NEW YORK — Move over Charice! Here comes up and coming Filipino American singing sensation star from Freehold, New Jersey – Nina Waga Mojares.
Eleven-year old Nina was selected by the United States Tennis Association (USTA) to sing “America the Beautiful” at the 2010 U.S. Open Tennis Championship at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens, New York after auditioning at the Radio City Hall in midtown Manhattan last month.
About 260 children aged 12-and-under from across the country responded to the U.S. Open’s casting call last month. They all sang “America the Beautiful” and were adjudged by Justin Chon of the Twilight Saga; Ashley Roberts, formerly of the Pussycat Dolls; and actor/singer Andrew Seeley who will be starring in a new television series this fall, Glory Daze.
Nina, will be performing on center court during the quarter finals on September 8. She is one of the 14 children selected to sing at this year’s U.S. Open.
“I’m honored and thrilled to have been selected to sing at the U.S. Open. It’s a dream come true,” proclaimed the talented Nina on receipt of her letter of congratulations and invitation from the USTA three weeks ago.
The U.S. Open is held annually over a two week period in late August and September at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. It is the highest attended annual sporting event in the world with over 700,000 fans on site and a worldwide television audience in over 185 countries. The US Open has been the fourth and final Grand Slam tennis tournament following the Australian Open, French Open, and Wimbledon.
Even at her young age, having been introduced by her mom Jeanette to karaoke, Nina has been performing at local community events and participating in local singing contests. In all her performances, Nina has delighted her audience and received encore requests at every event. Her singing style is likened to Alicia Keys and Charice Pempengco. She also has been put forward by her fans as the next Disney star following Taylor Swift, Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez.
Besides her singing talent, Nina also plays the piano/keyboard and sings in a rock band called “Over the Edge”. She has performed and appeared as a special guest for three-time Grammy nominee and Tony award-winning singer, Melba Moore of the “Lean On Me” and “You Stepped Into My Life” fame.
Her most recent performance was at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City where she auditioned with her back up dance crew “Legit” for the hit NBC television show, “America’s Got Talent”.
She has also appeared on NBC’s “Today Show”, and was chosen by the producers of the nationally syndicated “Maury” (Povich) TV show to become part of “Maury’s Most Talented Kids 2010″ episode.
With her numerous live performances, YouTube videos, and television appearances, Nina has developed a large fan base not only in the U.S. but also throughout the world.
Among her other accomplishments, Nina is a recipient of the Presidential Academic Excellence Award from President Barack Obama. This prestigious award is given to students that have ranked in the top 5% of their class and achieved an A average in their studies during the school year. Nina also received the 2010 Dr. Jose P. Rizal Circle of Excellence Award for Outstanding Youth in recognition of her service in many charity events in the Philippine-American community where she performed.
Nina is also a ballroom dancer. Under the direction of Spencer Nyemchek, she and her dance partner Gabriel Basalatan, have become skilled in the rumba, samba, jive, and cha-cha.