BALIKBAYAN - NOV. 20, 2009
For “Balik Bayan” host Drew Arellano, every trip to his celebrity guest’s hometown is a new discovery for him, his audience and even his guests.
“Every weekend is an experience. It’s food for the mind eh. Ang daming natututunan,” said Drew who spends his weekends taping for “Balik Bayan.”
With the countless personalities Drew ushered back to their hometowns, he surely had the most out of his weekends in the past years. Asked who made his list of memorable episodes, Drew named three rock music icons – “Freddie Aguilar, because we never knew we’re featuring Sta. Mesa and that it would be so colorful with his stories. Pati ako napa – ‘wow, ganun pala yun.’ And Pepe Smith, because he is Pepe Smith. He is the show. Rock ‘n roll men! Rock ‘n roll! Of course The Dawn. That was awesome. Nakakabighani silang mga true artists. Idol ko talaga ‘tong mga ‘to!”
Being the comical host that he is, the funny stories, of course, did not escape Drew’s favorites – “I remember Ms. Jaclyn Jose, pumunta kami sa bahay nya. ‘Eto naalala ko Drew…,’ ang dami nyang kinuwento! Biglang lumabas ‘yung boy dun, ‘Ms. Jaclyn pasensya na po kasi naririnig ko po kayo. Hindi ‘nyo po talaga bahay ‘to. Nandun po yata bahay ‘nyo.’ She’s a very, very funny girl! And oh man, I love Jojo Alejar. Sobrang hyper and funny. Sobrang pantay yung energy namin which was so cool!”
So what does he find most interesting in “Balik Bayan?”
“Our guests and celebrity tour guides, as we call them, get to go back to their hometowns, share their stories, and there’s no script whatsoever. Ramdam mo na punung-puno sila ng istorya na gusto nilang ilabas. You watch a personality – a news anchor reading the news, an actor acting, and an artist singing – pero dito mo sila nakikita in a different light. May corny side din pala ‘tong si ganito, or yung newscaster may musical inclination din pala. Dito lumalabas yung mga different personalities nila,” he replied.
As to his future guests, he went beyond showbiz for his answer politicians!
“I want to feature former presidents,” smiled the host. “It would be interesting to know kung ano ng nangyayari sa kanila. They can be themselves na, hopefully.”
Regarding which towns he would recommend for the viewers to visit, Drew opined, “I told the viewers before ang daming pwedeng puntahan dito sa Pilipinas. They don’t have to go far away because there are just too many beautiful places here.”