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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Feb 16, 2011

Markki Stroem gets to act on Next to Normal

MARKKI STROEM lost to Jovit Baldivino in “Pilipinas Got Talent” but most people predicted ABS will be build him up as a matinee idol like Sam Milby since he’s tall at 5’11”, hunky and has movie star good looks. Nothing of the sort happened. Nearly a year after the first PGT, Markki finally gets to act in TV5’s “Luv Crazy” with Star Factor winner Eula Caballero and also gets to do theatre in the acclaimed Broadway musical “Next to Normal” paired with Bea Garcia. “I’m under contract with ABS but since they don’t have a project for me, I accepted the offer of Direk Joyce Bernal to do ‘Luv Crazy’ with TV5,” he says. “I asked their permission and they allowed me to do it, also my audition for ‘Next to Normal’.”

Born on March 21, 1987, he’s the first of three boys, his brothers being 15 and 12. His mom is a Pinay from Antipolo while his dad is a Norwegian working with Asian Development Bank. They met in a fun run in Manila. Since his dad gets assigned to various countries, Markki has travelled all over the world. He studied in La Salle Greenhills, Frankfurt in Germany, I.S. in Makati, and finished HRM in Switzerland. He has always wanted to sing and his goal is to make it in Broadway. He has had three girlfriends. The first was a Pinay, followed by a Fil-Italian and the last, an Italian-Swedish girl in Switzerland who cheated on him. He writes songs and he gets to sing the earliest song he has composed to Eula Caballero in “Luv Crazy”. How is it working with her? “She’s a very quiet girl who just listens to everyone around her and she learns fast. In the show, I play a conceited guy, but this is just a front as my girlfriend cheated on me. The title of our story is ‘Love is a Beach’, shot in Zambales. It’s shown Sundays at 3:15 PM the whole month of February.”

He has appeared in school plays before but “Next to Normal” is his first professional theatre appearance. “It’s great working with theatre veterans like Menchu Yulo and Jett Pangan. Their discipline is infectious and I’m gaining so much from the experience. Everyone’s punctual so I come to rehearsals 20 minutes before the appointed time. The training has made my voice reach higher levels I’ve never achieved before. I’m really thankful to be part of this play of Atlantis Productions.”

“Next to Normal” will run from March 11 to 27 at RCBC Plaza Makati. For tickets, call Atlantis at 892-7078 or 840-1187.