Nora offers 'Handog' for Dolphy, cries onstage

Posted at 09/20/2012 5:21 PM | Updated as of 09/21/2012 8:25 AM

MANILA, Philippines -- Veteran actress Nora Aunor turned emotional on stage as she paid tribute to her "kumpare" at the all-star gathering for the late film icon Dolphy on Wednesday night.

An emotional Nora Aunor briskly exited the stage after delivering a speech in memory of
Dolphy during a tribute concert held at the SM Mall of Asia Arena on Wednesday night.

Aunor emotionally delivered a brief speech remembering the King of Philippine Comedy at the star-studded "Dolphy Alay Tawa" tribute concert at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

Dubbed the country's "superstar," Aunor had to merely recite the lyrics of "Handog," a song composed by Florante but was embraced by the late comedian.

"Tatanda at lilipas din kami, nguni't mayroong awiting iiwanan sa inyong ala-ala. Dahil, minsan, tayo'y nagkasama," said Aunor, who had lost her "golden" singing voice to a botched cosmetic procedure in Japan.

"Pareng Dolphy, hindi lamang mga awitin ang iniwan mo sa amin, hindi lamang ang galing mo sa pagsayaw at pagpapatawa," she said, proceeding with her tribute speech.

With a career in showbiz spanning 65 years, Dolphy started out as a dancer and chorus boy at the Avenue and Lyric Theaters, where he took on the name "Golay" for a time.

In 1952, he joined the stable of Sampaguita Pictures, and went on to co-star with Aunor in a number of films, among them "Kaming Matapong ang Apog," "Jack n' Jill" and "My Bugoy Goes to Congress."

"Ibinigay mo sa amin ang iyong buhay at pagkatao. Ikinwento mo mula nang ikaw ay ipinanganak sa mundo, hanggang sa ikaw ay kunin sa amin," Aunor said, turning emotional.

"Maraming, maraming salamat sa pagiging kumpare ko dahil kay Ian. Maraming, maraming salamat sa mga alaalang iniwan mo sa amin, kumpare," she continued.

Former actor Ian de Leon, Aunor's son with veteran actor Christopher de Leon, is a godson of Dolphy.

"Hinding-hindi ka namin makakalimutan kahit nasaan ka, sa puso ko nandito ka parin, hindi ka mawawala habang buhay. Mahal na mahal ka namin, pare. Mahal na mahal ka namin," Aunor said.

Pausing for a moment onstage, the veteran actress was then seen crying as she briskly exited the stage.

After Aunor's speech, Dolphy's family, led by his partner of 23 years actress-singer Zsa Zsa Padilla, thanked those involved in the tribute concert and sang "What a Wonderful World" for the finale number.

"Dolphy Alay Tawa" was held for the benefit of charity organizations, including Eyebank Foundation Philippines, Hope in a Bottle, Philippine Red Cross, and Dolphy Aid Para sa Pinoy Foundation.