For viral music sensation Charice Pempengco, appearing on Glee is a bit more than just another singing gig.
“I’m a Gleek,” confesses the singer, 18, who goes by the professional name of simply Charice. “So being on the show — it’s very exciting. I think it’s one of the show’s goal — to help teenagers make their dreams come true. It’s been amazing.”
It’s also been a pretty amazing ride for the Philippines-born Charice, whose rose to fame at 13 when YouTube footage of her singing performances became a sensation. Appearances on Ellen and Oprah followed, leading to last fall’s first appearance on Glee as the pint-sized diva rival Sunshine Corazon.
Still, despite all that success, it was never a given that’d she’d return to the Glee fold. Charice says the overwhelming support of Glee fans on the internet definitely played a part in her return. “It’s one of the reasons I’m back. I’ve been reading all their comments. Happy to see they’re excited.”
The singer credits her mom with recognizing her singing talent at a very early age.
“My mother is a vocalist in a band. And she came home to see me singing on the top of the table — Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On. So she discovered me.”
On this week’s Glee, Charice will tackle another Dion concert standard — Eric Carmen’s All By Myself.
“I was so happy when they gave me that song to sing. I’ve been singing it forever. I love that song.”
Beyond this week’s episode, Charice again claims to be in the dark about when and if her character will return for a third time.
“I don’t know if she (Sunshine) turns into a spy or starts helping the Glee club. I’m really excited to do more, but I don’t know what happens after this. “
Glee airs Tuesdays on Global.