- Erik Santos’ ‘My Greatest Moment’ concert marked his 15th anniversary in the music industry, recently held at MOA Arena last September 21, 2018.
- In his concert, Erik recounted his life journey before reaching his career’s success – a concert showcasing his personal story starting from his childhood up to his ‘Star in a Million’ days.
- Special guests varied from young artists to veterans alike, including Moira, Angeline, Kyla, Yeng, Jason Dy, Jay-R, and Daryl Ong, up to veterans like Regine Velasquez-Alcasid, Martin Nievera, Ogie, Jaya, and Vina.
- The concert was directed by Erik’s dear friend, artist and dancer, John Prats.
Prince of Pop Erik Santos has proved once again that he will – and should – always be deemed as a champ, both in his personal life and his singing career. Being a huge fan since grade school, I was grateful to be given a chance to finally see him perform in the flesh – all sparkly and awe-inspiring – looking sharp in his customized suits.
Erik is, above all, the inspiration of today’s many young balladeers (including myself who occasionally sings). Gifted with a big, powerful voice, Erik has indeed easily become one of OPM’s greatest icons in the recent years. For this, I would like to believe that his “My Greatest Moment” concert was just one of the many more concerts he would plan to share with his fans in the next fruitful years of his career.
A Unique, Narrative-driven Concert
Given that the concert started rather late (beginning at around 9:15 pm when it was supposed to start by 8pm), my friends and I were already feeling a bit heavy-eyed. Really, half of the audience just started coming by 9 pm, which was a bit chafing, considering that we came on the dot. Just as we were about to feel even more languid, the opening number came like a bolt from the blue – really eye-opening.
The concert started with a powerful belting of “One Moment in Time” by TNT Kids grand winner Jhon Clyd Talili, who posed as the young Erik, followed by Erik himself who emerged with the ‘almighty’ chorus of “This is the Moment,” sending goose bumps to all of us, who were equally screaming our lungs out. Dressed in a white Michael Jackson-inspired suit, Erik right away showcased his signature pieces – “I Believe I can Fly” and “Next In Line” – which we didn’t expect (we thought he would reserve those for the finale). Remarkably, each song carried a story of its own; each spiel highlighting accounts from his humble beginnings up to his surging success.
A Star in a Million
At merely four years old, Erik could already ‘hum’ fine tunes. He recalled singing atop their dining table, dreaming of one day performing on a large stage. Never actually winning first place on local singing competitions back in the day, Erik had been disheartened rather too many times, with people persistently telling him that he couldn’t sing. Now, at age 35, he made proof that he couldn’t only sing, but inspire people with his story. Erik was a laser-focused young man, and he knew exactly what he wanted in life: to sing for his people.
All the same, despite his countless accomplishments, Erik never actually forgot the few people he was with throughout his upbringing years as a singer. That was why, during his 15th anniversary, he made it a point to perform with his ‘Star in a Million’ friends and batch mates – including Asia’s Romantic Balladeer, Christian Bautista. Christian told Erik how amazing it was that Erik remained a friend to all, which might be the very reason why the Prince of Pop stayed that long in the music industry: he knows exactly how to make friends.
After that, Erik, a balladeer, surprisingly performed with the country’s RnB male icons – Jay-R, Jason Dy, and Daryl Ong. He showcased his versatility in singing, flaunting those smooth riffs and runs. He then had a duet with young female artists – Moira, Kyla, Yeng, and Angeline (who Erik was being linked with before). With their numbers, Erik showcased how his voice could simply blend with varying female voice qualities, knowing that all the girls came from different music genres. With this, each song conveyed different feelings and different intentions – which made each performance unparalleled and unforgettable. On the whole, the experience basically felt as though watching an ‘ASAP’ episode live – it was just legitimately ‘wowing.’
One of my best-loved performances, evidently, was the ever in-demand “This is the Moment,” which he sang fully at the middle of the concert, all for the intention of the ‘inevitable.’ (Kudos to John Prats for making a well-thought-of lineup!) Before singing his signature piece “This is the Moment,” Erik recounted his “Star In a Million” winning moment – giving thanks to all the people who helped him throughout his career. Surprisingly, as he gave a ‘yet again’ powerful performance of the song, a video of him during the competition appeared on the LED screen. Throughout the chorus, Erik made a duet with his 20-year-old self – a very monumental instance, as it aligned to the overall theme of the concert, which was a run-through of his life.
An Icon to Behold
One of the reasons why my friends and I seemed all ‘delirious’ to see the concert (apart from of course, seeing Erik Santos perform), was to hear the Regine Velasquez. But before that mind-blowing part, it was really a great honor to hear other veterans like Ogie Alcasid, Jaya, and Vina Morales – who were all great friends of Erik. Notably, “Mr. Pure Energy” Gary Valenciano, who was merely watching the concert and was taking a break from performing, managed to have a duet with Erik. Also, it was so wonderful to see Martin Nievera (whose name wasn’t on the poster) singing on stage; and the suspended astonishment on Erik’s face was beyond price. I was so happy to see that Erik got to perform once again with the person he looked up to, especially on such a defining day of his life.
Then came “Asia’s Songbird” Regine Velasquez and MOA just turned gaga ‘real quick.’ Together, Erik and Regine sang “Pagbigyang Muli.”
Although it was not the smoothest performance during the show, still, it depicted a really iconic picture: two world-class singers sharing the stage together. It was splendid.
All in all, Erik Santos’ “My Greatest Moment” was an inspiring night. It was, truly, very personal for me; it was not just an exhibition of vocal capacities, rather a display of the many life lessons Erik Santos has learned right through his 15-year success.