Darren Espanto: The Living Proof

Darren Espanto meets fans in CDO and ButuanTo cope up with life’s sorrows, I usually spend my leisure time watching Korean Dramas and reading books. When I almost finish watching and reading all of them, I decided to browse the Internet. I noticed that most of my friends in social media keep on sharing a video of a young, handsome, Chinito boy from the TVK blind audition wearing a combination of red and grey jacket. When I watched the video, I was amazed on how a 13 years old kid can sing and dance so well!

It made me more surprised when I learned that he’s from Canada but speaks the Tagalog language fluently. I told myself, this Kid is really something. It was then the start of my journey of being a DARRENatic. I watched all his videos in YouTube and followed his performances in TVK. I even tried to vote for him during the finals. Sadly, he wasn’t declared as winner. My heart was pierced when I saw him cry. With the incredible talent that he has, I knew that he can still reach his dreams. God has prepared a good plan for him.

My life which is full of pains and sorrows became meaningful when I knew Darren. He’s like my daily dose of Vitamin D. I can’t last a day without seeing or listening to any of his songs. I activated my Twitter account and searched for fellow DARRENatics. I was glad that I was able to find them online. I was chosen to be an Admin of Cagayan de Oro and a part of the Trending Group.

Because of my love for Darren, I began to look for opportunities where I can see him perform live. I thought it was really impossible to personally meet him because I’m living in the Northern part of Mindanao. Then suddenly, the Butuan City admin told me that Darren will have a concert there on October 19, 2014. I did not mind her invitation at first, thinking of the distance and of course the money for ticket, fare, accommodation etc. But after his 1st Solo Concert in the Music Museum, I was really jealous to those who came. And it made me more jealous when they share the experiences they have. Immediately, I contacted the organizer of the concert and asked to reserve a VIP ticket for me. Gladly, my mom (who’s also a DARRENatic) agreed that she will pay for the ticket. I was really happy that time and thought that I’m a few steps away to meet Darren.

It was on October 19, 2014 at 12:00 midnight where we (with DARRENatic Iligan admins and co- DARRENatic CdeO) traveled to Butuan by non air-conditioned bus. We traveled for 6 hours and arrived at Butuan early in the morning. We immediately went to the hotel where Darren will be staying and prepared our gifts, banner and even balloons to welcome him. It was past 10:00 am when they arrived in the hotel, I was starstrucked when I saw him. He’s very different from the camera. He’s 10x cuter, his skin is so flawless and his eyes are very beautiful. He was like an angel as he entered the lobby and we were mesmerized as he waved and smiled at us. We took a group picture with Darren and also with Sir Vehnee and Ma’am Ladine. When he left from the hotel for the meet and greet session, all of us shouted for joy. Even some of the DARRENatics in Butuan were crying. They told me that they were just so happy to see Darren and it was like a dream come true for all of us.

Since I had a VIP ticket (Silver Level Sponsor), I was entitled to attend the meet and greet session. Another pictorial, but that time it was a solo picture with Darren. I was able to have a selfie with him and my friends took many pictures of me with Darren. When we had our last group picture, I was able to stand near and I told him “Darren, ang CUTE mo.” And he replied, “Thank you po” (with a cute smile). He’s really a very cute kid.
The concert started at 6:30 pm, we went to the venue an hour earlier and it was already filled with people wearing green shirts. Butuan is just a small city but they were able to fill the venue. It showed that Darren can gather thousands of people. The show started right on time. The concert was divided into two parts, 1st part was the talent presentation from Enfant Cheri, the school who organized Darren’s concert and 2nd part was his concert. The students and faculties really did a great job; they were able to showcase their talents in singing and dancing.

Then, came the second part of the show, a throwback video was flashed on screen. It was Darren’s journey from The Next Star and TVK performances. I was even teary eyed while watching his videos. I can’t imagine how a 13 year old kid managed to stand up after not getting the title twice. He started the concert by singing the song which made me love him, Domino and then followed by What Makes you Beautiful. The 3rd song was the one that he sang during the Sing-Offs round of TVK, Listen and followed by One Moment in Time by Whitney Houston in which he sang during the Semi Finals.. The 5th song was the one he performed during the Finals (upbeat), Somebody to Love. Then, it was followed by another song from the finals Ngayon. He also sang for the first time in live, Dance with My Father., It was requested by someone who just lost her father. I got teary eyed when he sang that song. Every lyric that he delivered pierced my heart. I have always wanted him to sing that song also. Even though he only had a short period of time in rehearsing that song, he still gave justice and I even love his version. After that tear jerking song, he asked the audience who wants to have a duet with him. Afterwards, a very shy girl went on stage. They sang Forever’s Not Enough. It was a beautiful duet. The audience was so thrilled, especially when Darren gave the Shy girl a power hug. After that sweet performance, Darren asked the audience to stand up and dance with him as he sings Where Have You Been. I like the part when he said “behave po kayo ha?”, then he went down from the stage and shook hands with the audience. A small kid was also very lucky that she was able to dance with Darren. He concluded the concert by singing Neon Lights.

My friends and I were so very lucky because we also checked-in the hotel where Darren was staying. After breakfast, we were able to have a chit chat with Mama Luz (Darren’s aunt), also with the TV Crew and even Darren. When it’s off cam, he’s just a normal kid, who loves to play around. I saw how he enjoys playing together with his TVCrew. He’s makulit pero magalang and masunurin na bata. That’s why everyone from all ages and gender loves him. My last conversation with him was, “Goodbye, Darren. Thank you.” Then, he replied, “Thank you din po” and smiled. I chose not to see him while he leaves the hotel because it will be heartbreaking for me. And with that, I will always look forward to the day that I will see him again. I hope that time it will be already here, in Cagayan de Oro City.

I will be forever thankful to the organizer of the concert, Ma’am Flora Aurea, for without her I will not be able to meet Darren. Also, DARRENatics Butuan for the warm welcome. I am also grateful to have DARRENatics Iligan, who traveled 8 hours just to meet Darren and of course my co-DARRENatic CdeO who was with me during the preparation until the day of the concert.

It was the best day of my life, short but memorable. Darren Espanto is a 13 year old kid with a great talent and charisma that captured everyone’s heart. With the fame that he is now experiencing, he still remains humble. He’s a good example to the youth. Darren has really helped me cope with the challenges that I was facing. He’s the living proof that no matter how many times we fall, if we just stand up and try again then, we will achieve our dreams. Darren has also taught me that losing is not the end of everything; it’s the beginning of new things. Indeed, it is true that when God closes a door, he opens the windows and pours out blessings from heaven.
God bless you always Darren, stay healthy and handsome. Keep on inspiring people, especially the youth. Thank you for making our lives more colorful and meaningful.

Zarah Casiño
DARRENatics Cagayan de Oro Area Rep

41 Responses to “Darren Espanto: The Living Proof”

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  1. Mae A. says:

    Thank you for sharing your stories. I felt the excitement you felt when you meet Darren. I never met him but just reading your story, I got excited. That’s how powerful your story is to me. Darren is indeed an inspiration to all his fans. He doesn’t know it but he is. I am glad to be a Darrenatics and I know you are too.

  2. herliemae says:

    Thank you Zarah for sharing your experience to us Darrenatics!..i was teary eyed while reading your story, really Darren is a living proof who gives inspiration to others…i was happy when you replied when i once comment to Darrenatics Cagayan de Oro page. That you share to me your experience in Butuan City, i told you i was really “suya” because you get to meet Darren in person and even took a selfie wtih him..i was also there in the concert but i only got a green ticket :( but still very happy coz atleast im one of the many supporters of Darren who got a chance to see him perform live! Remember you told me that maybe next time given a chance

  3. herliemae says:

    Thank you Zarah for sharing your experience to us Darrenatics!..i was teary eyed while reading your story, really Darren is a living proof who gives inspiration to others…i was happy when you replied when i once comment to Darrenatics Cagayan de Oro page. That you share to me your experience in Butuan City, i told you i was really “suya” because you get to meet Darren in person and even took a selfie wtih him..i was also there in the concert but i only got a green ticket :( but still very happy coz atleast im one of the many supporters of Darren who got a chance to see him perform live! Remember you told me that maybe next time given a chance i will get to see Darren in person not just from afar but face to face hehehehehehe (hoping!!!) Once again, Thank You Zrah!!!! :)

  4. Rolando says:

    it was a nice experience .. see it is not even a year when this kid introduce himself in the the entertainment industry but he is continuing captured the heart of many people at all ages . its is may be because his unique personality he is a very humble and talented person . I cant wait for his first album and soon to see him in a big silver screen. Go Darren lot of people loves you just continue keep your feet firmly planted on the ground GOD bless….

  5. Joshua Balabbo says:

    Hayyyyssss. Friend kita sa Twitter. :) I don’t know how to email. I have a story.

  6. Na inspired nmn po ako ng sobra sa pag share nyo po ng napka ganda nyong karanasan:)

  7. Marie Herreta says:

    Thanks for sharing! I was deeply touched and truly can relate with what you were sharing – maybe, all of us Darrenatics share the same feeling – the joy that succumb unto us everytime we get to watch him perform, to see him in TV and to hear about him. Kami man nga mga young daughters ko, ritual na namin na iplay continuously ang downloaded videos ng the voice performances ni Darren (including ang mga comments ng judges).
    tamang tama ang comment ni Coach Lea- may lumalabas na joy sa lahat ng performances niya. At tama rin ang sinabi ni Coach Sarah na forever niyang yayakapin ang lahat ng stage na tutungtungan. Addictive nga si Big D di lang dahil sa angkin niyang galing but ang combination ng kanyang galing, itsura, good attitude, behavior and manners! Tunay siyang kahali-halina. Sabi ng isa kong daughter sa bunso ko (both are fans of darren) O PALAGI KANG MANGONGOPO AT MAGTETENKYU HA KASI SI KUYA DARREN GANUN DIN… We pray to our God that continuously bless Darren – in ll her performances and in all her endeavors! Nawa’y sa kabila ng katanyagan ay manatili siyang isang mabuti at mabait na bata… :-)

  8. Marife Brown says:

    Thank you Zarah for sharing your great experienced with our one and only Total Performer Darren. I’m one of Darrenatics also like you, that dreaming to meet him personally. Which, your dream was already happened. I was teary eyed while reading your awesome experience with him with your Co-Darrenatics. Me, myself, I’m looking forward to meet him this coming Dec. 28 & 29 in CA, even I’m thousand miles away from there. To experience your “Unkabogable” happiness when you met Darren Espanto. Like you, i want to take a selfie with him and tell him how he inspires the life of thousands of thousands of followers of him all over the world. I’m so very happy about your extremely happiness during that day. One thing that i wish for him is not to change, that he will always keep his feet on the ground and always stay humble.

    • Mae A. says:

      Hi Marife,

      I will also be attending the Dec 28 concert. Where are you located? i am here in Agoura Hills, CA borderline between LA and Ventura County.I hope to see you there.

  9. Lhian says:

    Hi, everyone. I would just like to share what Ma’am Flora (School administrator- Enfant Cheri Learning Center/ concert organizer) commented on Zarah’s Article:

    Hi, Zarah! Winning friends is also one of the beautiful things that go with Darren’s coming to Butuan. We have that special connection through a common interest; that is, Darren Espanto. We never regretted having him in our 23rd Founding Anniversary and I personally believe I was led by God because he was the first artist that came into my mind although I never watched TVK. He’s indeed a total performer and has become an inspiration to the youth by his being a persevering young man, a good son and a good Filipino as evidenced by his being respectful and his fluency in the Filipino language. It is a challenge that I posed to our students, to learn our own language by heart. Sabi ko nga, kung kaya ni Darren na tubong Canada, mas kaya natin dahil nandito tayo sa Pilipinas. His stint with us may be was short but it has carved a special place in our hearts that will forever be remembered. Nice article, Zarah! God bless you and God bless the Darrenatics!

    source: Zarah Casiño’s Facebook Account

  10. bam_espanto says:

    I want to be your friend ! Can !?

  11. Jocelyn Jarin says:

    Great story:) Darren has the same effect on me!

  12. Judie says:

    I promise to myself, after i graduate as Marketing Student i’ll work at manila and find my destiny there and of course to meet Darren in person :))) He is really one of a kind kid na dapat ay maging inspiration to all darrenatics :))))) GO GOO GO Darren :))) hope you will visit Surigao Del sur soon SPECIALLY TANDAG cITY :)) mARAMI KAMI dARRENCATICS DITO :)))

  13. Zarah says:

    Thank you po talaga sa mga lahat na nag comment sa article ko. Hehehe. At sa mga hindi pa nakakakita kay Darren sa personal, aabot din yung araw na mag kikita kayo. Just grab every opportunity na dadating. He’s really a nice and decent kid and super mahiyain. at sobrang gwapo. :)

  14. Pia Garcia says:

    idoL na idoL ko talaga si DARREN tulad niyo .. gustO ko siyangmakiTainpersOn.. <3

    • anq qanda naman ng experience..muh..sana sa susunod makIta ko na ng harapan at makapagselfie with him also..yan talaga ang wish ko nuon p man..i’m also a fan of Mr. Domino since nag audition siya sa TVKids..laqeh ko siyang inaabAngan sa ASAP pero minsan lAng siya nagpi-pErform dun.

  15. This message is for Zarah Casino. I am from Cagayan de oro city but currently I am now living In California. How can I get in touch with you? I am Darrenatics also. Please send me an email . If you have a globe cel phone, please tell me so I could call you. I will go on vacation to CDO this January 2015.

    • zarah says:

      Hi. I’m sorry for the very late reply. You can add me on FB. Zarah Casiño.. Follow on IG: @rylaizarren and Twitter @rylaizarah

      I hope you can still be able to read my reply.

  16. ♥•♥V says:

    oo nga.. I Agree with you… The moment that I saw and heard Darren sing and dance, Even if he just perfomed 6 minutes and even Ive waited 3 hours just to see him… That 6 minutes is the best 6 minutes of my life… ♥•♥

  17. abby says:

    waaah :3 nateteary-eye po ako habang binabasa yung article nyo po :) answerte nyo po to meet darren personally and an inch away lang talaga :) Thank you po sa magandang article :)

  18. Mary Rose Ann Sala says:

    Thanks Ate Zarah for sharing your story. Naiinggit po ako sayo dahil nakita mo at nakausap mo siya sa personal. I hope na sana makita at makausap ko rin siya sa personal.

  19. …hai po pano po mag write ng story…i have something to write din po…

  20. JoellynAplacador_Darrenatics says:

    Paano po ba maging official na Darrenatics ? Yung makakapunta po sa mga mallshows and concert. and be updated with the Darrenatics team ? Paano po mag apply ?

  21. norjanah says:

    sa iligan na lng sana

  22. renz alvayozhky says:

    nag register na ako for darrenatics member but hnd ako ksama sa fans corner how un ?>…………

  23. kayla saron says:

    Panu Po B ang Magregister To Be a oFFIciAl DArreNATTICS

  24. maryjoy says:

    sna poh punta ka rin dito sa amin

    • sana makaharap at maka pag pa picture din ako with DARREN

      • dumating ako last july2014 from dubai may napansin ako sa mga kabataan dito sabi nila dapat si darren ang nanalo hindi si lyca dahil may pisonet kami naririnig yung mga kanta ng tvk1 pag nagyoutube sila pero hndi ko masyadong iniintidi mostly si darren at lyca ang pinapanood nila sa youtube,kaya sabi ko mapanoorin ko nga ang blind audition ni darren sa tvk1 nung napanood ko “grabe galing ng batang ito from canada tapos ang galing magsalita ng tagalog at ang guwapo,chinito.cute ,magalang pa may “po” at “opo”…simula nun thru facebook,instagram,twitter pina-follow ko na yung update about darren nung mapanood ko si darren sa kristv at sinabi ni darren pupunt siya ng farmers plaza ay pumunta ako sabi time na para makita ko siya ng personal at dun nakita ko siya ng personal sabi nga “ay totoo nga guwapo at chinito siya at humble at may pagpapahalaga sa mga bagay na binibigay sa kanya ng mga fans kahit maliit o malaking gift ang bibigay mo sa kanya! kaya ang marami ang nag mamahal sa kanya at isa na ako dun, sabi ko sayang wla kaming selfie kaya ng mag post ang isa sa member ng darrenatics cavitechapter na magkakaroon siya ng mini concert sa woodrige collage punta ako at last na meet ko na darren at napa sign ko na yun album niya at solo photo niya na ako mismo ang kumuha nung nag show siya sa farmers plaza at selfie.. sobra akong happy..godbless po!

  25. Dear Darren Espanto,

    gusto ko lang iparating sayo na super idol kita.. gusto kitang panooring magperform sa personal at makita na maka selfie man lang at sabihing idol na idol kita :) . pero malayo eh. taga ilocos kasi ako kaya pinapanood nalang kita sa youtube .alam mo ang dami kong collection na pictures mo dito sa cp ko, gustong gusto talaga kitang makita idol darren , sana bigyan mo ako ng pagkakataong makita ka ,makaselfie at sabihing pinapahanga mo ako . stay healthly humble mabait gwapo .. iloveyou darren ..

    Mark kim Baldovi

  26. AR Cabaya says:

    excited kami before dto sa ABRA we’ve waited kahit na sinabing di matutuloy si Darren at JK dito talagang naghintay kami kasi umasa pa rn kami na pupunta si Darren dito grabve kahit malayo kami sa venue pumunta pa rin kami kasi gustong gusto naming makita si Darren in person pero sayang di man lang natuloy grabe pero ok na rin un mahal na mahal namin si Darren kahit na ganun ang nangyari.. we hope next year pupunta na siya dito and sana matuloy na haha ..

  27. hi.im judy isa po ako sa mga super patay at baliwna baliw kay ‘DARREN ESPANTO” 2x na sya naka visit sa lugar namin pero never ko pa po sya na meet…kasama po ako sa fans club nya pero maeron lang talagang walang awa nag erase at nagpalit ng password ko kaya hanggang ngayon hindi ko parin na open..naisipan kong gumawa ulit ng bago at para maka follow kay ”IDOL”sana kasama parin ako sa fansclub at sana someday magkaroon din sya ng ”FANSDAY”para masaya…heheheyun lang po and ”GO GO & LOVE U DARREN”hehehe

  28. Yam says:

    Sweet!! Through Darren we made a lot of friends.. from east to west, from north to south..
    I’ll see you soon Zar.. =))))

  29. Spotted si Ate Zarah Casiño from TeamCDO! haha :D

  30. …or si Ate Zarah talaga gumawa ng Article na’to.. :3

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