Filipino shadow play performers El Gamma Penumbra, who wowed the audience and the judges with their dancing silhouettes that gives life to socially relevant issues, bagged the first Asia's Got Talent title, which aired Thursday night on cable channel AXN. Mongolian ethnic band Khugsugtun ethnic band came in second.
El Gamma Penumbra, from Tanauan, Batangas in the Philippines, bested nine other grand finalists, including three other acts from the Philippines: classical singer Gerphil Flores, pop singer Gwyneth Dorado, and street dance crew Junior New System, reported GMA Network News.
The shadow play troupe El Gamma Penumbra, will take home the $100,000 grand prize money as well as a contract to perform at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.
The crowd, including Asia's Got Talent judge Anggun, was so moved they were left to tears as El Gamma Penumbra paid tribute to Mother Nature with their shadow play to the tune of "Colors of the Wind." Their winning piece tackled several global issues such as illegal poaching, dynamite fishing, super typhoons and the rising flood levels.
"I promised not to cry tonight," Anggun said while holding back tears after the astounding performance of El Gamma Penumbra during the grand finals competition aired on May 7, "Our job as entertainers, if you can raise awareness on important issues, like Mother Nature and animals, that will make our job more noble," a very emotional Aggun said. Anggun pressed the coveted "golden buzzer" that sent El Gamma Penumbra automatically to the semi-finals.
Gerphil Flores to get record deal from Foster?
Classical singer Flores from Parañaque City, Philippines was the first finalist to be eliminated from the Top Three. However, one of the judges, David Foster, went up the stage to hug a teary-eyed Flores and said "something personal" to the singer.
During the May 7 finals, Foster, who pressed the golden buzzer that sent Flores to the semis, told the Filipina, "No matter what happens tonight, I promise you, the world will know about you," triggering speculations he has a plan to catapult the career of Flores.
This speculation was further fueled with one of the hosts, Rovilson Fernandez, 'slipped' when he assured Flores that everything will be fine for her as he was "promised that the world will certainly know of her," after Foster's personal message to her. Fernandez and co-host Marc Nelson were in a hearing distance with Foster and Flores and heard what the music producer told the Filipina.
Spoilers: Results posted on the Internet before the show
There were some spoilers too. Hours before the show was aired, Instagram user "starmometer" posted a picture at around 6:20 p.m., that shows El Gamma Penumbra and Khusugtun on stage as the Top Two contenders.
The picture was captioned, "El Gamma Penumbra wins Asia's Got Talent," reported PDI.
As Asia's Got Talent was airing on AXN, several news web sites have already posted reports confirming that El Gamma Penumbra has indeed won the tilt.
The other finalists were: Gao Lin and Liu Xin, dance partners from China; Dance Thrilogy, a young group of tap dancers; Triqstar, a fusion dance group from Japan; and The Talento, a tween rock band from Thailand.
Nelson and Fernandez assured fans that Asia's Got Talent, the world's first ever pan-regional edition of the global hit "Got Talent," and billed as the biggest talent competition in the world, will return next year for Season 2.