kiana va­len­ciano

Scout - - CONTENTS - In­ter­view by CAI MAROKET Pho­tog­ra­phy by CENON NORIAL III

Kiana Va­len­ciano on seek­ing in­de­pen­dence abroad and fig­ur­ing her mu­sic ca­reer out all on her own

TALL AND PRETTY with a voice like a Dis­ney princess, Kiana Va­len­ciano has the ba­sic at­tributes that can eas­ily pro­pel her to­wards star­dom. It doesn’t hurt that she’s got a fa­mous last name ei­ther, syn­ony­mous with tal­ent and re­spect in the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try.

Kiana is not the type to ride on the coat­tails of other peo­ple’s hard work, though.

It’s only been about a month since she stepped foot in the mother­land, back from a two-and-a-half-month stint in Lon­don study­ing fash­ion-re­lated cour­ses at the es­teemed Cen­tral aint artins. he af nity for fash­ion isn’t much of a sur­prise. Just one look at her beau­ti­fully cu­rated blog will eas­ily show her nat­u­ral eye for style. She also hasn’t for­got­ten her roots in mu­sic, hit­ting the record­ing stu­dio as soon as she got home, with her mind fully fo­cused on kick­ing off the mu­sic ca­reer she’s been metic­u­lously work­ing on the past few years. For some­one who has fame and suc­cess wait­ing to be served to her on a sil­ver plat­ter, she’s pretty hard pressed on gur­ing things out on her own, choos­ing to ig­nore the easy path that comes with her priv­i­lege.

She knows what she wants, and she’s got a care­fully laid out bat­tle plan at the ready. This girl knows what she’s do­ing.

Have you al­ways wanted to study abroad? I can’t imag­ine it was an easy de­ci­sion.

It’s been a long time com­ing. When I was 17, it was really my dream to study abroad af­ter grad­u­at­ing from high school. But my par­ents were un­com­fort­able be­cause, you know, I’m their baby girl. But they al­ways knew that it was go­ing to hap­pen so this year I really pushed for it. It was ac­tu­ally two years in the works be­cause I really wanted to go last year, but my brother got mar­ried so I couldn’t. And be­fore that, my other brother also got mar­ried. So it was just a lot of stuff that was pre­vent­ing me from go­ing. Fi­nally, we de­cided that this year, dur­ing the sum­mer, I’d go and take my time there.

Were you alone the en­tire time?

The rst month and a half I was alone. y best friend fol­lowed later on but it was just us.

“I’m really picky. I’ve worked with peo­ple be­fore and I was just like ‘ Sorry, it’s really not me. I can’t do it.’ Which is why I guess [ my mu­sic is] tak­ing so long, so this time I’m really just... It’s kind of like my baby. I won’t release it un­less I feel it.”

What was it like? Was it vastly dif­fer­ent from your life here?

It was pretty cool. I really en­joyed it be­cause ev­ery­thing re­volved around my own time, my own body clock. So I worked at my own pace, did my chores at my own pace. There was no­body really telling me what I could and couldn’t do. It was nice be­ing in­de­pen­dent and get­ting to ex­plore the city on my own. I was do­ing my own laun­dry. Iron­ing. ( laughs) I was do­ing all that and it was so funny be­cause ev­ery­one from here was making fun of me. No­body’s used to that side of me. Here, I could just eas­ily ask peo­ple to do my chores for me.

You took up a few fash­ion cour­ses at Cen­tral Saint Martins. Are you in the process of plan­ning a cloth­ing line?

Yeah, but I don’t think it’s gonna hap­pen soon. Maybe end of next year or some­thing like that. Fash­ion is really broad. You have to keep go­ing and your in­spi­ra­tion has to keep com­ing, and I think right now it wouldn’t suit my life­style in the sense that I’d just have to block peo­ple out. Right now, I’m mostly just gonna fo­cus on my mu­sic be­cause I think that it’s just some­thing I do ev­ery day. I sing ev­ery day so I might as well work on that and, on the side, have my fash­ion thing go­ing. I’ve been plan­ning to have a lit­tle side-busi­ness of hav­ing made-to-or­der clothes for my friends but in terms of launch­ing a line, that re­quires so much time and in terms of what I’ve learned through­out my stay in Lon­don and my stud­ies here, fash­ion is really time-con­sum­ing.

Yeah. And fash­ion de­sign­ing isn’t just sketch­ing. You also have to cre­ate pat­terns and know your tex­tiles.

Yeah, and I really want to be the type of de­signer that’s hands on. I’m look­ing into study­ing some more. I also want to study ac­ces­sories, shoes, bags, stuff like that.

So would you say that mu­sic will al­ways come first and fash­ion is some­thing like a pass­ing in­ter­est?

Mu­sic is still my thing but I’ve al­ways been into fash­ion. When I was in high school, my friends used to make fun of me be­cause I’ll al­ways be sketch­ing in the side. And then I wanted to go study in Par­sons af­ter high school but, like what I said, it was a lit­tle hard for my par­ents to let me go at that time be­cause they thought of me as a baby. And I’m glad I didn’t be­cause I got to make a lot of friends here and build the re­la­tion­ships I have here. And I wouldn’t have sur­vived then. I was in Lon­don for two months and I had a hard time, so at 17 it would’ve been much harder.

But what you’re really fo­cus­ing on at the mo­ment is mu­sic, right?

My thing right now with mu­sic is I don’t want to be too main­stream. Be­cause, really, my sound isn’t. The type of mu­sic I lis­ten to and the per­form­ers I like aren’t really huge right now. Not that I’m hip­ster or any­thing. ( laughs) Right now, I’m work­ing on a few things, col­lab­o­rat­ing with dif­fer­ent artists and hope­fully by De­cem­ber we’ll have a track out. It doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily have to be on the ra­dio, you know? Maybe it’ll be on Sound­cloud but, yeah. That’s the kind of ap­proach I’m go­ing for.

I bet you’ve been per­form­ing since for­ever.

I think I was si when I had my rst record­ing but I think I was seven or eight when I rst sang in Araneta. That was nerve-wrack­ing but it was pretty fun. But it’s been a while [since the last time I was on stage] be­cause I haven’t been here. But be­fore I left for Lon­don, I did a gig. I usu­ally per­form with my dad. The only time when I really let loose is when I’m with my friends. Like, when we’re in La Union and they have that hos­tel there, Flot­sam & Jet­sam? Some­times my friends from there, they’re all mu­si­cians, will just bring out their gui­tars and jam. That’s my scene. ( laughs)

You have an awesome, well-cu­rated blog. It’s pretty heavy on the fash­ion at the mo­ment. Do you have plans of turn­ing it into a full-on life­style blog?

The mu­sic side [for my blog] is cur­rently in the works. We’re plan­ning to­tu­ally, no. I wanna keep that a sur­prise. ( laughs) I mean, I al­ready posted a bit of a sneak peek on my In­sta­gram of me singing, so that’s com­ing soon on the blog. And then I also have my travel videos. I’m cur­rently work­ing on my video from Lon­don. I make them my­self, so that’s why they’re al­ways late, and peo­ple make fun of me be­cause when we’re out of town, I’m all like, “Video, guys! Guys!” ( laughs)

What’s next really is the sin­gle. I’m really picky. I’ve worked with peo­ple be­fore and I was just like, “Sorry, it’s really not me. I can’t do it.” Which is why I guess it’s tak­ing so long, so this time I’m really just... It’s kind of like my baby. I won’t release it un­less I feel it. So that’s what’s next. The sin­gle. And we’re build­ing up the blog. It’s really like an on­line jour­nal. It’s not just the fash­ion and the mu­sic. It’s me shar­ing per­sonal sto­ries and stuff.

Makeup by HANNAH PECHON for SHU UE­MURA Hair by OGIE RAYEL f0r KIEHL’S Shot at PSID STU­DIO 24 www.psid­stu­

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