Eighteen-year-old Yeng Constantino still has many goals to fulfill. The Grand Star Dreamer of Pinoy Dream Academy (PDA) intends to pursue a career in music, put up a restaurant in Marikina City, and open her own band studio. These dreams might seem lofty for some but for this former resident of Montalban (now Rodriguez), Rizal, no aspiration is unreachable when you have your heart in the right place.
In her solo press con at 9501 Restaurant at the ABS-CBN compound earlier today, June 6, the singer-songwriter told PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) about her aspirations for the future.
"Gusto ko po, music talaga. Gusto kong matutong bumasa ng mga nota. Para kung matapos man 'yong karera ko...hindi naman kasi panghabangbuhay ‘to. At least maging musikero pa rin ako, kasi ito naman talaga ang linya ko, nandito 'yong puso," shares Yeng.
With her first major concert entitled Rock Enroll: Yeng's Rock to School (Back to School) Concert scheduled on June 23, Yeng feels pressured but excited at the same time. The concert, which will take place at the Aliw Theater, is directed by no less than Mr. Johnny Manahan.
"May 19 prods [production numbers] po ako dito at lahat kasama ako," she points out. "Siguro po may five costume changes ako."
Her guests include Chris Cayzer, former PDA scholars Ronnie Liang and Jay-R Siaboc, Ruben Caballero and Jay Justiniani of Cuéshe, as well as Mark Tupaz of Shamrock.
NO TO HOME STUDY. The top scholar of PDA says that she prefers to enroll in a regular school instead of taking a home study course. "Ayoko ng home study kasi ‘pag home study, sa bahay mo rin gagawin yung homework and exams mo. Ayoko ng tinitingnan yung mga sagot sa libro. Saka gusto ko may mga kaklase, masaya yun eh. ‘Pag hindi na ako ganun ka-busy, mage-enroll po ako," she says, smiling.
Yeng, already a high school graduate, openly admitted that she tried to get into college but she was unable to get into the school of her choice. "UP [University of the Philippines] po. Kaso nga lang, nung unang UPCAT [UP College Admissions Test] ko, bumagsak po ako. Tres po 'yong nakuha ko dun, e. Baka mag-try po ko ulit.
"Noong year 2004, nag-UPCAT po ako...hindi ako pumasa, e. Kaya hindi natuloy. Tapos sabi naman nila, hindi naman daw po talaga kailangan 'yong UPCAT sa Music. Kailangan talaga medyo marunong ka lang magbasa ng nota. Kaya ‘yon po ang inaral ko. Nag-piano lesson kaso nga hindi namin kinaya kasi medyo mahal—P700 per session," narrates Yeng.
With values such as these—a willingness to continue her education and a passion for her chosen career—Yeng is being hailed as a good role model for the Filipino youth today.