Hanoi-based Filipina Janice Buco Phuong is 2016's 'Vietnam Idol'
- 'Vietnam Idol' is the Vietnamese take on 'American Idol', one of the longest-running singing contest franchises in the world
- 28-year-old Pinay Janice Buco Phuong won its seventh season, becoming its first foreign contestant and winner
- The Bohol native shared her journey on 'Rated K'
Janice Buco Phuong broke records with her win - not only is she the first Filipina and foreign contestant of 'Vietnam Idol', she has also become its first Filipina and foreign winner.
The 28-year-old Boholana took a chance of a lifetime as she auditioned for the show despite her poor grasp of the language.
She sang a Vietnamese love song, 'Cam On Tinh Yeu', as her audition piece which rendered the judges speechless.
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Her journey in the popular singing contest franchise was far from easy - she had to leave her job to focus on improving her Vietnamese.
Prior to the competition, she worked as a bar songstress while her Vietnamese husband acted as her guitarist.
She competed against nationals, which made her believe that the highest reward she could ever get was only second place.
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"Napakasaya ko po na natanggap ako doon pero hindi ko in-expect na matatanggap po ako dahil hindi po nila required na sumali 'yung mga foreigners. Pero nagpapasalamat po ako dahil binigyan nila ako ng chance," she said during her 'Rated K' feature last Sunday.
(I am very happy that I got accepted there but I did not expect that I will be since they did not require foreigners to join the contest. But I am still thankful that they gave me a chance.)
Her hard work paid off when she was required to sing in the national language. She revealed that she did not complain and just did what was asked of her.
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It has been a month since her win, but she still could not believe that she was able to beat a 22-year-old local.
"Sobrang saya. Hindi ko po maipaliwanag. Dapat ipakita natin na tayong mga Pilipino, wala tayong inaatrasan kahit anong laban pa iyan," she enthused.
(I am still over the moon. I can't really explain it. We should show that we Filipinos should not back out whatever fight we get into.)
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Janice has truly made us proud with her monumental win, like others who came before her who also won or topped international singing contests.
She has shown us that despite her halting Vietnamese, she has pushed herself to learn how to sing the language like any ordinary local. She is similar to this paralyzed girl who persevered to reach her goal.
Here is a clip of Janice performing on the show, belting out Adele's comeback single 'Hello'.
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