NEW YORK?Filipino singing prodigy Charice Pempengco has a long-term plan that involves a different stage than the ones she has occupied since Oprah Winfrey dubbed her the ?most talented girl in the world.?
Since Oprah featured Pempengco, known simply as Charice, on her talk show in 2008, the pop singer?s profile has grown steadily. Although she is just 18, her striking, powerful voice has already shared stages with the likes of tenor Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion.
Now her single ?Pyramid,? which she recorded with singer Iyaz and was released in the United States in March from her self-titled debut album, has received US radio airplay, and a remixed version has soared to the top of the US Billboard dance charts.
From lyrics to law books
But the young singer, whose career was in part propelled by initial popularity on video sharing website YouTube, told Reuters she was not getting caught up in all the attention and has a different career path she eventually wants to pursue.
?I want to be a lawyer,? she said in an interview with Reuters Television.
?Being a famous singer or an international singer?that?s my dream, too, but my main goal is to be a real student and be able to graduate and be a lawyer and have my own business,? Charice added.
Although her schedule over this month has her flying throughout Asia on her first big tour in South Korea, the Philippines, Japan, Thailand and Malaysia, Charice said she was using her school books to come down from the rush of playing in concert.
?Some of my friends are giving me law books,? she said. ?I love reading those. It?s like my relaxation.?
The singer credits her upbringing growing up in San Pedro, Laguna, in the Philippines and singing in amateur singing contests as the daughter of a struggling single mother for her drive and ambition.
?I?m mature because of my past,? Charice said, admitting she could be a little bossy. ?At (my) age of 6 years, my mom was getting advice from me.?
She already has movie credits to her name, including a brief cameo in the US animated children?s movie ?Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel.?
And in late July, she will start working with the cast and producers of US television series ?Glee? in Los Angeles.
?I haven?t gotten the script yet but I think I?m going to play a foreign student,? she said. ?I?m really nervous. But I?m trying to be normal and act like myself on the set.?