60s heartthrob Roger Calvin holds birthday in Farmers Market

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roger Calvin: Then and now

By Boy Villasanta 

Roger Calvin, father of KTLA primetime newscaster and sixth-time Emmy awardee Cher Calvin, is in town not only to take a breather but to celebrate his nth birthday.

After a series of exclusive parties with the likes of veterans Liberty Ilagan, Pepito Rodriguez, Liza Lorena, Caridad Sanchez, Ronaldo Valdez, Amalia Fuentes, Gloria Sevilla, Marissa Delgado, Divina Valencia, Imelda Ilanan, Nova Villa among other, it’s Roger’s turn to host a natal day party. 

And what a way of preparing and hosting a shindig for his friends from showbiz and outside!

As early as 4 a.m. on a stormy Thursday, Roger, along with his bosom buddy Angel Francis Marcelo, was already marketing sea foods to be assigned in a particular paluto (caused to cook) store located in a food hub called Dampa inside Farmers Market in Cubao.

“It’s very interesting and unique. This is my first time to do this,” said Roger.

Calvin and Marcelo were also the ones who decorated balloons on a long table in a sea of dining tables inside Dampa. “The balloons were donated by fans of Roger,” Francis said jokingly.   

“This is my first time to celebrate my birthday in the Philippines. The last time was when I was twenty one years old and very active in showbiz,” recalled the handsome inactive actor.

“After fifty years, I’m back and celebrating my birthday with friends,” he exclaimed.

Before his natal day, Calvin was already contemplating on a comeback trail in film and television.

“I am open to all kinds of roles, even father roles,” he remarked with a smile.

His contemporaries Ronaldo Valdez and Dante Rivero are still very much sought after in the entertainment business playing mature and insightful roles.

Roger said that he would consider indie film acting. “Even gay roles would be fine. But they would depend on what kind of character,” he confided in an earlier interview. 

In the mid-60s, everyone, especially the Filipino girls, went gaga over Roger, the penultimate matinee idol who was a toast of the town when he did a string of teenyboppers for Lea Productions.

He did many starring roles, one of them “Kwatang” with sex siren of the era, Divina Valencia whom Roger regards as a very best friend. As a matter of fact, Divina was one of the special guests during Roger’s birthday. He also did a film with Blanca Gomez titled “Magic Makinilya” when the former Stars ’66 actress left Sampaguita Pictures. Roger did a musical with Helen Gamboa as well. 

But after Martial Law was declared, Calvin migrated to the United States and found a new life in Uncle Sam’s land.

He got married to a medical doctor from Bulacan and Nueva Ecija and they were gifted with only one but wonderful child, Cher Calvin, one of the main hostesses of the defunct “F” with Angel Aquino, Daphne Oseña and Amanda Griffin in ABS-CBN.

Cher is now a decorated broadcast personality in the American television.

In the 80s, Roger went on a short vacation in the Philippines and he was offered a role in the Christopher de Leon-Amalia Fuentes starrer, “Si Raquel at si Rafael.”  

Other showbiz personalities who made it during Roger’s gig were movie writers Pilar Mateo, Ricky Calderon, Dave Rojo, Art Tapalla, Danny Vibas, filmmaker Arman Reyes and this writer. 

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