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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.

Mar 3, 2023



ASHLEY ORTEGA is just one of the leads in her last drama series, “Widow’s Web.” Now, she is given a solo lead role in the new GMA Sportserye, “Hearts on Ice”, the first drama show that centers on figure skating. 

“I got so excited when they told me I’d do a show about figure skating,” says Ashley who is really an accomplished figure skater. 

“This is a dream come true for me kasi first love ko talaga ito. 

"I love figure skating movies like ‘The Cutting Edge’, ‘Blades of Glory’, ‘Ice Castles’. 

"Noon ko pa naiisip na sana gumawa sila ng show about figure skating. But I said, malabong mangyari kasi that means the whole production would shoot sa skating rink. 

"So pangarap lang talaga, kaya it came to me as a big surprise na heto, my dream is now a reality.”  

Her background in figure skating really paid off. 

“I really trained hard for it kasi three years old pa lang ako when my parents enrolled me sa figure skating lessons. I fell in love with it and it became a part of my life.”

When she joined showbusiness, she became more focused on acting. 

“Medyo nakalimutan ko, but for this show, I went back to the skating rink and I’m now proud to show to all the viewers my skills on ice. 

"This is also the chance to show them what a beautiful sport figure skating is. I”m really so thankful to GMA for giving me this opportunity. 

"And also kay Lord. When I was first informed about this, naiyak talaga ako at nagpasalamat kay Lord kasi I can feel mahal na mahal Niya talaga ako.” 

Shooting the show proved to be very tiring. 

“We can only shoot kapag sarado na ang mall, para we can use their ice skating rink,” she says. 

“We shoot from 10 PM to 10 AM, before the mall opens again. On my own, I also train for two hours everyday. Sumakit talaga ang legs ko and my feet got sore. But every time may masakit, 

"I think of it as a blessing kasi ginusto ko ito, pinangarap ko ito, now na ibinigay sa akin, I have no right to complain. It’s important to always have a positive attitude.”

What is her role? 

“I play Pauline Bravo and my nickname is Ponggay. Mother ko si Tita Amy Austria as Libay Bravo, a former figure skater. 

"She turned her back on the sport after her friend, Rita Avila as Yvanna Campos, betrayed her. 

"Tita Rita is the mother of former Miss Philippines Earth, Roxie Smith as Monique, a balikbayan who becomes my best friend and later, my chief rival as a figure skater.”   

Her leading man is Xian Lim as Lawrence Razon or Enzo, an over-confident and arrogant man who comes from a rich family who’ll later fall for Ponggay.  

Xian trained hard in ice skating to prepare for his role.   

“I really take my hat off to Xian kasi he really trained for the show for five months and it’s good he’s a fast learner,” Ashley adds. 

“As an actor, it’s easy to see that he is very professional and passionate about his craft. Napakasipag niya mag-training and when we train together, laging mas nauuna pa siya sa akin sa skating rink.”


She also wants to commend their director, Dominic Zapata. 

“Ang galing ni Direk Dom in capturing the shots while we’re ice skating. We have a happy set and all the cast and crew are so cooperative. 

"The show is not only about the sport but it also highlights the importance of family, friendship, love, how to cope with failure and rejection, and how to forgive. It’s really very inspirational.” 

The big powerhouse cast also includes senior actors Tonton Gutierrez as Gerald, brother of Rita and former BF of Amy; Lito Pimentel as Ruben, Ashley’s loving dad; Ina Feleo as Coach Wendy, an excellent skater who sacrificed her career for love’; Cheska Inigo as Vivian, Xian’s controlling mom who conspires with Rita in making life miserable for Ashley.

Also in the cast is young GMA Sparkle star Kim Perez as Bogs, the secret admirer of Ashley and best friend of Xian, and a real life skater who’s a member of national skating team, Skye Chua as Sonja, a competitive skater who bullies both Ashley and Monique.  

It also features real life ice skating champ Michael Martinez in a special appearance. This will start airing on GMA Telebabad on March 13, replacing "Luv I: Caught in His Arms".