This One's For You Review - a solo concert produced by Li'l Boo Music Studio
Photography by Rene Sevilla
A Night of Broadway and Soulful Music at Kalayaan Centre with Leander Mendoza
By: Peachy Forbes Click here to see Rene Sevilla's photos of the concert
It was a soulful night. It was the best of nights.
August 14th at the Kalayaan Centre will be deeply remembered in the memory of many friends and family members of Leander Mendoza.
Kalayaan Centre dazzled guests with the versatile performance of Leander Mendoza with guest singer Josie De Leon. Kalayaan Centre rolled the red carpet for Leander’s concert with white linen covered tables and chairs, a grand stage, bright glebe of lights, hearty music and sound effects typical of a Broadway show. Trays of appetizers and hors’ douvre, flowing wine filled the ballroom to start the night.
As an introduction, Leander sang “This is the Moment” followed by “Tonight” and as a special gift to his parents, Leander delivered an exceptional wedding anniversary song “The Way We Were”, a song that brought memories of love and courtship days to his very surprised parents, Pete and Lucy Mendoza. This was his way of honouring his parents on this day, their 40th wedding anniversary. Parents, couples and families in the audience were filled with love and tears as memories of childhood and family life were presented in a video presentation. Leander sang favourites of young and old alike from “Granada, Solo Mio” to Tom Jones famous “It’s not unusual to be loved by anyone”.
With a special song for his mother and all the mothers in the audience, Leander brought the house down when he sang “Aking Inay” and from that point on the audience was mesmerized by the rest of the evening’s song list which brought to stage Josie De Leon who together sang “Music of the Night” and “All I ask of You” while donned in outfits that replicated the actual Phantom of the Opera. Then Tom Jones came alive with the song “It’s not unusual to be loved by Anyone” and with that bouncy tune, the audience started to dance and sway to the music.
Josie De Leon followed with “Dream Girl” and “I Am Telling You”, rendition equally charming the audience with her tantalizing voice.
The gleeful crowd singing and dancing was overwhelming. The fundraising was a real success. Guests were inspired and entertained and, of course spirited with both the wine and song.
The concert was a manifestation of the saying “music is the mirror of the soul.” There was nobility and expressions of the heart in sharing great talent of the singers and the volunteers of Kalayaan Centre volunteers. Congratulations to Leander, Josie, Mama Ching, for such an inspiring event.
If you miss this show, come for second performance. You have to ask for it.
from: Filipiniana Philippine & Community News - August 2010
Miss Saigon Reviews
Photography by Paul Roy
Leander Mendoza's powerhouse turn as "The Engineer" in City Centre Musical Productions' current and ambitiously-mounted run of "Miss Saigon" at Mississauga's Meadowvale Theatre is a showstopper of legendary proportions. If you think you've seen "Saigon" but haven't seen his "take no prisoners" performance, then you're missing out in ways you can't begin to imagine. - Bruce Dickson, www.broadwayworld.com
The scene-stealer is Leander Mendoza as The Engineer, who brings the lovers together and later tries to use their illegitimate child as his ticket to America. Mendoza has the unenviable task of making this sleazy guy likable and he succeeds without sacrificing any of the character’s underlying corruption. - Mark Andrew Lawrence, Mississauga News
Miss Saigon opens at a brothel that the Engineer, played by the outstanding Leander Mendoza, owns and runs. - Meghan Barron, Ontario Arts Review
The cast seem especially dedicated to making these stories come alive with Carole Filion offering a beautifully nuanced study of Mother. Her Act Two solo “Back to before” and her duet with Leander Mendoza “Our Children” were emotional high points. - Mark Andrew Lawrence, www.broadwayworld.com
Brampton opera sounds like Mississauga
Man of La Mancha Review
Leander Mendoza as The Padre - there were moments of really subtle humour in I'm Only Thinking Of Him. A wonderful atmosphere created in The Psalm in the final scenes. - www.clarksonmusictheatre.com
Ilang Tulog Pa Ba Concert
Leander led the group in “Mary Did You Know?” which brought the four back together on stage in an energetic blend of notes that gave way to chill on the spine and goose bumps.
As for Leander… well, what can I say? He was my hero for the night. Leander’s ‘Mary Did You Know’ was my favourite goosebump inducing performance during the concert. Hello. His alone were 2 of my 4 standing ovations. - Weena Marasigan, www.iPinoy.ca