THIRD GENERAL ELECTION: Can Alyssa Garcia produce a new moment of magic?
Alyssa Garcia (Team NIV)
1st GE rank: 17th | 2nd GE rank: 28th
If an MNL48 fan heard or saw this word, either as an introduction for every event or in a social media post, only one name would pop out in his or her head and that would be Alyssa Garcia.
Known to the fanbase as the “4D Fairy”, Garcia quickly made her mark through an aura of radiating positivity and energetic, all-out style of performing. She is also considered as one of the best in terms of dancing inside the idol group.
Initially ranking 17th and getting the Undergirls center spot in the First General Election two years ago, a series of sudden departures of top-ranking members enabled her to be part of the senbatsu for MNL48’s debut single “Aitakatta Gustong Makita”. She then retained her senbatsu status for the second single “Pag-ibig Fortune Cookie” and also appeared in its coupling track “Palusot Ko’y Maybe," which she and her teammates in Team NIV performed.
Despite not being a senbatsu member in the third single “365 Araw ng Eroplanong Papel," her prior endeavors was enough to secure the 28th rank in last year’s Second General Election.
Period of flourishing
After the Second General Election, Garcia went on to be part of the Undergirls for the fourth single’s coupling song “Gingham Check” and performed in various mall shows and TV guestings. This allowed Garcia to show her high-energy style of performing in front of a mainstream audience which was admired and praised by the fanbase, especially on social media. She was involved in another Team NIV song in the form of the fifth single’s B-track “1! 2! 3! 4! Yoroshiku!” and is bound to be part of the senbatsu for the sixth single’s coupling song “10nen Zakura”.
Labeled by many fans as an “underrated” member of the group, Garcia continued her progression in performing and fan service despite having limited exposure by being more active in social media throughout the extended voting period. Roan Datu, one of the administrators of her fan club Alyssa's Fairies, pointed this out in an online interview with PAKSA MNL. “Parang every week, meron siyang dance cover or other stuff na sobrang nakakabusog sa puso as a fan. She also improved at dancing and singing as we can see sa contents niya," he added.
More than her energetic performances, Garcia has stepped up the variety in terms of the content she produces, with a wide array of dance and song covers ranging from MNL48, AKB48 up to Korean pop songs. This has enabled her to gather a diverse yet united base of fans. Furthermore, Garcia also makes it a point to always interact with her followers, with her “Question of the Night” challenge on Instagram being a prime example of it where she answers a random question and also encourages the fans to do so as well.
Datu attests to these improvements, adding that some label his kami-oshi as a “fully-packaged” idol since she has already made leaps in most facets of her talents and abilities. “Hindi man napapansin ng mga tao pero she's prepared sa maraming bagay like dance challenges, song covers and other stuff. Hindi madalas napapansin 'yon ng mga tao pero she's always doing her best to give good content for people with different tastes such as K-Pop fans, J-Pop fans, P-pop fans and other types of fans," he said.
Unlike other fan clubs, the primary Third General Election fund-raising project planned by Garcia’s fan club fell prey to the Covid-19 pandemic. A dance workshop was in the works and almost ready to go last March but it was shelved and ultimately cancelled as the community quarantine period was implemented in the Metro. However, this failure didn’t dampen the spirits of a fanbase willing to fight for the 4D Fairy’s MNL48 dream.
According to Datu, Garcia's family and some of her fans put up online shops selling items such as milk products, face masks and various essential items to help in raising election funds. Furthermore, a donation drive has been started and freebie items will be sent out after the General Election to those who donated and directly voted for her.
A determined quest
With Garcia being known as an “underrated” idol and the effects of the pandemic hitting hard, things have become a bit tricky for her current campaign. Nonetheless, carrying the Fairy back to the senbatsu still remains the primary goal for her loyal fans as it will bring more opportunities for her to show what she’s capable of. “I don't expect a high rank but we're hoping na makapasok siya sa senbatsu. That's our main goal for now," Datu said.
Datu thanked Garcia for continuing to provide inspiration despite the unsteady times. “Always do your best. Thank you for giving us happiness lalo na ngayong pandemic. A lot of us are suffering from sadness because of what's currently happening, pero just a smile from you can take those dark clouds away. Please don't get tired of giving us great content na napagkukunan namin ng energy. Always keep the faith. We'll do our best to save you," he said in a heartfelt message.
He also extended his gratitude to his fellow Alyssa kami-oshis. “Thank you for supporting her. We may not be as big as the other fanclubs but you give the love as big as the other fan clubs give to their oshis. Alam natin na sobrang worth it i-stan ni Alyssa (Garcia)," he added.
Alyssa Garcia will look to carry on her fight to the Third General Election as a much-improved idol with a fanbase ready to brave against all odds to help her get back to MNL48’s coveted limelight, and the results will have the final word if their united efforts will open up more opportunities in her magical idol journey.