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Toni Gonzaga Tells All: Why She Switched To YouTube

The singer-host-actress shared why she's been more visible on YouTube than on TV in the recent months.

In the last decade or so, celebrities have come and go–new artists discovered through various talent and reality shows, others retiring to pursue a more quiet and private life. But if there’s one personality that has stayed in showbiz, and continued to become more popular as the years went by, it would be Toni Gonzaga.

From hosting to acting to singing, Toni has done it all. And she has kept up with it even as she was making her own family with husband Direk Paul Soriano and first child, Seve.  However, if you’ve been watching TV in recent months, you might have noticed that Toni has been a little MIA. (Read: Here’s A Look Back on Bea Alonzo’s Most Iconic Kapamilya Roles)

Luckily, amid the pandemic (pretty much like most else), she decided to start her own YouTube channel! Her channel, which currently has 3.56 million subscribers, is a mix of lifestyle videos, personal vlogs, and interviews with different personalities. So why has Toni shifted to YouTube, and has not been on TV that much these days?

Starting Her Own YouTube Channel

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Toni with her sister, Actress-host Alex Gonzaga (Photo from Celestine Gonzaga-Soriano Instagram)

This was brought up during her one on one interview with YouTuber Wil Dasovich on his channel. Wil jokingly asked her why she left TV, and Toni said, “I didn’t walk away from television–I’m still on television.”

“I still do my mainstream, I call it my day job,” she said, “Pero itong YouTube–what really pushed me to open my own channel was my sister.”

Toni reveals that her sister Alex’s channel was actually supposed to be theirs! She explained that it was in 2017 when Alex was removed from a show on ABS-CBN, and she got depressed as she now didn’t have any projects, so the idea of opening a YouTube channel was brought up.

The younger Gonzaga then asked her Ate Tin (Toni’s real name is Celestine) to join her on the channel. According to Toni, Alex was trying to convince her about the idea by saying, “Pag ako lang walang manonood sa ‘kin, kailangan kita,” but she always turned it down. “Hindi ako pang-YouTube kasi feeling ko in real life, I’m a boring person,” the 37-year-old actress said. (Read: 3 Valuable Lessons From the Kitchen, According to Chef RV Manabat)

Changing Her Mind

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So far, she seems to be enjoying herself on YouTube–she’s been constantly interviewing personalities like Ces Drilon, Buboy Villar, and Jake Zyrus on her ‘Toni Talks’ segment about their life stories. (Photos from Celestine Gonzaga-Soriano YouTube)

But eventually, after years of convincing from her younger sister and their friends, Toni finally decided to open her own channel. “[I gave in] with the intention of I am not going to just show my life. I wanted every episode on the channel to have a message,” the actress explained.

And when ABSCBN–her home network–was closed down and wasn’t renewed its franchise, Toni was even more encouraged to put out content on YouTube. “When my network closed down, all my dreams and hopes died,” she shared. That’s when she remembered something Wil said in a vlog many years back that stuck to her, “If there’s no opportunity, create your own opportunity for yourself,” thus, her continuous content on her YouTube channel.

So far, she seems to be enjoying herself on YouTube. She’s been constantly interviewing personalities like Ces Drilon, Buboy Villar, and Jake Zyrus on her ‘Toni Talks’ segment about their life stories.

You may watch a snippet video of the interview here, and listen to the entire episode on Spotify here.

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