With ‘Aking Hiling’, Zephanie is now among the few Filipino artists selected to lend their voices to official Disney songs! Talk about career goals.
While the history between Disney and Filipino talent is a tale as old as time, we bet you didn’t know some of your favorite Disney tracks have an official recording sung by Filipino artists. From honorary Disney princess Lea Salonga to history-maker KZ Tandingan, Filipino talent in film and music have been highlighted by Disney over the years. As greater demand and appreciation grows for representation in the international entertainment industry, more and more is diversity being seen and heard all over the world. We cheer on our fellow Filipinos when they work on Hollywood projects because it signifies a growing recognition of our talents and identity in relation to film or music.
With Zephanie being the latest on the lineup of Filipino artists chosen by Disney to perform a song for their productions, let’s take a look back at the other artists who have sung their own renditions of Disney tracks and showcased Filipino talent to the rest of the world.
Twenty-year old artist Zephanie revealed that she was given the opportunity to sing Aking Hiling, the Filipino version of This Wish, the main anthem from the upcoming Disney musical-fantasy film Wish (2023). Previously, she performed When You Wish Upon A Star at the launch of Disney+ in the Philippines as well as an enchanting duet with Janella Salvador and Stell Arejo of Into The Unknown.
In 2021, KZ Tandingan made history as the first Filipino artist to sing a Filipino-language Disney song as she brought to life Gabay for Raya and The Last Dragon. Raya is a film inspired by Southeast Asian culture, so it was fitting for such a powerful local voice to sing such an inspiring song.
DARREN ESPANTO AND MORISSETTE AMON
Musicians Darren Espanto (then only 17 years old!) and Morissette Amon did their own version of the Disney classic A Whole New World for the live-action remake Aladdin (2019). Featuring their lovely vocals, the duet was pure magic, and definitely took us to a new, wondrous and dazzling place.
We can’t get enough of Morissette’s vocals, and clearly, Disney can’t either. The singer was again chosen by Disney to perform the epic Imagine More for the launch of Disney+ in the Philippines, also starring in its promotional video!
Before she was the cunning supervillainess Valentina in Darna (2022), Janella Salvador lent her sweet vocals to the Philippine version of How Far I’ll Go from Moana (2016).
If you were often parked in front of a TV watching Disney growing up, you would recognize this song and music video. The Glow was produced in 2011 for the Disney Princess franchise, and in 2014, music icon Sarah Geronimo recorded and performed the Philippine version of the track for Disney Asia, this time with the addition of princesses Merida from Brave (2012) and Anna and Elsa from Frozen (2013) in the video.
Following Sarah Geronimo, another Filipina artist got the chance to record the Philippine version of a Disney Princess anthem! Maris Racal recorded Simulan, the Filipino version of Brandy’s Starting Now, an empowering track referencing the strength, kindness, and bravery of our favorite princesses.
The charming Iñigo Pascual recorded and performed his own rendition of Remember Me from Disney Pixar’s Coco (2017) in a colorful, heartwarming music video to promote the film.
Did you know singer and actress Nikki Gil recorded her own version of Gotta Go My Own Way from High School Musical 2? You learn something new everyday. Gil was also tapped to perform an Asian version of It’s A Small World with other Asian artists for Hong Kong Disneyland, singing her lines in Filipino.
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