After a night of jaw-dropping stellar performances, General Santos’ Shane Gulle was crowned as the grand champion of Sing for the Stars, the first-ever livestream singing competition from online community platform Kumu, on April 9, 2022. The finale show, hosted by KC Montero and Shanaia Gomez, saw Gulle edge out Quezon City’s Archie Aguilar and Davao del Sur’s Christian Bahaya in a two-round singing showdown judged by international singer and jazz icon, Michael Bublé, who watched and critiqued the finalists live from Germany.
Gulle takes home the 10,000-US dollar cash prize, as well as a one-year music contract with Warner Music Philippines, a spotlight on Kumu’s Tiny Gig program where she will headline her own live online concert, and a one-on-one vocal coaching session with Bublé.
The calm before the storm
The finale’s first round had each of the three finalists perform a song of their own choice, where Archie Aguilar performed a rock rendition of Jessie J’s 2011 hit single, Who You Are. Bublé praised him for picking “a really ambitious song with a ton of runs”, and commented that although it was noticeable that he was nervous, he did a good job performing his own spin on the song.
Shane Gulle followed Aguilar with her cover of Lead the Way, a Mariah Carey standard from the Glitter movie soundtrack, which made Bublé compare her to French-Canadian singing legend, Celine Dion, for making her listeners feel at peace while watching her perform. The star judge shared, however, that although her vocal runs were nothing short of amazing, they were a little overwhelming at times, but nonetheless commended the singer for her voice, confidence, and joy.
Last but not least, Christian Bahaya closed off the night’s first set by singing Harry Styles’ multi-platinum hit, Falling. The self-professed Bublé stan was praised by the judge, who took note of his vocal control as he sang the two-octave song. The jazz standard icon also told Bahaya that he is also a fan of the contestant, and that he takes pride in him idolizing the Grammy-winning singer.
Shortly after Bublé’s judging, Montero and Gomez announced that Gulle and Bahaya will be advancing to the second and final round of the show, with Aguilar finishing in third place (and taking home 2,000 USD).
The final showdown
For the final round, Gulle and Bahaya performed together a medley of two of the Philippines’ greatest songs of all time, 214 by Rivermaya and With a Smile by Eraserheads.
Bublé commended the two singers after the performance, and shared that they did not make it easy for him to decide which musician would take the win home. In the end, it was announced that Sing for the Star’s first-ever grand champion is Shane Gulle, who Bublé said received just a point higher than Bahaya in the criteria for judging. As the runner-up, Bahaya received 4,000 USD.
Gulle ended the program with an encore performance of Lead the Way, thanking Bublé and her supporters for supporting her throughout the competition.
Sing for the Stars, a joint effort between Kumu Music Team and Warner Music Philippines, is an all-digital international online singing competition that aims to discover untapped talents by making them go head-to-head in a multi-rounded livestream competition. Star judges Lea Salonga and Michael Bublé lead the search for the Philippines’ freshest vocal powerhouses.
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