MANILA, Philippines ? Kris Aquino was supposed to be one of the hosts of ABS-CBN Foundation?s 20th anniversary program on Friday night. But the TV host begged off to spend time with her ailing mother, former President Cory Aquino, who is still confined in the hospital.
An insider source said Kris canceled the hosting gig on Wednesday shortly after her mother?who has been battling colon cancer for more than a year?was brought to the intensive care unit of the Makati Medical Center.
At the Meralco Theater that Friday night, hosting chores were divided among TV Patrol co-anchor Karen Davila, ?Game Ka Na Ba?? host Edu Manzano and news reporter Atom Araullo.
The show opened with Tony Award-winning actress and Inquirer columnist Lea Salonga singing ?Magsimula Ka,? accompanied on piano by composer Ryan Cayabyab.
A video on the beginnings of the foundation?which aims to provide a better quality of life for Filipino children?was shown.
Kapamilya network president Charo Santos-Concio, in her opening speech, thanked the ?selfless people who have worked so hard for the foundation.?
?Star in a Million: Season 1? winner Erik Santos performed ?Don?t Stop Believing? with ?Goin? Bulilit? stars Kristel Fulgar, Hopia Legaspi and Elisa Pineda.
Six-year-old Amy Nobleza of ?Pinoy Dream Academy Little Dreamer? wowed the crowd with her rendition of ?I Got to Believe? along with Rap Salazar and Makisig Morales.
The Dawn vocalist Jett Pangan was awesome in his version of ?Magnificent,? while theater stalwarts Isay Alvarez, Menchu Lauchengco-Yulo, Audi Gemora, Michael Williams, Robert Seña, Bituin Escalante and Anna Fegi did an impressive medley of Burt Bacharach songs.
Kuh Ledesma sang an inspirational number titled ?It?s About Time? with daughter Isabella. Gary Valenciano had a duet with youngest child Kiana in ?The Climb.?
?Pinoy Dream Academy? graduates Liezel Garcia, Cris Pastor, Miguel Mendoza, Chivas Malunda and Sen Nichols performed a medley of songs on unity and love for the environment: ?Hawak Kamay,? ?Masdan Mo Ang Kapaligiran,? ?Noong Unang Panahon? and ?Paraiso.?
Arguably the highlight of the two-hour show was the surprise performance of Charice Pempengco. Dressed in a fuschia ruffled tube dress and black wedges, Charice sang ?Note to God,? a cover of a Dianne Warren composition which is her first single from a forthcoming album she is currently recording in the United States.
Dolphy led the encore in singing ?Heal the World.? He also delivered the program?s closing address. He said it?s the dream of artists like him to ?impart good values to kids and leave a good memory.?
He added: ?The foundation has become an instrument of spreading these good values. I?m thankful that I?m part of it.?
Ai Ai de las Alas talked about the families aided by Bayan Microfinance.
John Lloyd Cruz discussed the impact of E-Media, the pioneer in curriculum-based educational television (ETV).
?Umagang Kay Ganda? co-host and newscaster Bernadette Sembrano talked about Sagip Kapamilya, while Anne Curtis spoke of how the La Mesa Watershed was rehabilitated through Bantay Kalikasan.
Willie Revillame introduced Bayanijuan, a program that helped establish communities like Bicol, Pampanga and Puerto Princesa.
Last month, Gina Lopez, managing director of ABS-CBN Foundation, launched the Kapit Bisig Para sa Ilog Pasig project, which aims to rehabilitate the Pasig River and its tributaries.