Former 'It's Showtime' champs now singing for the American dream

By Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN North America Bureau

Jan. 16, 2014

CARSON, Calif. – They were grand champions on this ABS-CBN’s popular noon time variety show “It’s Showtime” in 2012, and now the Gollayan Sisters are ready to bring their sisterly singing to the United States.

Almira, Irene, Mylene, and Celina—ages 18 to 24—came from humble beginnings. Their father supported the family of eight by collecting cans while their mother sold tupperwear and beauty products.

But the girls found joy and success in their voices.

This talent is our source of living in the Philippines and we finished our studies because of our singing and we thank God for this talent,” Almira Cercado Gollayan, the eldest Gollayan Sister, said.

Just weeks after being granted their performance visas, the heavily Filipino populated city of Carson, Calif. honored the Gollayans for showcasing Filipino talent in the community, especially during the 2013 World Championship of Performing Arts—nicknamed the “Olympics of singing”.

“In recognition of your achievement in receiving 24 gold medals in the 2013 World Championship of Performing Arts in singing and dancing, congratulations,” Carson City Mayor Jim Dear said.

“It’s a huge opportunity and a big blessing to be recognized by Carson City, especially Mayor Jim Dear,” Gollayan said. “We haven’t been in the U.S. for very long and we our talent would be so recognized and appreciated.”

After winning 16 medals and four championships at the World Championships of Performing Arts in 2006, the sisters returned to Hollywood last year to bring home 20 golds, four silvers, and four overall championships at the 2013 competitions.

Battle tested from several Philippine-based singing competitions including “It’s Showtime”, competing for high stakes was nothing new to them.

“We learned from ‘Showtime’ and World Championships of Performing Arts, especially WCOP because we joined in 2006 juniors and now they’re giving us a chance to represent the Philippines in the senior division,” Gollayan said. “With the help of Showtime, we learned a lot about discipline and perseverance, and about patience. My sisters and I have been doing this for 10 years, looking for our big break.”

After conquering every major Philippine singing contest and WCOPA, the next gig for the Gollayan sisters is building their American dream while helping the Philippines through their music.

“Our petition is a charity, so half of the proceeds of our concerts got to Philippine Children’s charity,” Gollayan said.

You can contact Steve Angeles at steve_angeles@abs-cbn.com for more information.

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