Bared... Music is life, ask Malou

Tagbilaran, Tuesday, 27 March 2012 06:34:09

FLASH REPORT: Shamcey Supsup chosen as graduation speaker

Miss Universe 2011 3rd runner-up Shamcey Gurrea Supsup will share her thoughts on life and success with this year's graduating class at the 142nd commencement ceremony on March 27, 4 p.m. at the UB quadrangle, the Office of the University Registrar announced last week.

Shamcey Supsup graduated magna cum laude from the University of the Philippines and topnotcher in the June 2010 Architect Licensure Exam.

"When we choose a speaker, we think of who is right for the time," UB Registrar Leah Tirol-Magno said. "We choose Miss Shamcey Supsup because aside from her outstanding academic achievements and Miss Universe beauty, she is proud to be a Christian."

You and me against the world
Sometimes it seems like you and me against the world
And for all the times we've cried I always felt that
God was on our side.

And when one of us is gone
And one of us is left to carry on
Then remembering will have to do
Our memories alone will get us through
Think about the days of me and you
Of you and me against the world.

Those lines from the song You and Me against the World by Helen Reddy take on a deeper meaning vis-a-vis Maria Lourdes "Malou" Brunidor Cempron's life. "This song is dedicated to my unica hija. It tells about strength. My daughter and I both held on together at the time her father left us for somebody."

Paano kita mapasasalamatan
Sa puso mong sa 'kin ibinigay
Ngayon lamang ako nagmahal nang tunay
Sa tanang aking buhay
Sapat na ba na ako ay mangako
Mananatili ka dito sa 'king puso
Paano kita mapasasalamatan
Sapat na bang mahalin lang kita

Malou's winning piece, "Paano Kita Mapapasalamatan" by Kuh Ledesma, won her first place in Ang Bagong Kampeon (The New Champion) in 1984. It was a national amateur singing contest aired on RPN (now Solar TV) hosted by the late Bert "Tawa" Marcelo and Pilita Corrales.

Malou with Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes.

Her inclusion in the national singing tilt was a blessing in disguise. Malou went to Manila to sing in the wedding of Balilihan Vice Mayor Efren and Nikki Chatto. Just when Malou was ready to go back to Bohol, the late assemblyman Eladio "Kiking" Chatto, convinced her to try out for Bagong Kampeon. Bohol's First Lady Pureza Veloso-Chatto accompanied her to Broadcast City Channel 9. Aspiring singers from the country filled the place, all hoping for a guaranteed audition in the televised Bagong Kampeon tryout. Out of 75 auditioneers only 5 passed and she was one of the lucky 5.

Music lovers said that Malou's entry to the contest was unfavorable. It was a nice performance but the timing's wrong because the defending champion had only one week to qualify for the grand finals. Ryan Cayabyab, one of the judges, called her after the contest and gave her an open date to join again without audition anymore. She claimed the first place Bagong Kampeon in 1984.

"Big deal di ba? Not anybody could be given that chance. I was lucky then to be offered. I won first place that week I joined the contest," Malou recalled.

Malou really hasn't slowed down since taking home the Bagong Kampeon. On May 16, 1983, Malou's rendition of "Dito Ba" won her 3rd place in the 1st Bohol Minus One Singing tilt. She was the only female contestant to make it to the magic three among the 48 contestants around Bohol. It was sponsored by the Silliman University Kadugong Bol-anon (headed by Niza Reselosa Bagares) and dyRD. It was hosted by Bohol's Queen of All Media Ardy Araneta-Batoy and Kiss FM dj Nelson Jabonite. The jurors were topnotch musician Atty. Elpidio Biliran and Victoria Modequillo Chatto.

Maria Lourdes "Malou"
Brunidor Cempron: 'My life
would be empty without it.'

In 1984, Malou was declared champion in Bohol PRISAA Literary Musical Contest singing "Ako Ang Nagwagi, Ako Ang Nasawi" by Dulce.

In 1987 to 1989, she was hired to sing backup vocals for noted musician Tex Cimafranca in the many songs he composed for Manila artists.

Malou is also a sough-after judge in singing contests. Before Luke Mejares conquered Manila, Malou used to be one of the judges in the many contests he joined. It was also Malou who advised Star in a Million grand champion Jerome Sala to sing One in a Million when he was joining amateur contests in Bohol.

Music is life. Ask Malou.

"Music is like second skin to me," said Malou. "My life would be empty without it."

As a child, Malou aspired to be a singer. She possesses a soprano vocal range and has been referred to as "the little girl with a sparkling voice" and a blue eyed soul singer. After winning in a national contest, Malou received offers but she didn't let herself be affected by the klieg lights and cameras rolling and she remained as humble as ever.

Malou is busy working as election assistant II at the Provincial COMELEC for 20 years, and yet she still finds time to sing.

Find out more about Malou as she completes the following sentences:

I hate people who are... insincere and discourteous.

I avoid people who are not... respectful especially to elders or persons in authority.

My greatest pleasure is... when I won first place in the Bagong Kampeon singing competition in Manila which was hosted by no less than Ms. Pilita Corrales and with Mr. Ryan Cayabyab as chairman of the board of judges.

My worst moment...was the time I got real sick in 2009.

My biggest fear... my biggest fear is to lose my singing voice.

The most important person in my life is... my daughter is the most impt person in my whole life.

If I were to be reincarnated as an animal I would be... a bird because birds fly freely.

My most traumatic experience was... when my daughter was diagnosed of idiopathic seizure disorder while in high school.

I deal with gossip by..., dedma na lng. Gossips don't bother me at all.

The one thing I can't live without is... my mobile phone. It's my only way to get in touch with anybody anytime of the day.

Am I afraid of growing old?... I am definitely not afraid of growing old in fact I'm excited to grow old with my loved ones.

The type of guys that turns me on... I go for the musically inclined, smart and God-fearing dudes.

The type of guys that turn me off... intimidating ones are a no-no to me absolutely.

My philosophy in life is... no guts no glory!

I lose my temper when... I lose my temper in people who can't follow instructions very well.

If I were somebody else I'd be... Mother Teresa, a very gentle woman who has a big heart that bleeds for the poor.

I am happiest when... I when all of my loved ones are in the pink of health especially my unica hija.

I'm saddest when... I've hurt anybody .

My ultimate goal in life is... to witness the graduation of my daughter.

Last thing that I do before I go to sleep?. . To say my prayers is always the last thing I do before I sleep.

First thing I do after I wake up? I pray to thank the Lord for giving me another day in my life.

How do you cope with stress? stress? I lift it up to HIM up above who gives me strength .

My favorite hideaway is... my bedroom at home is my paradise it's where I listen to music .

My love life is... Secret hmmm.

Do I prefer a younger man, somebody my age or somebody older? Well, my answer is a big BOTH.

Thanks for your letters, all will be answered. Comments welcome at, follow leoudtohan at Twitter/ Facebook.

Leo P. Udtohan