MANILA - Music veteran Ogie Alcasid asked multiple times to be given time to collect himself as he turned emotional Wednesday over his daughter Leila's milestone in show business.
Leila, 20, was in the middle of a press conference after signing up with ABS-CBN's record label Star Music, when Ogie, who is also her manager, was called in to sit beside his daughter with beauty queen Michelle van Eimeren.
Asked how he feels about Leila's blossoming career, Ogie said: "I remember I started when I was your age. Parang full circle, that's how it feels."
The "Tawag ng Tanghalan" judge appeared to have further words, but couldn't continue as he tried contain his tears. He excused himself to "collect my thoughts," before saying, "I didn't realize I was going to be very emotional."
"It's her time," Ogie said. "Na nakikita ko 'yon, it makes me so happy, so joyful, so blessed, so thankful. I'm really grateful to ABS-CBN that they gave her this chance, because she is very talented. She's very smart, she's very kind, she's very humble."
The hitmaker, both as a father and manager to Leila, has given no shortage of advice to the showbiz newcomer.
"Mahirap 'to. It's not an easy job. There are a lot of sacrifices that come with it. Maraming mga bashers, lalo na ngayon, because of social media. But if this is what you feel like doing, I'm 100% supportive of her," Ogie said.
Leila, whose first single will be released in February, was candid in admitting she has long wanted to share her talent. She described her music, which will be produced by Marion Aunor, as "very pop, but relaxed, light, and bubbly."
Asked about the possibility of including a song composed by her father in her album, Leila shared that they have, in fact, "written a few songs together before." She did not discount the chance of eventually releasing them for an audience to hear.
"I'd love for my dad to write me one, like a ballad," Leila added. "I would really be honored to be able to sing something of my dad's. Definitely, a dream of mine."
Leila would be similarly feel "honored" if she gets to perform a duet with her step-mother, Regine Velasquez, who is dubbed "Asia's Songbird."
"Oh my goodness! I don't know if I'm worthy!" she said, when asked on the possibility. "But if the chance ever comes, and I practice a little more, then yeah, definitely."
Admittedly nervous over the pending release of her first single, Leila found assurance in the reaction of her father when he first listened to it.
"I think he cried. He's very proud of me," she said. "It was a very nice feeling for me to see how he reacted to it, because it meant I did an okay job. . . I'm just happy, so happy, that I have him, his expertise, his knowledge, his experience."