The growing global influence of K-pop shows no signs of stopping. From the music to the choreography, and even to fashion, girls and boys have followed the footsteps of their idols.
And it's not just regular people who are following the Hallyu wave. Like any of us, there are times when celebrities have unadulterated fangirling moments over their idols, too. Case in point: Ella Cruz was all starry-eyes when she performed in front of BLACKPINK at the Awesome Live event in Jakarta, Indonesia. Ella, together with her group Gabriela, left the Korean girl group astounded with their dancing moves, earning the "Awesome Cover" award by Samsung, which ABS-CBN Lifestyle was able to witness.
This lucky Blink first discovered her love for dancing when her mom (who was also a dancer), taught her basic dance moves. She then started joining contests, tried different moves until she discovered K-pop. "Nahilig ako sa K-pop. Eh lahat ng songs nila may sayaw." A true K-pop fan since the second generation of K-pop (2NE1, Girl's Generation), Ella became so eager to learn more moves and dancing styles because of them. "Mas lalo akong sumasayaw pag K-pop yung kanta."
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On our way home from Jakarta, Ella shared that she still couldn't believe her luck, "Never in my wildest dreams ko naisip na mag pe-perform ako (in front of BLACKPINK). Palagi lang, mapapanood ko sila or magkaka-photo ako with them. Laging ganun lang pero yung magpe-perform ka sa harap nila, na papanoorin nila ako or mabababad yung attention nila sa akin, never ko naman naisip 'yon."
This Blink plays no favorites—she loves them all equally. "Balanced ako sa lahat. Si Jennie sa fashion, sa pagiging sobrang maganda pag nasa stage. Si Lisa sa dance at sa power niya. Si Jisoo yung personality niya, yung pagiging genuine niya. Si Rose sa singing naman niya and yung angelic face niya. Lahat sila may iba’t ibang character kasi. So talagang balanced mo silang mamahalin lahat or i-idolize lahat."
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Ella shared how BLACKPINK influenced her in so many ways. Just like the girl group, Ella's dancing style is very hip hop but girly, or what they call, "fem" from French word femme. "Alam mong medyo sexy, medyo may pitik." Though like any performer, Ella says she's continously learning more styles. "Kailangan mo palawakin yung kaalaman ko sa pagsasayaw para hindi lang sa isang bagay ako magaling, kaya ko din ibang klaseng sayaw."
When it comes to fashion, Ella mentioned the girls as one of the most influencial style icons of her time. "Sila talaga yung nagpapauso ng magiging fashion ng mga ka-age ko ngayon or fashion ng taon. Kung baga susundan mo talaga, gagawin mo yung fashion nila," she said. She also says that the girls' "airport look"—casual and laidback '90s-inspired street style—is not far from her own fashion style. "Hindi ako ma-dress eh. Parang masyadong girly, hindi ko kaya. Gusto ko komportable ako pag umaalis. Jogging pants lang or t-shirt." Her essentials include: wide leg pants, loose shirt or cropped top (on days when she feels sexy), and rubber shoes (she swears you'll never see her in sandals!). "Wide leg pants pinaka mare-recommend ko. Joggers or shorts. 'Di ako mahilig sa skinny jeans. Ayoko nagdyi-jeans. So, ever since nag wide leg pants sila, yon medyo na pu-pull off ko naman yung wide leg pants."
But beyond fashion and dancing, Ella reflected on how she herself aims to become an inspiration to her fans as well, "Ang pinaka aim ko naman talaga is ma-inspire ko yung mga tao when it comes to reaching my dreams. Marami akong na-inspire na 'uy, yung mga imposibleng mangyari, possible pala.' Gusto ko din maging blessing ako sa ibang tao, i-share yung talent ko and mas ipakita ko sa tao yung sarili ko... parang hindi ka nag papanggap para mahalin ka nila."
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Photos from @ellacruz | Special thanks to Samsung and EON