A quintet of comely chanteuses namely Olive Bihag, Laiza Comia, Dainiel Leones, Elle Pascual, Denise Pello, and Anne Tenorio comprise Calista, the latest addition to the ever-growing P-Pop community.
People are curious about this all-female group, topping the enumeration, of course, is their name, which is of Greek origin that supposedly means most beautiful.
The nearest person that comes to mind carrying the name is Calista Flockheart of Ally Mc Beal fame, now the significant squeeze of Harrison Ford. Also, I cannot help but wonder how the mighty Aphrodite, Grecian goddess of love and beauty reacts to the moniker. She might be frowning, fuming with a raised eyebrow, if the goddess was for real.
The ladies that compose Calista are all so relatively young, with digits ranging from 16 to 21. They are harnessing the power of electric youth, as Debbie Gibson used to sing it. Their interesting backstories of having joined beauty and talent contests are proof that they are extremely competitive, confident of their physical endowments, and at an early age, they know that being beautiful is their greatest advantage.
Being in showbiz, as part of Calista, is their means to fully express and realize their artistry and showcase their world-class talents.
The sleek music video that was “Race Car,” produced by Marcus Davies who also wrote the song scream and sound American Top 40 variety was presented during the media conference.
As Calista performed the song during the press shindig, remembering how they sang and danced on the stage, the cons of the quintet becomes more apparent.
They still lack the attitude, precision, snap, and synchronicity when they dance. For the singing part, the lyrics were inaudible, the voices, raw and shaky, they have not achieved that “one unison sound” that is a must in a group performance.
The singing and dancing at the same time, take a toll on them, one can sense the catching of their breathing and they were not giving it the so-called “performance level” the song deserved. These, as they say, can be remedied with the old saying of “practice makes perfect.”
The biggest con of Calista, which is not their fault, is the anthem assigned to them. There is nothing Filipino about it. When you listen and hear the song, immediately the conclusion you get, here is another all-American pop girl group wanting our attention. We have heard this before, next please!
The people behind their maiden track, seem to have forgotten how the likes of Korean singing megastars captured the fascination of the world. Prime points are PSY of “Oppa Gangnam Style,” BTS’s pre-Butter era, Super Junior, and the other Korean androgynous-looking boy bands and power feminine groups.
All of them sing in Korean, with a few songs peppered with English lines and what one hears and experiences, the distinctive color, texture, and sound of being Korean that pulsates in their ditties.
Another case to prove my observation, Ricky Martin, whose biggest hits were “ La Copa de La Visa,” “Livin La Vida Loca,” and “She Bangs,” that Latin fire, sexiness, and passion, not only oozes but are perceptible in all the mentioned hits.
With “Race Car,” where is the Filipino in Calista? If they continue with this song choice path, please give me BINI and MNL 48 anytime, and yes, they may kiss their international career as to who would want to invest in copycats?
On April 26, Calista holds court at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in a concert billed as Vax to Normal. Hope springs eternal that by concert night, being proud maidens of the Philippines will be seen and heard.