From being the "bente pesos" guy in an ice-cream TV commercial to becoming a StarStruck Avenger, Sef Cadayona is now of GMA's fast-rising comedians.
He was one of the early evicted survivors in the reality based-artista search StarStruck V, but that didn’t dissuade him from pursuing his dream—to become a comedian.
In an exclusive interview with PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) during Zen Festival 2015, at Green Sun, Makati City, on August 29, Sef recounted how he joined StarStruck V.
"I think nag-e-air na 'ata yung commercial ko that time na Selecta Cornetto.
"And then, they were asking me if I want to go to the special audition for the parang commercial artists ganyan, and I said no kasi ayaw ko pumila ng isang buong araw."
But eventually, he went to the audition.
“Then, they were asking me, ‘why?’
"‘Tapos sabi ko, hindi ba mas masarap ang tagumpay kapag naghirap ka...'
“So there, yung passion ko sa dream ko na maging comedian is medyo mataas kaya pinaghirapan ko yung StarStruck."
FUNNY SEF. Given what he has achieved so far, malayo na ang narating ng bente pesos ni Sef.
Aside from being a good dancer, Sef is naturally funny.
“Here and there, nag-i-spit ako ng joke.
“Eventually noong nandito na ako sa GMA, dun ko lang na-realize na even sa mga staff, may bina-bluff kaya 'yong career path ko dumederecho.”
Where does he get inspiration for his punch lines?
“Mostly with the people I talk with [sic]. Lahat naman tayo may nakakatawang experience tayo, ako lang, mine-memorize ko yun para mai-act ko yun."
He added, “Nanonood ako ng mga comedy shows before [umarte] para at least nasa good mood na ako, natatawa na ako dere-derecho."
DREAM. BELIEVE. SURVIVE. It has been six years since he joined StarStruck, but the show's motto—"dream, believe, and survive"—he said, has remained relevant to his life.
Asked about his current dream for his showbiz career, he answered, "Makapag-produce ng movie na siyempre comedy.
“Lahat ng mga heroes ko sa comedy ay kaming mga bagong generation na comedians.”
He may have waited quite a while before his big break came, but Sef had kept on believing that “timing is everything.”
After portraying side-kick roles in different GMA shows, he is now playing the lead role in Juan Tamad, the television remake of a Pinoy comedy film in the 90s.
He continued, “I think nasa tamang timing na dumating si Juan Tamad sa buhay ko.
“Nake-cater especially to the kids na yun nga at the same time it’s funny pero punung-puno ng values.
“I think it is the perfect for them to enjoy watching Juan Tamad."
His showbiz journey, Sef said, is like surviving a series of challenges.
“Siyempre yung mga struggles ng lahat ng artista, I am sure lahat naman mayroon pero iba-iba lang. Di naman natin maiiwasan ‘yan.
"Yung sa mga sad times and saka mga dark times natin, ang kailangan natin, you harness it para magawan natin ng positive outlook, ganun lang di ba...Gulong ng palad.
“Pero yung sa akin, just to be motivated, to survive, and stay motivated, ang importante lang naman kasi ay mag-aral lang nang mag-aral.
"Tulad sa school, kung nag-aaral kayo sa school, kami naman nag-aaral kami ng mga ways para makapagpatawa."
Lastly, he stressed, “Kailangan ma-survive kong mapatawa ang lahat.”