We catch up with Atasha Muhlach two days after her college graduation to talk about having famous family members, why education was her priority, and how she sees her career in the future
This is an excerpt from the MEGA September 2023 issue.
Two days before we had met with Atasha for our photo shoot, she was in London, attending her college graduation—in a burgundy A.L.C. dress that went viral in the Philippines. Fast forward to our interview: Her eyes are a bit watery, albeit they hold the excitement of a child with a new toy. She tells us how, a few minutes ago, tears just fell from her eyes, which were shutting themselves without her permission.
“I’m not sad or in pain; I’m just really jet-lagged,” she laughs as her eyes widen. Her energy and her professionalism belie her revelation. But that’s just her—when she does something, she wants it done right. That’s why she’s working very hard on her first single.
When she was younger, she took singing lessons, but that had to stop to make way for school and sports—she was once a competitive swimmer, by the way. “I was just like a university student singing in the kitchen with my sandok, or in the shower, or with my hairbrush,” she says about her music’s journey. “I’d send videos to my parents, thinking, ‘Hey, this is not too bad.’”
She can’t talk much about her single for now, but she says it can definitely make people happy. It makes her happy: “When I first heard it, I said, ‘Yeah, this is it—the song, the beat and all, this is something I really want.’” While singing is taking the front row for now, the young artist is open to exploring other artistic endeavors in the near future, including acting and hosting.
Another thing that she’s doing right is her style. When she posted a photo of her walking the streets of London in her graduation dress, people began dubbing her the next It girl. She makes a goofy face at the mention of that.
“I like to play around with my style,” she says. “Some days, I like to dress up like a girly girl; on some days, I just want to dress down in pants and a sweater, or shorts and an oversized t-shirt— whatever I feel confident and good in.”
Sometimes, she would still get hand-me-downs from her parents—which is a great thing, in her case. “My goodness, I’ve always wanted to borrow my mom’s heels, but we’re not the same shoe size,” she feigns a cry. “It’s okay. She gives me her pants, the ones that she used to wear when she was younger.” Pants are her go-to pieces of clothing—add a pair of sunglasses (like the Louis Vuitton Moon Metal Cat Eye Sunglasses she wore at our shoot), and she’s ready for anything. “Sunglasses are some of those pieces that you can bring around with you,” she says. “And there are some days when you’re not really feeling yourself, so you just whip it on. It’s a comfort blanket, and you feel like you’re in your own world.”
That “own world” may soon be a little bit harder to come by. With her trajectory, Atasha could have that world at her feet. She’s made for that: It’s in her blood.
“I’m still getting used to things, but this is something that I really want to do,” she says as she’s about to leave. The watery eyes are coming back so we have to wrap up, but her energy remains intact. “It’s just day one of the journey.”
Photography DOOKIE DUCAY
Creative Direction NICOLE ALMERO assisted by GJ FAJILAN
Fashion Direction KAT CRUZ-VILLANUEVA and RYUJI SHIOMITSU
Beauty Direction AGOO AZCUNA-BENGZON, assisted by MIA CASTRO
Makeup ROBBIE PIÑERA
Hair ANTON PAPA
Production Design ADSET
Styling Assistant BITHIA REYES
Shoot Coordination LAURD SALEN and SAMANTHA ESTANIEL
Video Production REGINA ACERON
Videography EXCEL PANLAQUE of KLIQ INC.
Sittings Editors PEEWEE REYES-ISIDRO and BAM ABELLON
Shot on location RED APPLE MANILA