MANILA - Kokoi Baldo and Nino Alejandro, two of the early frontunners of "The Voice of the Philippines," expressed their gratitude to their respective supporters after their elimination from the ABS-CBN singing competition on Sunday.
Baldo, a reggae musician from Boracay, was seen as a fan favorite as he consistently topped public votes until last Sunday's episode, when fellow Team Sarah artist Jason Dy became the first to be saved from elimination.
An emotional Sarah Geronimo picked pop vocalist Monique Lualhati over Baldo, who earlier in the show said he did not join to "compete," but merely to share his music and inspire unity.
On Facebook, Baldo said in his native language: "Salamat sa 360 na journey sa buhay ko. Salamat sa nakinig at nakisama. Saludo at respeto mula sa aking puso at pagkatao."
Rock artist Alejandro, a nephew of '70s pop star Hajji Alejandro and cousin to singer Rachel, was similarly thankful in his message to his followers posted on his Facebook page.
He said, unedited: "Sorry it might have taken me a little long to post this. I honestly needed a little time to gather myself. There are so many things I want to say and I can’t seem to find the words to say them, so let me just start with the most important words of all – THANK YOU. Sobrang salamat sa lahat – to my family for your tireless efforts, to my friends, the wonderful supporters, to the NinoRockerz, Ninoholics, and Team Lea United, and to everyone who has cheered me on during this incredible adventure and shared words of encouragement. I would not have made it here without all of you."
"Thank you to the amazing team and awesome band of The Voice of the Philippines for being so wonderful to work with. I am in awe of all of you and how you put together this amazing show week in and week out. Thank you for the encouragement and all the laughs and fun along the way. Thank you for letting me perform on your incredible stage."
Alejandro dedicated his last competitive performance to his wife, who was seen in tears in the audience. His coach, Broadway star Lea Salonga, was similarly moved by his number but decided to bring belter Leah Patricio to the next round.
To Salonga, Alejandro said: "What an adventure it has been with you. Coach Lea Salonga, there are really no words that can fully express my gratitude, appreciation, and love for you and everything you've done for me. Thank you for believing in me, for giving me this chance for my voice to be heard, and for making me believe that even after all this time, I still have something left to give. I will be ?#TeamLea? ?#FamiLea? for life."
Addressing his supporters, Alejandro expressed confidence that his stint on "The Voice of the Philippines" won't be the last they'll see of him.
"My time on 'The Voice' may have ended here, but my journey is just beginning. When God closes a door he truly opens a window, and masakit man mawala ito, I know that there are other plans for me and I look forward to them with an open heart. I'm ready.
"Thank you so much again to everyone for your support. Mahal ko kayong lahat. Thank you God for this adventure. Rakenrol for life!"