Rose Fostanes, a 45 year old caregiver with no “star” quality in her personality dished out “My Way,” one of the most annoying song which, if she belted it out in a karaoke bar, she would be shot. Good, Rose sang it on the X-Factor singing contest in Israel. She shot to fame instead.
Rose Fostanes duplicated the feat of Susan Boyle, another single, matronly, shy, looking woman who became famous after she joined in “British Got Talents” of the United Kingdom.
The two unlikely “star” have one thing in common. Both possess a good singing voice and their background stories had an element of human interest stories which sucked up sympathy from the TV audience.
Exquisite talent plus juicy story equals fame. That seems to be the trend these days. The combination is becoming like a secret formula. Charisse Pempenco and Arnel Pineda followed the same line. And now comes the latest in the roster, Rose Fostanes. The three of them defied the stereotyped definition of a “Star” – tall, thin, sexy, attractive, talented, beautiful. Their defiance mixed with their personal juicy stories that relates is more than enough to generate sympathy. And then throw in their exquisite singing voice. Voila! Fame.
The irony, however, is this. This “star” defiance plus talent is not applicable in the Philippines. As Rose Fostanes said in one of her interviews, “she often time felt discriminated against joining the singing contest because she doesn’t have the look. And my joining in the Israel X-Factor is my last chance”. Good for her. She’s gutsy!
One would only have a shot to be famous in the Philippines, once one broke into the international scene. Like, this is now the rule. This seems to be another trend. Charisse and Arnel had been through this, and now, Rose Fostanes. Does this mean that the Philippines is discriminatory to their own with regard to the arts? This observation is true too in the field of film. Brillante Mendoza only gets famous in the Philippines when he won the Cannes Best Director Award in 2009, with his film “Kinatay”.
Another irony is when an artist gets the nod of the international community, a teeming bandwagon mentality all agog in appreciation. They all sing “halleluiahs” with nationalistic flavor as if it is because of their support that the artist get famous when the truth is they discriminate them at first.
This serves as a challenge to Rose Fostanes like the millions of OFW’s around the world. Just that appreciation of their talents without the pre-condition attached, and the nation’s lack of opportunity to make a decent living necessitated for her to leave her families and love ones is a challenge of a lifetime. It requires guts, fortitude, sacrifice and spirit.
And now that Rose and the millions like her surpassed that challenges, her compatriots and her country are not even feel guilty. They even have that temerity to claim in disguise that it is as if they are the ones responsible for Rose and the millions other’s success.