A CEBUANO singer has given pride to Filipinos after winning at the 7th International Red White Singing Festival held at the concert hall of Youth Education National Olympics Memorial Youth Center in Tokyo, Japan last October 9. Kenichi Go Uang, 27, an associate software engineer from Cebu City, was hailed Best Performer out of 10 non-Japanese singers.
“I thought I really did a good job sa performance. Pero during sa awarding, paspas naman sad gud kaayo ang Japanese and wala na kaayo ko ka-keep up,” Uang told Cebu Daily News.
“There were so many awards because it was like this social multicultural event bitaw so they also want to show appreciation if not to all the performers. I think that is why there were so many awards. Anyway, daghan na bitaw kaayo. It almost felt like wala nay award na mabilin. I was prepared for that. I felt happy and honored that I was able to perform in front of the Japanese people. Pero yeah, sa last part natawag akong pangalan,” he added.
He is also happy with the award since he was the first one to perform on stage.
Winning piece He chose the song “Uroko” by Motohiro Hata which he described as a very uplifting song.
“Aside from the fact that it is very uplifting, the lyrics are very nice. It is a love song,” Uang said.
He was accompanied by a live guitar performance.
“I wanna do that. I performed the song before and instrumental lang. The original singer is a very good guitar player and he has a live version. I saw it as a challenge and something that I wanna try,” Uang said.
Before Uang was sent to Tokyo, he won a local competition held in Cebu City in August 2017.
This provided him the opportunity to join the International Red White Singing Festival in Tokyo.
He also had to prepare mentally as he also admitted that he was not proud of his performance in Cebu because of pressure that he put a lot to himself.
“I think I made a lot of mistakes and I tried to change my perspective. I think maybe I was too focus to get the song right. Katong sa Cebu nga competition I forgot that the music was supposed to be sending a message,” he explained.
After his performance in Tokyo, he received compliments from the Japanese, saying they really felt the song he performed.
Love for Japanese songs
This is not the first time that Uang joined a Japanese singing contest.
He won the Japan-Cebu Karaoke solo category held at the University of the Philippines Cebu in 2014.
In 2015, he also placed second during the J-pop Anime singing contest held in SM Mall of Asia.
Uang admitted that he started to love the Japanese language because of his love for anime when he was younger.
He also used to attend weekly or monthly meetings for Japanese classes.
After International Red White Singing Festival in Tokyo, Uang plans to join a reality television singing competition.