SAMAL, Bataan – “Music speaks what cannot be expressed, soothes the mind and gives it rest, heals the heart and makes it whole, flows from heaven to the soul’” Angela Monet.
This is what you will see if you visit the website of X-Factor Australia’s 6th season grand winner, Marlisa Ann Punzalan with her rendition of the songs, Yesterday by the Beatles (her audition piece), Never Be the Same Again (duet with Jessica Maugoy, Australian Idol), and her debut single, Stand By You under Sony Music Entertainment.
Born in Sydney, Australia of Filipino parents, Lito and Ria Punzalan, both from Lalawigan of this town, Marlisa is a multiple winner of Gold Awards at the prestigious Sydney Eisteddfod Performing Arts Challenge 2009-2013. She started singing at the age of 4 and has been very passionate about her music. She supports a great number of Charity Events such as the World Childhood Foundation Concert where she helped raise $26K in support of needy children around the world.
Despite being the youngest contestant of the season, in fact she turned 15 right on the show last October 1, her mentor Ronan Keating has faith in her. In fact, he believed that the Pinay singer would win this year and she did! Guest mentor John Legend noted Marlisa’s vocal performance as beyond her years.
Marlisa describes her X Factor Journey as incredible because of the beautiful people around her, first her loving family, whom she considers as her rock and strength; the passionate and dedicated professionals behind the scenes like all the crew at X Factor for the unbelievable effort they put into the best talent show in Australia; Sony Music Entertainment, for the rare opportunity that they present to ordinary Australians like her starting a career in music; Ronan Keating for believing in her ability and nurturing her talent; her supporters, for getting behind her every single week and to the Lord above, for all the blessings.
After Jessica Sanchez’ dramatic success in the American Idol, Bataan once again takes the center stage in the international music scene with Marlisa’s feat. The people of Bataan, especially her relatives and kababayans in Samal are truly proud of her and will always stand by her.