Student Canteen

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Student Canteen
Genre Variety show
Created by DZXL TV-4 (former network) and Program Philippines Inc.
Directed by Ramon Ramano
Starring Eddie Ilarde
Bobby Ledesma
and others
Country of origin Philippines
No. of episodes n/a
Location(s) Live Studio 1, RPN Studio, Broadcast City, Quezon City (1989-1990)
Running time 1 hour and 30 minutes (Weekdays)
2 hours (Saturdays)
(RPN stint)
Original network ABS-CBN (1958–1965)
GMA Network (1975–1986)
RPN (1989–1990)
Picture format 480i SDTV
Original release July 1958 – 1990

Student Canteen was the first noontime variety show on Philippine television. It ran on different networks: ABS-CBN from 1958 to 1965, GMA Network from 1975 to 1986 and RPN (renamed as New Vision 9) from 1989 to 1990.


Radio show[edit]

Student Canteen was originally a radio show on DZXL hosted by Eddie Ilarde, Bobby Ledesma, Bobby de Veyra and Leila Benitez[1] by the name of CBN Canteen.[2][3] The noontime show was aired on the canteen of the old Manila Chronicle Building in Aduana, Manila.[2] It was later renamed Student Canteen after it became a hit to students.[2]

The CBN years (1958-1965)[edit]

In July 1958, DZXL Channel 9, then owned by the Chronicle Broadcasting Network (a precursor of ABS-CBN) started broadcast operations. Student Canteen was brought to television that same year.[2]

The noontime show ended in 1965 when Eddie Ilarde went into politics. Prior to that however, the set of hosts for the show were replaced after main hosts Bobby Ledesma and Leila Benitez walked out of the program along with Eddie following a dispute. Pete Roa, then production manager of ABS-CBN, handpicked his wife Boots Anson-Roa, Ben Aniceto, Pepe Pimentel and Nelda Navarro as replacements.

Noontime show successors[edit]

Magandang Tanghali, a musical variety show hosted by Pancho Magalona, and Stop Look and Listen, a former noontime variety show hosted by Eddie Mesa took over Student Canteen's timeslot in 1965. After Eddie left for the US, Twelve O'Clock High, a show hosted by Ariel Ureta and Tina Revilla-Valencia), premiered and aired until 1972 when martial law was declared. The show moved to RBS (now GMA Network) as Ariel con Tina, a blocktimer by a company headed by Romy Jalosjos from 1972 to 1974. Lunch Break also gained ground on the same channel before Student Canteen was eventually revived.

The GMA Network years (1975-1986)[edit]

In 1975, the triumvirate of Menardo Jimenez, Felipe Gozon and Gilberto Duavit, Sr. took over RBS and changed its name to GMA Radio-Television Arts. Looking for a show that can serve as a gateway to daytime dominance, the new management conducted negotiations with Eddie Ilarde who readily agreed to revive Student Canteen under his production company Program Philippines Inc.[4]

In January 1975, Student Canteen was revived, with Helen Vela and Coney Reyes[5] joining original hosts Pepe Pimentel, Bobby Ledesma and Eddie Ilarde.[4] Ramon Ramano was the original director of the show. Ariston "Aris" Bautista was the floor director, and later the show's director.

The show had a segment called "Search for the Student Canteener" which was a singing contest. This segment attracted a lot of high quality constestants and many of former "Canteeners", including Marco Sison, became successful professional singers. Many other singing contest segments within the show produced some of the country's top singers. Bert Nievera, for example, was the champion of the segment called, "Search for Johnny Mathis of the Philippines." The show also had a segment called "IQ 7" which was actually a quiz contest and which produced the country's top quiz champions like Bong Barrameda, Ramon Lorenzo, Victor Saymo, Antonio Manaloto, Gil Manimbo, Eduardo Alvaran, Virgilio Acasio, Nazzir Abbas, Roberto Villareal, Emilio Apostol, Nehemias Miguel, Nilo Francisco, Sonny Pascual, Romeo Miat, Leoncio Pelayo, David Oriel, Leon Bongulto, Pete Dadula, Boni Magtibay, and many others who have gone on to excel in their respective chosen fields of endeavor. A spin-off of the quiz segment "IQ 7" called "Battle of Campus Brains" produced the first and only female quiz champion in the history of GMA 7 quizzes, Essem Zisenia Solomon, who defeated the then reigning champion Pete Dadula and several other quiz veterans.

Student Canteen was the only noontime show that existed in the 1970s before the birth of Eat Bulaga!, whose main hosts were originally taken out from the former, on July 30, 1979. Eat Bulaga! was in danger of cancellation until the segment "Mr. Macho" was launched in 1980, making it the top-rating noontime show.[6] Student Canteen's ratings, however, started to decline after years of popularity. Coney Reyes, one of the show's main hosts, left this show after they took in Chiqui Hollman from Eat Bulaga!. Other fresh faces were soon seen on Student Canteen, including Jackie Lou Blanco, Chat Silayan, Dyords Javier and Francis Magalona. Former child star Julie Vega was supposed to be included in the show however, the plan was shelved following her illness and subsequent death in 1985.

The show's stint on GMA ended in 1986 following the People Power Revolution. It was later replaced by Lunch Date.

The RPN years (1989-1990)[edit]

Student Canteen went back on air on February 20, 1989 with a new home, RPN (renamed as New Vision 9) replacing "Eat Bulaga!" which was moved to ABS-CBN due to its sequestration. The show was also retitled Student Canteen (The Third Generation) because it was the pioneer noontime show that started it all. Original hosts Eddie Ilarde and Bobby Ledesma were joined by Malu Maglutac, Jean Garcia, Cherry Pie Picache and Atoy Co as co-hosts. Ramon Lorenzo served as the Quiz Master for the "IQ 7" segment.

The show ended in 1990 due to disagreements between the RPN management and the hosts. A revival was in the works again the following year, but it was shelved after main host Bobby Ledesma died in 1993.

Alas Dose sa Trese[edit]

On July 24, 1999, former Student Canteen main host Eddie Ilarde resurfaced in the noontime scene as host of the IBC noontime show Alas Dose sa Trese. He was joined by the mother-daughter tandem of Boots Anson-Roa (a former host of the original Student Canteen), Chiqui Roa-Puno (newscaster of PTV and one of the top female sportscasters at that time), Ernani "Jong" Cuenco, Pia Pilapil and actor-musician Paco Arespacochaga in the show. Some elements of Student Canteen were seen in the show, along with former contestants from "Student Canteen"'s singing portions who gamely sang and entertained audiences via the segment "Student Canteen Corner". The show ended in November 3, 2000.


Main hosts[edit]


  • The Tiongco Brothers
  • Marco Sison
  • Sharon L. - The Dancer


See also[edit]


External links[edit]