22 April 2008 | 12:10 AM
By Jayson Cruz Luna, Reporter
Now she has some big things to show that a small country like hers can produce singing sensations faster than the world can say, To go.
Margaret Yu of Davao sang Whitney Houstons I Have Nothing at the recent Voice of McDonalds 2008 in Orlando, Florida, and came out as first-runner up. She got a standing ovation and $10,000.
Yu, 22, was among 3,600 contestants from McDonalds stores in 118 countries. A worship leader who sings in a church choir in Davao, she said she dedicated her winning song to God.
Natercia Pintor of Portugal won the grand prize.
The judges, evidently, were impressed with what they had heard, said juror and multi-platinum artist Ne-Yo. I was blown away by the talent. They [contestants] brought the house down. It was really difficult to choose a winner. I applaud McDonalds for doing this.
Two of the other judges were Jody Gerson, co-president of Sony/ATV Music Publishing, and Ken Hertz, LLP senior partner.
Two other Filipinos made it to the semifinalsCanada-based Candido Revilles, who eventually placed third, and Yus best friend, Paulina Susan Bacarat, also from Davao.
The contest is the biggest singing competition of its kind for 1.6 million McDonalds employees from around the globe and from more than 30,000 restaurants in over 100 countries.
Yu and Bacarat will be the international fast-food chains singing ambassadors. They will help raise funds for McDonalds Charities, which looks after poor children in the Philippines.