Thursday, August 11, 2011

Project Runway Philippines Season 3: Return of Philippine Fashion in TV

Have you watched Project Runway Philippines before? Personally I didn't watch it before but I read some reviews and articles about this show and they all say that this is very overwhelming since it always showcases Philippine Fashion. After a two-year hiatus, Project Runway Philippines will make a comeback to Philippine television for its third season and serve up another round of trend setting ideas, catty contestants and lots of sewing room drama—just how we like it.

Project Runway is just one of the many TV shows that have local franchises but it’s one of the few that viewers can sit through without cringing. The producers have done a good job in staying faithful to the original concept while injecting a reasonable dose of the Philippine’s own brand of soap opera-like character development, exposition, conflict, climax and resolution.

In an effort to make the show more mass-oriented, the powers that be decided to enlist Tweetie de Leon-Gonzales to replace Teresa Herrera as host. They aim for season 3 to be “very relatable to all. To achieve that, we have to bring in a host who not only understands the dynamics of fashion, but one who is an icon of our pop culture or a familiar face on TV, at the very least,” according to a statement.

Rajo Laurel and Apples Aberin will return to their seats on the judging panel while Jojie Lloren resumes his role as mentor to the contestants. Weekly guest judges will be important names in the fashion scene who have reached international acclaim. Challenges are to focus on the Filipino identity and will incorporate elements of local materials and culture to explore the potential of everything Pinoy. Something to look forward to are the twists as the show starts with 14 contestants but only 12 challenges are planned.

Viewers can also expect a higher level of production as Season 3 will be directed by award-winning French director and producer Henri de Lorme, a fixture in the advertising circuit. The show also introduces the Asian Institute of Fashion, the contestants’ new design home. The school boasts a faculty including Jojie, Inno Sotto and Lulu Tan Gan—some of the country’s top designers. And the models to bring life to the contestants’ designs on the runway will be members of the prestigious Professional Models Association of the Philippines, no less. This definitely ups the ante a few notches of fierceness.

Project Runway Philippines has helped jumpstart the careers of budding designers. Season 1 winner Aries Lagat, an instructor at the Philippine Institute of Fashion, is an editorial staple. Meanwhile, Veejay Floresca is a favorite designer to the stars and Philip Tampus has a thriving atelier in Cebu. Season 2 winner Manny Marquez is now a mentor himself at the AIF and his runner-up, Russell Villafuerte, is enjoying the fruits of his exposure on the show, saying that “what matters is what you do after the competition.”

Big prizes await the winner of the new season. He or she will receive a short fashion course at a top European fashion school, a two-month apprenticeship with the forces behind the AIF, 10 sewing machines and a full scholarship for a four-year fashion course at the AIF’s iACADEMY program. Of course, there’s the P500,000 cash prize and the coveted 10-page spread in Mega magazine.

Auditions will be held on August 20 and 21 at the Pryce Plaza Hotel in Cagayan de Oro, August 27 and 28 at the Marco Polo Hotel in Cebu, September 3 and 4 at the Hotel Supreme in Baguio and September 6 and 7 at the Jungle Gym in Makati. The show premieres on ETC in February next year. Go to for the complete audition mechanics.
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