-foresee ko na mawawalan talaga ako ng privacy. It's part of our job. So hindi ako puwede magreklamo doon."
BEING AN ACTRESS. Fame may have its downside, but there are many things Bea loves about being an actress. "I love that it's spontaneous. I love that it's not like office work na routine," she says. She thinks that as the world changes, the stories being told and the characters she portrays change, too. "Nag-e-evolve how we inspire people. Nag-e-evolve yung stories, and I just love that about our job. That it's not boring at all."
Acting has been something like an escape for the ABS-CBN star. "You get to be another person who has a lot of problems that are different from your problems. It's like my outlet...that I get to not think about my personal problems because I'm thinking about the problems of the character," she explains.
So far, so good for the young actress who has enjoyed an almost scandal-free career and a squeaky-clean image. Does she consider herself a role model?
She replies, "I don't know...But I am trying to be a role model. Every single day, I try to be a better person. I don't trust myself with that responsibility yet. Uunahin ko yung sarili ko bago ko isipin na gayahin ako ng maraming tao."
COMPETING WITH HERSELF. It's easy to assume that Bea's star will be hitched high for a long time to come, given what she's already achieved, but she is humble about her place on the showbiz hierarchy. "[In] every profession siguro, nag-a-apply 'to, na you can't be assured na you're going to be here forever. Alam mo na in the future, marami pang darating, marami pang mas maganda, mas magaling. What you can do is just to improve yourself and be passionate," Bea says.
One thing she doesn't do is to compare herself with other people. "Just compete with yourself. Kasi kapag nakatingin ka sa ibang tao, nawawala ka sa sarili mo. Parang you focus on what they do and not on what you do."
CHOOSING INDEPENDENCE. Aside from her glittering showbiz career, Bea is proud that she is her family's breadwinner. Despite her busy schedule, she has managed to graduate from college. But one of the things that she's most proud of is her independence.
She took a big risk, moving out to live on her own at the age of 19. "I didn't care about what people would say about me. Kasi in our world, pag umalis ka na sa shelter ng parents mo at that age, sasabihin nila you just wanted to do something wild," she explains.
But Bea had no intentions of going wild and partying hard. "Hindi nila maintindihan that you just want to be independent. I didn't have the image of Angelica Panganiban or Anne Curtis. At that time, mas close-minded pa yung fans ko, [parang] 'O, dapat ano ka, good girl!'" It is by far the most fearless thing she's done.
When asked if there's anything she still wants to try, Bea gushes about how much she used to want to go skydiving. "It's always been a mystery to me, kung ano yung pakiramdam. So maybe I will in the future, but as of the moment, hindi pa."
Bea Alonzo doesn't need to know what it feels like to fly. She's already soaring high.