FUNFARE By Ricardo F. Lo Updated June 01, 2009 12:00 AM
"My name is Nicole."
She says that loud and clear in the Clear commercial.
Yes, her name is Nicole - Nicole Scherzinger, one of the five Pussycat Dolls who also include Jessica Sutta (one time captain of the Miami Heat dance troupe), Melody Thornton (a powerhouse singer), and Ashley Roberts and Kimberly Wyatt, two of the most talented young dancers in Hollywood.
They are hot and they're coming to Manila on June 11 for a show at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Concert Grounds.
Funfare did an exclusive phone interview with Nicole who is, as everybody knows by now, half-Filipino (her middle name is Valiente). As she was during another exclusive one-on-one with her last year in Kuala Lumpur, Nicole was sweet, cooing on the phone like a talking doll.
Your billboards for Clear are all over the country.
"Really? Wow, I love it! I'm excited; I couldn't wait to see them when I go there."
The Clear commercial is also airing on TV.
"That's wonderful! We shot it in the States."
Do you still have relatives in the Philippines?
"I may still have but I'm not too sure where they are. Most of them live in Hawaii where I was born and raised and had my early education."
How much of you is Filipino?
"I am half-Filipino, part-Russian and part-Hawaiian."
Do you eat Filipino food?
"My mom eats Filipino food. She loves it! I'm not sure if I have too much Filipino food."
In our last interview, you mentioned Lea Salonga as your idol, remember?
"Aha, yes. When I was 17, I saw Lea Salonga in Miss Saigon and she inspired me to audition for the musical, once. I had a lot of callbacks but I missed them all. But everything in life happens for a reason, so..."
When was the last time you visited the Philippines?
"A few years ago when we did an album promo."
What do you remember from that visit?
"I remember getting off the plane and being greeted by many people. Everybody was smiling at me and knew my name. I was blown away by the warm reception. The short time that I was there was very emotional. It was something that I waited for all my life - going to the Philippines. I couldn't forget our show. I think that was the best crowd reaction we ever had. Unbelievable! I was just very proud to be there."
What have you told your fellow Pussycat Dolls about the Philippines?
"That the Filipinos are so warm."
Come to think of it, Nicole, how do you maintain your figure?
"How do I maintain my figure? It's very hard! It's not easy. If you see the show, you will understand how I maintain my figure."
What diet do you follow; what workout do you do?
"I don't believe in diet. I don't deprive myself of anything. I just eat anything in moderation - you know, small meals. Workout? I do weights and for the most part, I jog to keep my stamina up. Actually, singing and dancing onstage is a good exercise."
What is the Pussycat Dolls' most memorable performance so far?
"Oh, the one in the Philippines! When we got off-stage, the audience asked for an encore and it was the loudest demand for an encore that we ever had. I think the whole building was shaking! We actually had no more encores, so what we did was go back onstage and acknowledge the cheers. It was memorable!"
Is there any rivalry, maybe friendly, among the Pussycat Dolls?
"No. None at all. I don't think so. We are like sisters. We understand each other; we support each other."
How do you relax?
"I don't have too much free time these past couple of years. I love simple things like a nice dinner, hanging out with my family or friends at home. I love to play board games."
Do you have time for your love life?
"I do have a love life!"
How do you see the Pussycat Dolls five or 10 years from now?
"Wow, I don't have any idea! Maybe in 10 years, if we are lucky we will do a reunion concert like what the Spice Girls did."
Why is your latest album called Doll Domination (released in the Philippines by MCA Music, Inc.)?
"It's a fun title, isn't it? You know, we've been working so hard, we've been to different countries and it seems that everyone is a Pussycat Doll. So we came up with the title Doll Domination for fun and it stuck! We are coming back stronger than ever, even stronger than our last album."
Who's the deadliest among the five Dolls?
"Not one. All of us are. Hahahaha!"
See you on your concert in Manila on June 11.
"See you, too. We will bring the house down. We will rock Manila!"