It took his warning that the Philippines could be the next Wuhan and his tribute to frontliners to make DJ Loonyo win over the hearts of Filipinos during the coronavirus pandemic.
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Born and raised in Cagayan De Oro, DJ, choreographer, and now-viral TikTok performer Rhemuel Lunio started dancing way back in high school. He didn't do hip-hop at first, though, but instead, “I started with jazz. Then I was drawn to hip-hop and urban culture when I began pursuing my professional dancing career,” the China-based 28-year-old tells ABS-CBN Lifestyle. “I was trained by some of the best dance heads in the Philippines such as Kenjhons as well as Laurence Chua and Patrick Romero from the Philippine Allstars and Rockstars. Rock*Well was eventually formed when I started holding workshops.”
DJ Loonyo performed with Rock*Well around the world and spun for some of the biggest clubs in Manila when the opportunity to work in China presented itself in 2018. He then took the craft more seriously. “My responsibility as a son who really loves and supports the needs of my family and as the leader and founder of Rock*Well are my main motivations. I still work with some of my guys from Rock*Well. I constantly pray and ask for guidance on how I can pave more paths for them—not just locally, but internationally,” he says.
Now, most people know him from social media. He’s active on Facebook, Instagram, and, of course, TikTok, where he uploads easy-to-follow dance covers to 2000s hits.
And around the time he became viral, DJ Loonyo shot up to become his company's CEO. He has since credited his success, yes, to faith.
“I come from a challenging background; life hasn't always been easy for me,” DJ Loonyo admits. “People come and go, but my family and God are constant. I’ve been through dark spots too, but at the end of the day, He always pulled me through. I owe a lot to Him. Even though a lot of people aren’t used to hearing stuff about faith, I make it a point to shout out how much He loves us all—especially now that more people are listening to me.” He gets very cerebral talking about religion. “I respect different religions! I believe we have the same God. God is within us, God is the universe, God is everything. At the end of the day, strengthening our faith keeps our lights on.”
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Ever since his rise, DJ Loonyo has since packed his schedule with meetings, dance challenges, and workouts in between. Of these things keeping him busy, he likes to think of health as his priority. He eats right and works out regularly (just check out that bod!), true, but at this point that the coronavirus is continuing to spread across the world, he especially pushes for the importance of mental health. “I always say this: Strengthen and prepare the mind. Reading books and articles, and watching awareness videos helps prevent negative energy from corrupting the body,” he shares.
Is DJ Loonyo also keeping busy in the love department? Good news for the ladies: This good-looking millennial is currently single! In a previous interview with the Momshies of Magandang Buhay, he expressed that when the time is right he hopes to meet someone who is God-fearing, family-oriented, and wise.
As he sends some good vibes to his fans online and in quarantine, DJ Loonyo anticipates the end of the lockdown for just a simple reason. Nope, he says it's not the projects the Philippines has piled up, but finally getting to see his family again—including his Rock*Well and Rockstars groups!
For now, fans can continue to watch DJ Loonyo dance online with a purpose.
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Images taken from DJ Loonyo's Instagram and Facebook accounts. Interview by Angela Sy.