“Gusto ko palitan si Jessica Soho,” stated by Paeancyd Pearl Sabangan, also known as Yap Sabangan, a graduate of Saint Louis University, expressed how she dreamed of becoming like Jessica Soho and replacing. However, why did her path lead her to become a passionate and fearless Executive Producer working behind the scene?
Since she was still in college, she loved making news and doing a broadcast,”gusto ko talaga mag news, pagdating sa news magaling kumuha at mag produce ang GMA” she said which drove her applying for a job in GMA Network. “Pangarap ko yung GMA dahil gusto ang news, gusto kong maging writer and reporter,” she added, but she left her dream job and network and changed her track to ABS CBN, which she didn’t expect to what this new path of her prepared for her.
Ms. Yap Sabangan is currently working with DepEd Tv. Even though she didn’t dream of becoming an Executive producer, but she still pursued this career path because she found a family and friend through her colleagues. Aside from replacing Jessica Soho, she also dreamed of being mentored by Stevan Spielberg and became a Director wanting to give Johnny Depp an Oscar Award.
Moving on, she shared what it means to be an Executive Producer. “Pag nasa ibang bansa ka, mataas ang tingin nila sa EP. Ikaw yung boss, nag fi-finance at ikaw ang lahat pag EP sa ibang bansa” she said as she explained what other people think of an Executive Producer. She said that being an Executive Producer indeed, she is involved in everything and must establish good relationships with her director and creatives. She mentioned that if anything happens in production, it is all under her responsibility. She believes that being an EP doesn’t mean that you will stop working; for her being an EP is like becoming the bridge, the one who will balance everything from the producers to directors and creatives to artists. To be an Executive Producer is like the handler of everything.
Moreover, she also mentioned the essential qualities of being an Executive Producer. She stated that it takes a lot of courage and must be brave, brave in the sense of standing on your decisions and protecting your team, “dapat palaban ka pag di ka palaban kakainin ka ng buhay, kawawa ka,” she noted. However, working in production is not exempted from having conflicts and challenges. She said that the most challenging conflicts are having problems with VTR and live productions. She shared some of her experiences solving and being in the middle of a conflict even though she suffered a lot and getting in trouble; conflicts are unpredictable. She explained that conflicts could be solved even though it is challenging, but they just laughed at it. She mentioned that they called it “bloopers” the conflicts and problems they encountered in some productions.
Knowingly that everyone has been affected by the pandemic, a question was raised to Ms. Sabangan, “How do you cope up with the situation right now?” She stated that it is her first time producing live using a video communication app. Challenges in working in the middle of a pandemic keep arising; she said that they struggle a lot especially working at home, “naghahalo yung personal at work because of the pandemic,” she said. She mentioned the challenges like having a problem with internet connection during virtual meetings but that despite the challenges, she and her team manage to adapt because they’re ready. After knowing the announcement of the lookdown, she said, “Zoom,” a video communication app, had been introduced to them and started preparing for the situation in case of a lockdown. “Dito makikita yung kapasidad mo bilang tao, ano yung diskarte mo, i-ready mo yung sarili mo sa mga what if,” she said as she pointed out that because of the “what if’s” they become ready. She also said that working in a pandemic is challenging, yet she still enjoys it because of the new experience and even more developing the creativity and skills
Speaking of personal and work, she explained that she couldn’t connect her work to her personal life because work is not her life; she said, “pag work is my life paano pag wala ka ng work edi patay kana. “ She realized that she couldn’t say that her work is her life because it must be separated, it has boundaries, “pag personal life wag mo dadalhin sa worksame with sa work wag mo dadalhin sa personal life,” she said. She added that having time for yourself is the balance.
Before ending the interview, we asked her about her tips and advice for incoming Communication graduates and those who want to pursue careers in the media or news industry. “Dapat matibay ka dahil monster ang mga tao sa media dahil kung hindi kakainin ka ng buhay” . Fear has no place working in the media industry; you must be brave enough to find yourself being happy despite your struggles. Ms. Yap Sabangan advised communication students that do not fear working in the media industry. You must think carefully about what you want. She stated that ”di lahat may calling kaya dapat alam nyo gusto nyo.” Furthermore, she also said that don’t be afraid to take risks and never stop developing and learning to gain courage and experiences. Ms. Yap Sabangan ended by leaving us a question, “Alamin nyo kung saan nangagaling at kinukuha ang colored bars”