Young singer Kyla admitted feeling nervous before she sang "Lupang Hinirang" at Manny Pacquiao's much-anticipated rematch with Mexican boxing legend Marco Antonio Barrera, held at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas yesterday, October 7 (Philippine time).
"Sobra!" Kyla gushed when asked by Showbiz Central host Raymond Gutierrez if she was nervous during the event.
"Sobra akong giniginaw, hindi ko alam dahil sa kinakabahan ba ko or what. Pero mabuti naman mabait sila dun, lahat ng mga tao dun. Even si Kuya Manny [Pacquiao], before ako kumanta, sa dugout sobra siyang supportive," added Kyla in a phone interview yesterday, October 7, with Showbiz Central.
Her confidence, however, rose in the middle part of the performance, especially when the large Filipino contingent at the venue sang along with her until the final note. Even the foreigners congratulated her for doing a good job.
"Maganda ‘yong reaction nila. Sobra nga akong natuwa dahil pagdating don sa gitna ng song, sinasabayan na nila ako. 'Tapos after kong kantahin, nag-congratulate 'yong mga tao, even 'yong mga Mexicans na nandoon 'tsaka 'yong mga Americans. Sobra akong natuwa!"
DOING HER HOMEWORK. What the entire world saw was just the end product of a grueling preparation leading to the actual event.
Aside from going through an audition to bag the part, Kyla had to endure the added pressure of singing the sacred hymn, deemed by critics as a piece taken for granted by most professional singers today.
Describing her treatment of the song, Kyla revealed that she deliberately slowed down the tempo—perhaps for lyrical clarity purposes—but that she remained faithful to the way it was meant to be performed, as envisioned by composer Julian Felipe.
"Medyo binagalan ko nang konti," she confessed before adding, "Pero I think tama naman na gawing ganun kasi ‘yon naman talaga ‘yong dapat na beat and version."
The petite singer also revealed that she painstakingly studied the National Anthem to properly guide her through.
"Since after nung mga reviews on how you should sing the song, nag-research talaga ako and nagpaturo pa ako," she proudly revealed.
NO DIVA MOMENT. It was this same extensive knowledge that restrained Kyla from going over the top in rendering the anthem.
Some people were of the opinion that Kyla should have taken advantage of the moment by showcasing her vocal abilities to the fullest, instead of controling and moderating her tone.
"I wasn't singing as Kyla, I was singing as a Filipino nation," she explained, "I was representing tayong lahat na Filipino, so hindi ko naman naisip na gawing diva moment 'yon."
And since it was her first time in Las Vegas, Kyla said that she'll go around and enjoy the place first before heading back to Manila on October 11.
"Mag-iikot muna ko sa Las Vegas kasi hindi ko pa nalilibot," said the excited R&B Princess.