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Ian Veneracion on jumping off a plane, running away from zombies, and singing with the ‘principal’

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From being a child star to matinee idol and later on an action star, Ian Veneracion has concentrated on acting for most parts of his career.

IAN VENERACION

IAN VENERACION

It’s only recently that people discovered he is a musician. But he has been playing piano and electric guitar since age seven, then writing songs and singing.

“Music is personal to me,” he told Bulletin Entertainment. “I value it as much as I value myself as a person, but I never brag about my talents. I’m the type of guy who wouldn’t be first to sing in videoke even if you ask me several times.”

Ian started to become comfortable showcasing his “other side” while he was doing ABS-CBN’s “A Love To Last.” His role required him to play instruments and eventually use his voice to win the heart of his leading lady, Bea Alonzo.

He finally allowed himself to explore more of his music side when he felt he had established himself as an actor by winning Best Actor at the 38th Oporto International Film Festival in Portugal.

“I guess it’s all about the timing,” he smiled.

If there’s one thing he dreams of now, it is to be a rock star like his idols as The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Sting, and U2.

Well, Ian’s passion for singing has brought him to the international stage. By the time you’re reading this, the good looking actor would be in Canada sharing the stage with Grammy winner Patti Austin for a concert tour.

“I’m excited and nervous at the same time,” he confessed. “I mean, that’s Patti Austin and I’m with, like, a principal. I’m scared I might go out of tune.”

His songs “We’re All Alone” and “I’ll Miss You The Most” are available on Spotify.

Asked if an album is already in the offing, he said, “Let’s see.”

‘Near-death’ experience
If you’re following Ian’s Instagram, chances are you’ll agree he is some sort of a daredevil.

Aside from being actor and singer, he is also painter, pilot, motocross racer, skydiver, paraglider, and scuba diver – truly this outdoor enthusiast.

A few months ago, he scaled the Nepalese side of the Himalayan mountains with his son, Draco.

“It’s a bucket list that we ticked off. I told him that if you survive there, you could survive anywhere. I’m glad he did it,” he shared, adding he plans to climb Mount Kinabalu next.

Quite the adventurer, huh?

“Yes, of course!” he laughed. “You know, being alone in nature is what I really enjoy. I think there’s wisdom there eh. I’m curious to see how I will lose my temper, and how I will figure things out.”

Thing is, Ian had a near-death experience at one point.

He shared: “So I joined some students for sky diving in Clark. It was 8 in the morning. I asked the instructor to, ‘Hey, let’s have one jump first.’ What I usually do kasi, even if you’re sky diving, you’ll see small puffs of clouds. I smell it, and sometimes ­— and I tell my kids this — ‘binubulsa ko ang clouds.’

“So, I saw a cloud but something told me na don’t go. But stubborn that I am, I still for it. Suddenly, lightning struck and as I remember, there was also white and I became unconscious for a few seconds. Imagine seeing lightning under your feet. That’s wow.”

“I guess those are the moments I live for,” he added.

Zombie movie
Talking about other showbiz projects, Ian is cast in thriller film “Block Z” alongside Julia Barretto and Joshua Garcia.

It is said to be an action-packed zombie movie that will be a first for the Philippines.

Ian is confident it is something not to miss, especially as it is under the awarded indie director Mikhail Red.

“When I read the script, I told everyone, ‘Ang ganda!’” he enthused.

The actor revealed it is not the typical zombie movie. In fact, he said the monsters depart from the slow “The Walking Dead” kind of zombies, in favor of “fast, more infected and full speed running and chasing.”

“It’s legit. I’m confident it can be shown internationally,” he claimed.

Before working with Mikhail, Ian revealed he exchanged notes with former leading lady Bea, whom the director worked with in the film “Eerie.”

“Actually she’s the first one I called, asking how direk works. And she said a lot of good things about him. We enjoy doing the film in very efficient ways,” he said.

Since he made his showbiz comeback, Ian has been paired with relatively younger actresses, the likes of Bea and Jodi Sta. Maria.

Who else does he want to work with, we asked.

“I don’t have a name in mind right now. But as long as hindi ako mag-mu-mukhang DOM, okay lang!” he laughed.

Touch of Divine
After his concert tour in Canada, Ian will be guest performer in Zsa Zsa Padilla’s concert “Totally Zsa Zsa!”

Being able to share the stage with the Divine Diva, the dashing actor said, makes him look legit as a singer.

“I literally fell off my chair when I heard this good news,” he shared. “I feel so honored to be chosen in this concert, especially since I’m only new in the music industry. I look forward to working with Ms. Zsa Zsa. We promise to give our best,” he shared.

Directed by Floy Quintos, “Totally Zsa Zsa!” is on May 16, 8 p.m. at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila.

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