Singer Ely Buendia reacted to the alleged plagiarism done by talent search “The Pop Stage” winner CJ Villavicencio, who reportedly ripped off the musical “Ang Huling El Bimbo.”
In a Facebook post, Buendia appealed to the people and entities involved in the AHEB musical plagiarism, saying “You alone have the power to make this right.|
“You have the power to teach a young man and all the young people out there about to join the world, our children, a most valuable lesson that can have no other effect except make them good and become better,” he said.
The musical is a play based on the music of 90s bands The Eraserheads, in which Buendia was the vocalist.
The singer added that the corporations involved should stand up for and give back to the art which “has been a source of life for all of us.”
“You have the power to set an example and for once do the right thing, and become a beacon of hope in these dark times ruled by greed, hate and lies,” he added.
“Your actions will set a precedent and have repercussions in the years to come. On which side of history do you want to be on? Search your hearts for the truth and it will set you free,” he ended his note.
Villavicencio’s performance, in which he sang a medley of Eraserheads songs, made him win PHP1 million and a one-year contract with Viva Artists Agency. However, fans of and the production team of the musical claimed there were similarities with his performances and those with the play.
AHEB’s musical director Myke Salomon also expressed his disappointment with Villavicencio.
“A guy copied/ripped-off our musical arrangements for #AngHulingElbimboMusical (musical treatment, concept) without permission won in that pop stage contest for his final round. He won 1million and an artist contract. I feel bad for the other contestants,” he said in his Twitter post.
“And para sa mga productions and judges. You are judging concept and originality.. You tolerate ripping off,” he added.
And para sa mga productions and judges. You are judging concept and originality.. You tolerate ripping off.
— Myke Salomon (@DJMYKEsalomon) August 2, 2020
The talent show winner has since apologized, and said he did not intend to plagiarize. He added that he just wanted to make a tribute to his favorite artists and musical, while incorporating his own story.
“I was hurt but it also aches my heart to unintentionally hurt some people as well, especially the production team of Ang Huling El Bimbo The Musical. There was no intention to plagazire. “I am sorry if I caused undue distress, seemed disrespectful or if I have hurt the theater community,” he said in his now deleted post.