Noven Belleza, a rice farmer from Negros Occidental, was named the grand champion of “Tawag ng Tanghalan” on Saturday.
The “It’s Showtime” talent search saw Belleza beat runners-up Sam Mangubat of Batangas, Froilan Canlas of Camarines Sur, and grand finalists Pauline Agupitan of Batangas, Carlmalone Montecido of Bacolod and Marielle Montellano of Cebu.
Other grand finalists of the contest were Maricel Callo, Mary Gidget dela Llana, Rachel Gabreza and Eumee Capile, but were eliminated on Friday.
Belleza bagged the grand prize package that included P2 million in cash, a house and lot, a music instrument package, a business package, and a one-year talent management contract with ABS-CBN.
Belleza sang a medley of “The One that You Love,” “Now and Forever,” and “I Can’t Live” by Air Supply during the final round of the competition.
He received 99.96 percent of the votes while Mangubat came in second, with 49.09 percent. Canlas placed third with 45.78 percent. The 2017 grand champion was chosen based on the average of the jurors’ scores and the result of the audience text votes.
#TNTAngHulingTapatan trended nationwide in Twitter throughout the show.
Among the jurors were Rey Valera, Louie Ocampo, Ogie Alcasid, Rico J. Puno, Jaya, Nyoy Volante, Mitoy Yonting, Yeng Constantino, Erik Santos, Karla Estrada, K Brosas and It’s Showtime hosts Karylle and Billy Crawford.
In a press conference earlier this week, the noontime show’s hosts shared their thoughts on the segment and revealed that they have their personal “favorites,” comedian Vice Ganda also said that his cohosts don’t always agree with the “Tawag ng Tanghalan” jurors, “but we respect their choices.”
READ: ‘Tawag ng Tanghalan’ grand champion chosen today
“Tawag ng Tanghalan” was first aired on ABS-CBN from 1953 to 1972. It went on air again from 1987 to 1988. Among the biggest winners of the contest were Nora Aunor, Bobot Mortiz and the late Pepe Pimentel. IDL