When Johnny Orlando first came to the Philippines last year, he had an unforgettable time. And he’s looking to repeat that magic this November.
Traveling to a country for the first time is always exciting. The anticipation of the new adventures, experiences, and not to mention people as you step into a new country is palpable. You just never know what awaits you. So, when Johnny Orlando touched down in the Philippines last year, he was in for a treat with his first trip to the country. Mall shows filled with his adoring fans, becoming besties with Zack Tabudlo (and getting tattoos together), and getting an up-close view of Filipino culture awaited the young musician.
Needless to say, he had a great first impression of the country. And this 2023, Johnny makes his return as he brings his The Ride Tour to Manila on November 20 at The Filinvest Tent. As his first full show in the country, it’s a moment Johnny’s Filipino fans have been waiting for, not to mention the artist himself. “I’m expecting even more fun this time with the whole tour,” he enthusiastically shares. Ahead of his show later this year, we got the chance to catch up with Johnny as he shared his Manila memories, being friends with Zack Tabudlo, and more.
How does it feel to be traveling back to the Philippines again?
I had an absolutely amazing time [in the Philippines] last year. So I’m very excited. I was watching the videos from the last time we were in Manila, and I need to do that again. So I’m happy that we’re going back.
Are there any memories from your last visit to the country that stick out to you?
I remember all of it. I got a matching tattoo with Zack [Tabudlo]. And we did a mall show together, which was really cool. I rarely get to do those. We went out for dinner, and we went bowling with Universal Music Philippines and a bunch of artists and influencers. I got to try some traditional food, and I just had a great time and experience. It was just so cool to be able to actually talk to my Filipino fans and meet people. I met people who run like big fan pages that have been grinding for years. I’m expecting even more fun this time with the whole tour.
When you were in the Philippines, you met and quickly became friends with Zack Tabudlo. How did you meet him, and how did your friendship start?
It was a business thing at first, which is actually how I’ve made a lot of my friends it seems. We were gonna film a couple of videos and do this joint show together. And then I met Zack, and we got to talk. And I was like, ‘Wow, this dude is cool.’ We were talking about life, music, relationships, growing up, and being in the public eye. He’s a great kid, so grounded, so levelheaded. Great artist as well, of course.
So is it safe to say then that when you come back to the Philippines this November for the concert, we’ll see you and Zack share the stage?
Well, of course, I would love that, if schedules permit. But Zack is a very busy boy. And he’s flying all over the place all the time. So we’ll see.
You’re return to the Philippines later this year is just part of a wider tour taking you all over the world. With that being said, how do you manage that balance between performing on stage in different cities then just being in your hotel room?
I guess show day for sure it takes a lot out of you. But you also kind of just rise to the occasion of whatever you’re doing. Like, four shows in a row seemed inconceivable at one point in my career, but, you know that’s what you have to do. You can really do anything as long as you go to sleep. And just get up and back. Get eight hours and you’re fine.
In between shows, what do you like to do in your free time?
That depends if I have a show the next day. If yes, I stay in bed. If not, I love to explore a city and go out with my bandmates to see what the area has to offer. I love talking to people, specifically those who have no idea who I am, I’m just down to chat. Like, I love talking to Uber drivers. I don’t even know how many times I’ve gotten an Uber and then we’ve just chatted in the car or they come to a bar with me or something. I love talking to people who have a completely different life experience than me.
As an artist, where do you think is the best place to stay at a concert?
That’s very much a preference. The size of venues that I play, you can kind of go anywhere and you’ll still have a good show. I personally like being in the thick of things. I love dancing. I love other people dancing around. I love feeding off of other people’s energy.
What message do you have for your Filipino fans?
To my Filipino fans, I am coming. I will be there soon with new music and a ton of energy, and I’m very excited. And the show is on November 20. I want to see all of you guys there.
Johnny Orlando’s The Ride Tour in Manila is presented by Live Nation Philippines. Get your tickets now to his show at The Filinvest Tent on November 20 here.
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