Rita Daniela wants to champion body positivity

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Rita Daniela

Rita Daniela is by all means a normal-sized girl. Still, she used to get body-shamed by vicious people online for not fitting the mold of what they think a female celebrity should look like. It hurt at first, she admitted. But not anymore. As she became more mature, she learned how to embrace her  body’s imperfections.

“I have experienced being teased about my weight. But that’s not a hindrance to do the things you love, and show the world what you’re capable of as a person and as an artist,” Rita told the Inquirer at a recent press conference for the upcoming  concert of Jose Mari Chan, “Going Home to Christmas.”

After all, the 23-year-old singer-actress  pointed out, there’s no winning against bashers. “Whatever we do in life, people will always find something to say about it. So, just do your thing. Don’t adjust or change for the sake of pleasing your critics,” she stressed.

Rita, who refuses to have her body flaws edited or enhanced when doing photo shoots, said she won’t stop championing body positivity to help other girls embrace themselves and become more comfortable in their own skin.

“I’m happy because I have been getting a lot of messages from other women, saying that I inspire them,” said the GMA 7 talent, who got her start in the biz by winning the 2005 singing contest, “Pop Star Kids.”

Another dream of hers, Rita added, is working in an industry that doesn’t measure one’s worth by good looks alone.

“I hope that kind of mindset changes in the future. In other countries … in Hollywood, for instance, when you’re good, you’re good—you book the job,” she said.

Rita is currently enjoying what turned out to be her biggest break on television yet—playing the prostitute Aubrey and the love interest of Boyet (played by Ken Chan), a man with a mild intellectual disability, in the afternoon soap opera, “My Special Tatay.”

The tandem’s scenes and exchanges are fodder for internet memes, which have become a new indicator of sorts of how well a show is performing.

“Our scenes going viral and getting turned into memes make us happy. Being appreciated by viewers is a ‘privilege’ I didn’t have before. The people’s warm reception inspires us to work even harder,” she said.

Despite Aubrey being nasty and abrasive at the beginning, Rita observed that lots of viewers find themselves empathizing with the character.

To prepare for the role—which she auditioned for—Rita had to change her way of moving and speaking and take on new mannerisms. “Aubrey talks in a high-pitched voice. Talak ako nang talak dito. And my concern was I would run the risk of losing my voice, which is detrimental to me as a singer,” said Rita.

Despite her newfound success on television, she insisted that music is still her top priority. And the thought of sharing the stage with a legend like Chan on Dec. 2 at The Theatre at Solaire (call 8919999) is a dream come true.


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