Pinoy passes blind auditions of The Voice of Ireland

Posted at 01/20/2014 11:33 AM | Updated as of 01/21/2014 8:34 AM

MANILA, Philippines - A Filipino is hoping to impress audiences in Ireland with his singing prowess.

Forty-one year old Rowell Villones performed "Nella Fantasia" by Sarah Brightman for his audition on the reality singing competition "The Voice of Ireland."

Only one judge Niall Breslin, also known as Bressie, turned around for Villones but this was enough to send him through to the next round.

"It was note perfect. There was no pitching issues. You knew the song inside out, but you were so comfortable," Bressie said.

"I might choose songs you're not so comfortable with. You're gonna have to work hard. But I promise you if you work with me, we will get fantastic tunes and there's some beautiful songs people might not expect, but I already know in my head. People like you already keep me awake at night, thinking of songs. They're the people I want in my team because it makes it harder and I like having a bit of a challenge," he added.

Another judge Kian Egan, a former member of Westlife, also complimented Villones on his performance. "Very nice performance indeed. The most enjoyable moment out of this is Bressie's going to work with an opera singer," he said.

Egan also explained why he didn't turn around for Villones. "It was really great but the reason I didn't turn was when it comes to vocals and stuff like that, I wouldn't have a clue how to direct you. It would have to be all on your shoulders. Bressie seemed pretty confident when he hit that button," he said.

Judge Jamelia admitted she was surprised to see Villones. "I didn't expect you, you know, quite alright looking," she said, giggling.

"I'm blushing," Villones replied.

The Cranberries Dolores O'Riordan asked Villones why he chose that particular Brightman song as his audition piece.

"I usually pick from classical music, country, rock, maybe it shows my vocal range," Villones said.

O'Riordan also praised Villones. "I thought you were quite good from what I heard. Well done," she said.

Many overseas Filipinos have joined reality singing competitions, such as Joseph Apostol who appeared on "The Voice UK" and Cheesa Laureta who appeared on "The Voice" in the US.

Recently, a Filipina caregiver Rose Fostanes surprised many by winning X-Factor Israel.