Halfway through the competition, when the challenges became more intense, Sophie Albert, 21, kept fighting. She said from the beginning that she was “ready to fight” and “ready to win.”
It was during the announcement of the Top 6 Honor Students that Artista Academy critic Wilma Galvante said that she did not expect the sweet-faced Sophie to be a stand- out.
The former GMA-7 executive said, “Naipakita niya na puwede din siyang maging consistent sa dancing, sa acting, at sa total performance sa entablado.”
Sophie, like Bianca Reyes prior to entering the TV-5 star reality search, proved her true grit towards the end of the 17-week tutelage.
On awards night, she was hailed Best Actress, emerging the grand winner alongside her loveteam partner Vin Abrenica who was named Best Actor.
Besting 14 competitors, facing the critics during the weekly Live Exams, and managing to not succumb to the contest’s pressure was certainly no easy feat. But Sophie did the impossible.
In an interview with PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) a week prior to the finals, the 5’8” stunner said she was never complacent with her weekly performances, even when she succeeded in pleasing the judges.
“Every time I watch my performances kasi, I always see what I’m doing wrong. So, I [see] the things na kailangan ko i-improve. Pero I’m happy na people appreciate it,” she said.
While her performance of Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” established that she can be that badass entertainer too, Sophie has ascertained that her forte is drama.
“Yung mabibigat,” she stated in the same interview. “Dun ako nag-eenjoy kasi dun yung challenge talaga.”
Perhaps it is not even a challenge for the sentimental Sophie who can effortlessly be one with the emotions of a character she is asked to portray.
“I’m very iyakin. I’m emotional,” she told PEP.
“When I see someone crying, I already cry.
“So me, with the script, dun ko parang I put myself in the shoes of … kung minsan naiiyak na ako by reading the script pa lang.”
One can suspect that Sophie’s ability to quickly empathize with her character is that she knows real life drama.
Behind Sophie’s innocent and happy demeanor lies a sad fact of life— her father has been comatose for 11 years now and all this time her mother has been raising her single-handedly.
Nonetheless, life seems to be good to this Mandaluyong-based newbie, schooled in an international school and who, as recent news items say, happens to be related to the influential Cojuangco clan.
Despite her connections, Sophie is bent on making a name for herself. She knows where her passion lies— definitely in becoming an artist.
“For me I think there are many celebrities but you can only count yung mga artista talaga— artist.
“I wanna be an artist. I wanna be a really good actor. And that’s what I’m hoping for, that’s what I’m studying for.
“I wanna be a good actress, that I can be here for a long time and at the same time someone who stays humble.”
Sophie foresees how the glitzy glamor of showbiz can change her.
She likewise relayed how overwhelming it is to have people recognize her and ask that their picture be taken with her at the onset of her promising career.
“It’s all gonna go into your head, e… parang sobrang bilis. Sometimes it’s just so fast, it happens so fast we forget to be grateful,” she pointed out.
“So, for me, I just wanna stay the same.”
The combination of humility and a pretty face may take Sophie far, but it’s her burning desire to fulfill her dreams that will lead her to stardom.
“It’s passion more than anything,” said Sophie, who has come a long way from doing commercials.
“It’s really passion more than the money, more than the fame. It’s something I enjoy doing so much.”
It’s interesting to note that Artista Academy is Sophie’s first contest— “I don’t know how contests go. [This is my] first contest and I made it this far.
“I’m really proud of myself.”