MANILA - Moira dela Torre was able to live out her dreams of officially singing a theme song for Disney -- an opportunity she never thought would happen in this lifetime.
On Tuesday, Disney revealed it had tapped dela Torre to record the local version of “Reflection” for the upcoming live action film “Mulan.”
The track was originally performed by Lea Salonga in the 1998 animated movie “Mulan,” while its studio version was recorded by Christina Aguilera in the same year.
Dela Torre said she felt excited and nervous when she first heard about the project.
“It really felt like a full circle, because ‘Reflection’ is the first song I ever had to learn in full, because I had to sing it for a special number for our church's second anniversary. It was basically what opened the door for me to start loving music,” she said.
“It’s very cool because this happened. It’s crazy. I wouldn’t have believed that I would get to work with Disney for something as big as this. If you asked me this last year, I still wouldn’t believe it. It’s such a great opportunity, and I’m very grateful for it,” she added.
When asked how she feels every time people compare her version to those of Salonga or Aguilera, she said: “Actually, at first, to be honest, I was terrified, but if there’s one thing that I learned from Mulan, Lea Salonga, and Christina Aguilera, it’s really being true to myself. They made it to that stage because they were true to themselves and I feel very empowered by that.”
Contrary to her expectations, dela Torre said she is just happy that Disney allowed her to put a personal touch in her own version.
“I was actually expecting it to have a lot of rules, but when I got into the studio, they just said, ‘We just want Moira,’” she recalled.
Dela Torre added thar “Reflection” is also dear to her because the lyrics resonate with her.
“‘Why must we all conceal, how we think, how we feel.’ We’re so careful now! This millennial generation makes us walk on eggshells. It’s so hard to be true to yourself, and that’s really something that we should fight for,” she said.
“I know what my advocacy is, and that’s on mental health, on hope, on perseverance, on love, on kindness, and family. Even talking about those things that are super essential to everyone is such a hard thing. That’s why I really love this song, no joke. I wish I wrote it,” she added.
Aside from recording its local version, dela Torre also shot a music video.
Sharing her experience filming it, she said: “I didn’t expect it to be that big. I was flattered and at the same time was also so terrified, but when I stood on stage it didn’t sink in until the first scene.”
Explaining why it was memorable for her, dela Torre said the auditorium where she shot it almost looked like the exact same hall where she filmed her very first music video when she was still a budding singer.
“It’s crazy because when I got out of the stage, it was in an auditorium with red chairs. If you look at my very first music video, it was ‘After Your Heart,’ we shot it in an auditorium in Antipolo. It was just my tito who shot it. I remember being in that stage and looking out on the empty audience, and I’m just like, ‘Wow, I wonder where You’re gonna take me, God.’ When I stepped on that stage for 'Mulan,' it was just, ‘Wow, God, I can’t believe You took me here, but thank You,’” she said.
The live-action “Mulan” movie will open in Philippine cinemas on March 25.