LOS ANGELES --- Internationally-renowned singer and actress Charice (Charmaine Clarice Relucio Pempengco) spoke with GMA News about her thoughts about her family, friends, Filipino fans, and her career, especially her stint in the hit TV series "Glee."
Below are excerpts of our phone interview with Charice:
How do you feel about your fans missing your presence in “Glee"? Is there a reason why you have been off from the show for a while?
I don’t think there is a reason why I have been off. Well, now I am back though. My fans are very happy. I see that on my Twitter. I read their Tweets and they are very excited that I am back. (Creator-director) Ryan Murphy really made my fans wait but in a good way. Now they are very excited.
Who did you get along well with the “Glee" cast? Did you have any crushes on any of the guys?
No, I did not have any crushes. But before I got into “Glee," my favorite character was Kevin McHale who portrays Artie Abrams. He is very nice.
Charice Pempengco Photo by Sthanlee B. Mirador How many episodes of “Glee" are you doing?
I don’t know how many. But I am really excited to be back.
What do you enjoy most being in the cast of “Glee"?
I enjoy getting to know all of them. I am a Gleek. When I found out I was going to join them, I was excited to be part of the group. They really make me feel comfortable on the set. They are playful. It’s just amazing to watch them and to get to know them. I love bonding with them.
How does it feel to do “All By Myself" by Celine Dion in the latest episode?
It feels great. I am very excited to sing it. I am blessed to be part of the show. When they gave me that song, I was happy because I have been singing it forever.
How was it meeting Filipino-American, Darren Criss, who started to be known online just like you. Is that now being used as a platform to jumpstart one's career?
Sort of. It is amazing that it happened to both Darren and me. It is a dream come true. I know how it feels.
How much has “Glee" really helped you in your career?
“Glee" is the best thing that has happened to me. It is the best reason why I am being recognized right now. People come up to me and say, “Oh, I saw you in ‘Glee.’" It has really helped me in my career and my life. I would like to thank them for having me on the show.
How was it working with Lea Michele?
She is such a sweet girl. I was scared at first of her. When I came back to the show, she immediately said, “Hi Charice! We missed you so much!" Then she took a picture with me.
Are you expected to do any more diva offs with her?
My character Sunshine is looking forward to another showdown with Lea Michelle. But I don’t know what will happen next to my character.
Does your character — Sunshine Corazon — help the Glee club or does she have any other agenda in “Glee"?
That is funny. I really don’t know. I am just excited to be back as well. I don’t know what is going to happen after this --- if I am going to turn into a spy or help the Glee choir win. It’s a very interesting story. So I can’t wait.
What other songs do you want to sing in “Glee?"
It’s fun that I did a cover of a Beyonce song but if they are going to give me a chance to choose a song, I would want to sing my own song, “Before It Explodes," which came out yesterday. It is a heartbreaking song, a very powerful song that was written by Fil-Am Bruno Mars. I would love to do that.
Are you going to do any duets in “Glee"? If you had a chance to do a duet, who would you want to do it with?
I do not know what they are planning or if Rachel Berry and Sunshine Corazon will have another duet. But if I they are going to ask me, I would love to have a duet with Amber Riley who portrays Mercedes Jones. I think she is an amazing singer. I love the way she sings and I love her rendition of “And I’m Telling You." If they are going to give me a chance, I would love to perform with her.
Are you going to the prom?
I don’t know. I am serious. I’ve been reading about it because my Twitter fans are also talking about it. It’s funny but I really don’t know. I am really excited.
As a self-confessed Gleek, were you nervous when you first met the “Glee" cast?
Yes, I am a self-confessed Gleek. I was very nervous when I first met the cast. I was shaking. I was thinking, “Oh my God, are they really gonna like me?" When I was on the set, they were all nice. They were all sweet. They asked me, “What’s up? What’s next with you?" It’s amazing. Naya Rivera, who portrays Santana Lopez, is my favorite. She is such a sweet girl.
Do you guys usually sing together on set when the cameras are not rolling?
Not really. We just talk about random topics like Twitter or something. Sometimes when somebody pulls out a song and we all like it, we will sing it together.
Who are you closest to on the set?
They are all nice. All of them talk to me. But I must say it is Naya Rivera who is closest to me. She is really nice. On my first day on the set, I was surprised that she knows all about me. She said, “I saw you on Oprah. I know you play the guitar." I was like, “What?!" I was really impressed with her. I know she is very busy but she found time to do her research.
Are you going to participate in the tour?
I have no idea. I do not know what’s going to happen. If they are going to make me part of it that would really be exciting. But right now, I am just really happy I am shooting again in “Glee."
What were your most memorable moments while filming “Glee"?
I think jut being in “Glee" is the best experience. But the best part was when I filmed “All By Myself"…when I sang that song onstage. I have been singing that song forever. So when I was onstage, I was really feeling it.
Did you hear that Rebecca Black’s internet hit, “Friday," might be picked up as a cover in “Glee"?
I think it’s amazing how it works. It’s crazy. They picked up the cover. Honestly, it’s incredible how it works. I’ve been hearing about it everywhere. I would like to congratulate Rebecca for that.
Have fun with this question. Jane Lynch is very tall. How do you feel standing next to her?
Oh my God, I feel like a six-year-old kid standing next to her. But I love Jane. She is really nice and sweet. We get along well. On my first day on the set, she was one of the first ones to talk to me.
You have worked with some famous singers already. Who else do you want to work with?
I have not met Beyonce and Lady Gaga yet so I would love to work with them. I would like to perform and collaborate with them.
You are filming a movie, “Here Comes the Boom." Do you prefer to do movies or TV when it comes to acting?
I love both. I prefer doing movies, though, because you have more time to get to know the people. So far, this movie is an amazing experience. The people in the movie (Salma Hayek, Kevin James, Henry “The Fonz" Winkler and Reggie Lee) are very sweet.
Can you talk about your next movie, “Here Comes The Boom?"
My character is Malia de la Cruz. She is a high school student and Kevin James is my high school biology teacher. His sideline is a martial arts fighter. He wants to save the music department. Of course, my character is a braniac. I am a musical genius here. I play the piano and sing. Sunshine Corazon can relate to her.
Are you going to tour throughout the U.S.?
I am still working on that. I have been working on my new songs right now. Touring is really fun. I recently did Japan and yes, I want to do a tour in the U.S.
What do you want to say to your Filipino fans?
I am really happy that they are supporting me right now. The support is really strong and I can totally feel it. I hope they keep on supporting me. Mahal ko kayong lahat! – GMA News