Darren Espanto Edit

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Darren Espanto
Background information
Birth name Darren Lyndon Espanto
Also known as Mr. Domino
Born May 24, 2001 (age 13)

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Genres Pop, R&B
Occupations Singer, performer
Years active 2012–present
Associated acts Sarah Geronimo (The Voice Kidscoach)
Website Darren Espanto onInstagram
Notable instruments
Bass guitar,[1] piano

Darren Lyndon Gonzales Espanto (born May 24, 2001), commonly known as Darren Espanto, is a Filipino Canadian singer. He is part of ABS-CBN's Star Magic.[2]

He made his first television appearance at the age of ten when he joined YTV's reality television The Next Star in 2012, and was included among its Top 6. [3] In 2014, he went back to the Philippines and auditioned for ABS-CBN's reality singing competition The Voice Kids,[4] finishing in second place.[5]

Contents Edit


  • 1 Biography
    • 1.1 Early life
    • 1.2 2012-2013: The Next Star
    • 1.3 2014-present: The Voice Kids
  • 2 Artistry
    • 2.1 Influences
  • 3 Personal life and education
  • 4 Filmography
    • 4.1 Television series
    • 4.2 Variety/reality shows
  • 5 Discography
    • 5.1 Singles
    • 5.2 Music videos
    • 5.3 Concerts
  • 6 Notes
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links

Biography[edit] Edit

Early life[edit] Edit

Espanto was born on May 24, 2001 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. His family includes his filipino parents Marinel and Lyndon Espanto, who emigrated from Nueva Vizcaya,[6] Philippines,[7] and his younger sister named Lynelle.[4]

Espanto started singing at the age of two. In manila bulletin interview Espanto stated that: "When I was little, I would listen to some songs and I'd try to copy the tune to it."[8] As a toddler, Espanto serenaded his parents with the tunes from The Lion King or Sleeping Beauty in their home.[9] His parents were supportive of his dreams and talents.[8]

Before joining The Next Star, Espanto first joined a singing contest for young Filipinos in Edmonton,[3] and won during the Masters Finals of Pinoy Singing Sensation on November 19, 2011.[10]

2012-2013: The Next Star[edit] Edit

In 2012, ten-year-old Espanto auditioned for YTV's reality television The Next Star Season 5, singing Bruno Mars' "Grenade". One of the judges, Keshia Chanté, cried and told him that his voice was 'unbelievable' and 'controlled'. Judge Mark Spicoluk, on the other hand, stated that he 'lacked stage presence'. Nevertheless, after Chante asked him if he was ready, she and Tara Oram said yes, earning him the 'golden ticket'.

He continued to be selected onto its Top 6, singing pop songs such as Rihanna's "Only Girl (in the World)"[11] and Maroon 5's "Payphone"[10] among others. He also had his own single and music video entitled "Gotta Give A Little Extra",[12] as well as two other singles, "Now"[1] and "Oh Oh Santa"[13] with the other five finalists. Ultimately, he lost to the 14-year-old Brooklyn Roebuck, after singing his own single during the finals. He was the youngest finalist in the history of the show to be included in the Top 6.[9][8]

In 2013, Espanto had his first series as a guest in YTV's Life with Boys.[14]

2014-present: The Voice Kids[edit] Edit

During ABS-CBN's The Voice Kids Season 1 auditions aired on June 1, 2014, Espanto performed Jessie J's "Domino", which he formerly sang during The Next Star at age 11.[15][7] Coaches Sarah Geronimo and Bamboo Mañalac both pressed their buttons for him, vocalizing that he 'can be groomed to be a recording artist, a total package'.[15][16]Although Espanto revealed that he was Manalac's front act during one of his concerts in Canada, he still picked Geronimo stating that she could help him a lot in the music industry.[10][17]

Espanto eventually advanced to the finals after singing Whitney Houston's "One Moment in Time" during the live semi-finals held at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila.[17] He was the second one to receive the highest votes, after Lyca Gairanod.[18] During the first round of the finals which was a power ballad theme,[6]Espanto performed Basil Valdez's song "Ngayon". Salonga left a warning to older performers; "To every person Darren idolized, this is a warning to all of you: this kid will outshine you someday".[Note 1] Once again, Geronimo praised him and said that despite his talent, Espanto never showed superiority and instead, listened to his coach.[19] At the end of the competition, he once again came in second after Lyca Gairanod.[5] According to The Filipino Journal, an Edmontonian follower of the show Brenda Kaminsky believed that Espanto should have won the prize based on technicalities: "both Darren and Lyca are winners, the former deserved the trophy and the latter, deserved the prizes."[6]

The Voice Kids Philippines season 1 performances and results
Week Theme Song Original Artist Date Result
Blind Audition N/A "Domino" Jessie J June 1, 2014 Sarah and Bamboo turned

Joined Team Sarah

Battle Rounds N/A "What Makes You Beautiful"

(vs. JM and JC Urquico vs. Sam Shoaf)

One Direction July 12, 2014 Saved by Coach
Sing-offs N/A "Listen" Beyoncé July 13, 2014 Saved by Coach
Semifinals N/A "One Moment In Time" Whitney Houston July 19, 2014 Saved by Public Votes (2nd Highest Votes)
Finals Round One: Power Ballad "Ngayon" Basil Valdez July 26, 2014 1st Runner-up
Round Two: Upbeat "Somebody To Love" Justin Bieber July 26, 2014
Round Three: Duet with a celebrity "You Are My Song" (with Martin Nievera) Martin Nievera July 27, 2014

In August, Espanto officially became a part of ABS-CBN's training and management center Star Magic.[2]

Artistry[edit] Edit

Influences[edit] Edit

Espanto cites music inspirations as varied as Bruno Mars, Beyoncé, Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson.[8] Espanto stated in an interview with that he is truly being inspired by a lot of Filipino singers, "I idolized Martin Nievera, Gary Valenciano, Jed Madela, Lani Misalucha, coach Sarah (Geronimo), and Angeline Quinto".[Note 2][20]

Personal life and education[edit] Edit

At age 11,Darren Espanto attended Grade 6 at St. Jude Elementary in Calgary,[3] but went to the Philippines in 2014 for The Voice Kids. After getting through the auditions, he returned to Canada to write his advanced test in St. Cyril as he will come back to the Philippines. During this time, his father was with him, while his mother stayed in Canada with her little sister, Lynelle Espanto.[4]

Filmography[edit] Edit

Television series[edit] Edit

Year Date Aired Network Title Character/Role
2013 July 23 YTV Life with Boys[21]

Variety/reality shows[edit] Edit

Year Date Aired Network Show
2012 July 16 - December 18 YTV The Next Star
2014 June 1 - July27 ABS-CBN The Voice Kids
August 10 Gandang Gabi Vice
August 14 Tapatan ni Tunying
Note: Guest appearances in shows are not included.

Discography[edit] Edit

Singles[edit] Edit

Year Title Album Details
2011 "Gotta Give A Little Extra" YTV's the Next Star - Season 5 Top 6[22]
  • Producer: Rezza Brothers
  • Co-singers: Brooklyn Roebuck, Ryan Hawken, Amer Dhaliwal, Grace Johnston, and Issy Dahl
  • Producer: Jasmine Denham
"Oh Oh Santa"

Music videos[edit] Edit

Year Title Album
2011 "Gotta Give A Little Extra" YTV's the Next Star - Season 5 Top 6
"Oh Oh Santa"[13]

Concerts[edit] Edit

The following are Darren Espanto's solo concerts:

Year Title Details
2014 Boses ng Bulilit... Kami Ulit![23]
  • Date: July 31, Thursday
  • Venue: Resorts World Manila

Languages Edit

Edit links

  • This page was last modified on 24 August 2014 at 07:01.
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