Thirteen-year-old Juan Karlos Labajo’s natural charisma is unquestionable.
From The Voice Kids Blind Auditions trailer in May up to the proclamation of the grand champion on Sunday, the Cebuano lad had been winning hearts by hundreds of thousands every day.
Juan Karlos Labajo
(Click thumbnails to enlarge pics)
The Blind Auditions video of him singing Adam Sandler’s Grow Old With You breached the 2-million mark for the reality singing competition on YouTube.
His witticism interspersed with the sad news about his mom’s death in November endeared him more to viewers.
JK hugs then lifts Lyca
As the contest progressed, people saw the other side of him – serious about his craft but easily connects with the audience, well-liked even by the other contestants (both younger and older) and teachable as testified by his coach, rock icon Bamboo Manalac.
JK, Lyca, Darren, Darlene (hidden) in a huddle after the show
JK performed Yesterday by The Beatles for the Power Ballad Round in the Grand Finals, which had him cry towards the end and was not able to answer host Luis Manzano’s question why he cried, but just pointed up as gesture for the reason of his emotion was his mom.
He did Runaway Baby by Bruno Mars in the Upbeat Round, earning accolades from his Coach Bamboo that he made the song his own.
JK and Coach Bamboo
His charm, singing talent and strong stage presence assure him of a career in singing, and surely, as an actor, too, being a total package.
His enigmatic rendition of the song made Lea Salonga comment:
“I’m actually looking at you as a 13-year-old and seeing what you’re going to be like five years from now, ‘yung mga DJ na ‘yan, ‘yung mga… wala, sorry. Their names are going to be erased once you get to that age…”
Fans of heartthrob Daniel Padilla (also known by his nickname, DJ, for Daniel John) immediately took to social media to voice their reaction to the Broadway star’s candid comment.
Lea did not have to wait for more reactions and posted on Twitter and Facebook:
“Ohhh dear… I offer my deepest apologies to Daniel P and his fans. In building up JK I neglected to think that I might hurt other people.”
Daniel, meanwhile, said Lea’s comment did not offend him and there was no need to explain or apologize for as his mom Karla Estrada (also a singer-actress who started out as That’s Entertainment talent) has high regards for the original Miss Saigon.
JK’s swag is all his own
JK can fill a room merely by his presence, illuminates it some more when he sings, then brings the heat when he moves.
On Sunday, he performed Eto Na Naman with Mr. Pure Energy Gary Valenciano – the only upbeat number among them four Grand Finalists.
‘TVK’ Hosts and Coaches with ABS-CBN Execs Gabby Lopez (extreme left) and Cory Vidanes (extreme right)
Ranked third after Lyca Gairanod and Darren Espanto (both of Team Sarah) when the votes were tallied choosing the Top 4 out of the Top 6, the ranking never changed on Grand Champion Night.
Lyca was declared the first-ever The Voice Kids Grand Champion.
Upon the announcement, JK immediately hugged and lifted the nine-year-old tyke from Cavite, as if she’s his younger sister and not a competitor at all.
‘TVK’ Season 1 Big 4
JK’s gesture was praiseworthy as it’s a display of his innate goodness. Though barely noticed by the diehards, some took their hats off and lauded the young man for it.
Even at the After Party, where Lyca expressed her gratitude to all those who supported and voted for her, it was JK who led in the performances along with members of Team Bamboo and their beloved coach.
Seeing Double with Darren Espanto
Shows and guestings have been lined up for the The Voice Kids Top 4 in the coming days.
One of these is the Charity Concert of The Voice Kids.
Dubbed Boses Ng Bulilit, Kami Ulit the concert features the Top 4 (Lyca, Darren, JK, Darlene), the coaches (Sarah, Bamboo and Lea) and Kapamilya artists. This is for the benefit of the victims of recent Typhoon Glenda.
(Call 0937-411-4850 and look for JM Lafuente for ticket inquiries and reservations)
Click links to watch JK’s Grand Finals videos:
JK with Lyca’s parents
‘Eto Na Naman’ with Gary Valenciano
Announcement of Grand Champion
Teaser video, now with almost 2,400,000 views
Full Blind Auditions
Battles Round, ‘A Thousand Years’ with Julienne and Maite
Sing-Off Round, ‘Stay’
Announcement of Team Bamboo Final 2
Semi-Finals Round, ‘Sway’
Top 6 Boys, ‘One Way Or Another’ with Darren and Tonton
Related stories in this blog:
Get to know JK once again thru his slam book
- Despite not winning ‘The Voice Kids’ title: Singing heartthrob Darren is staying and may try acting, too! https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/29/despite-not-winning-the-voice-kids-title-singing-heartthrob-darren-is-staying-and-may-try-acting-too/
- ‘Little Superstar’ wins: Lyca Gairanod is ‘The Voice Kids’ grand champion! https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/27/little-superstar-lyca-gairanod-is-the-voice-kids-grand-champion/
- Darren asserts supremacy in both rounds of ‘The Voice Kids’ grand finals performances https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/26/darren-asserts-supremacy-in-the-voice-kids-grand-finals-performances/
- Darren to give house to Lyca, musical set to Darlene, money to church if he wins ‘The Voice Kids’ https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/24/darren-to-give-house-to-lyca-musical-set-to-darlene-money-to-church-if-he-wins-the-voice-kids/
- Canada-based Pinoy singing sensation Darren Espanto sets social media afire with ‘The Voice Kids’ blind audition, chooses Sarah G. as coach https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/06/03/canada-based-pinoy-singing-sensation-darren-espanto-sets-social-media-afire-with-the-voice-kids-blind-audition-chooses-sarah-g-as-coach/
- ‘The Voice Kids’ Big 4: Lyca, Darren, Juan Karlos, Darlene in grand finlas! https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/20/the-voice-kids-big-4-lyca-darren-juan-karlos-darlene-in-grand-finals/
- Darlene, Tonton, JK, Edray, Lyca & Darren battle for supremacy in ‘The Voice Kids’ live semifinals https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/19/darlene-tonton-jk-edray-lyca-darren-battle-for-vocal-supremacy-in-the-voice-kids-live-semifinals/
- Darren, Lyca banner Team Sarah in ‘The Voice Kids’ semis https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/13/darren-lyca-banner-team-sarah-in-the-voice-kids-semis/
- Lea, Bamboo ‘The Voice Kids’ semis bets chosen; Sarah’s known this weekend https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/07/09/lea-bamboo-the-voice-kids-semis-bets-chosen-sarahs-known-this-weekend/
- ‘The Voice Kids’ amazing discoveries ensure steady supply of singing superstars https://arloc888.wordpress.com/2014/06/27/the-voice-kids-amazing-discoveries-ensure-steady-supply-of-singing-superstars/
Photos and videos from https://www.facebook.com/TheVoiceABSCBN and The Voice Kids PH YouTube Channel