By Don Tagala, ABS CBN North America Bureau

Tony Award winning Lea Salonga is back in New York, performing at the classy Carlyle Cafe for an intimate and enchanting show.
“Back to Before” is a tribute to her idols Barbara Streisand and Ella Fitzgerald, music icons who inspired her to become the amazing singer that she is now.

The show is also about Lea’s love for New York, the city she calls home whenever she’s in the U.S.

“I’m glad that work takes me back to New York City very very often,” she said, “last January I was at the Lincoln Center for the American Songbook Series, in February it was a special concert of Ragtime at the Avery Fisher Hall and for the last 3 weeks I have been in rehearsal for the Lab project of Allegiance.”

Salonga sang a touching ballad about a childless woman, reminding her how precious her 7 year old daughter Nicole is, whom she said is now singing songs from Les Miserable off book.

“You start to see thing differently, you try to figure out what’s more important in your life, is it family? Is it Career? All you know is that everything now revolves around this little being,” she said.

The pride of the Philippines is expected to return to Broadway next year in a new musical called ‘Allegiance’, developed by “Star Trek” actor George Takei and co-stars Telly Leung.

Salonga said she is also excited to be one of the celebrity mentors in the Philippine version of the US hit show “The Voice” along with Apl de Ap, Sarah Geronimo and Bamboo.

“I have been loving called “the bitch of the red chair,” actually The Voice is giving me an opportunity to do something that I’ve been able to do– to coach or mentor another singer and other singers, that’s a huge responsibility,” she said.

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