THE 20-year-old pride of Biliran, Gretchen Espina, was named last Sunday as the first-ever “Pinoy Idol,” garnering the highest text votes.
Gretchen bested Jayann Bautista from Pampanga in the final two while the Rocker from Cagayan de Oro Ram Chaves ended up third.
Since the beginning of the singing competition, Gretchen was supported by the power of text votes as she managed to maintain her spot until the end. She was also the only Idol who was not included in the bottom list during the elimination.
But Gretchen’s spot in the final three was tainted with controversy as many had contested that she only got the place not because she deserves it but due to her father’s influence, who is the governor of Biliran Province.
Reports also said Gretchen is one of the top finalists in the local version of “Vote for the Worst,” which is a campaign for the worst contestant to win the “Pinoy Idol” show.
Ignoring all criticisms, Gretchen tried to prove last Sunday that she deserves the title as she gave her best performance during her Final Showdown with Jayann.
The three judges of the show – Ogie Alcasid, Jolina Magdangal, and Wyngard Tracy – who were earlier not convinced with Gretchen’s singing talent, even said she was a “revelation” and a “champion” that night.
Gretchen went home with the biggest prize package in the history of local singing competitions including: P1 million in cash from SM Supermall, a recording contract from Sony BMG, a management contract from GMA Artist Center, a brand new car courtesy of Mitsubishi, and a house and lot courtesy of Avida Towers.
The final results night were held at SMX of the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City.
For their final performance, the top 24 finalists were grouped in fours and performed with Hajji Alejandro, Jett Pangan, Vernie Varga, and Duncan Ramos.
Other rock bands like Pupil, Callalily, and Rivermaya also rendered special performances for the devoted followers of “Pinoy Idol”. (JRDB/Sunnex)