Gender: Female
Age: 25
Born: May 10th, 1992
Character: Sunshine Corazon
Occupation: Actor, Singer
Years Active: 2005-Present

Charmaine Clarice Relucio Pempengco, commonly mononymously known as Charice and more recently the self-identified name of Jake Zyrus, born May 10, 1992, is a 25-year-old Filipino actor and singer who is best known for portraying Sunshine Corazon on the hit TV show Glee.

Personal Life

Pempengco was born in San Pedro, Laguna, Philippines. Raised by a single mother, she helped support the family by joining many amateur singing contests (about 80+ she said in an interview). When she was three years old, she witnessed her abusive father point a gun at her mom during an episode of domestic violence. Along with her mother and younger brother Carl, they left their father in search of a better life.

On November 1, 2011, her father, Ricky Pempengco was found murdered after a drunken street fight in San Pedro, Laguna, Philippines. Her father was stabbed to death twice in the chest. He was 40 years old. Charice, who was supposed to have a concert in Singapore, cancelled the concert to attend the funeral.

On June 2, 2013, Charice revealed herself as a lesbian in an interview with Boy Abunda in The Buzz. She also mentioned that she has past relationships with other girls in the showbiz industry (ten of them, five of which were serious). Charice is currently in a relationship with Alyssa Quijano, her formal singing rival. 

In 2014, Pempengco revealed in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, that "basically, my soul is male", even though he wouldn't physically become a man through gender transition. In 2017, he made his first tweet under his chosen name, Jake Zyrus, and received lots of support from fans on twitter.



Charice started as a finalist at a local singing competition on Philippine television. She only managed to achieve third place and out of luck didn't make it big in the Philippine music industry. At age 15, Charice was invited by the producers of a Korean show called Star King. Uploaded on YouTube by an avid fan, her amazing performance on Star King went "viral" and attracted millions of views in a short time.

Media attention

TV presenter Ellen DeGeneres discovered Charice's video in YouTube, who then invited her to guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show at the end of 2007. Months later, Oprah Winfrey invited Charice to guest on her own talk show as well.

Charice's fame grew internationally as she went on tour and played cities such as London and Rome. She also performed at the Macy's NBC Thanksgiving Day Parade alongside David Archuleta, and with Celine Dion at one of her concerts. Charice has also received recognition from Josh Groban, David Spade and Jay Leno. She has performed with popular icons such as Michael Buble, Taylor Swift, and Andrea Bocelli, and later made a cameo appearance in her first feature film, Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel, which was released in North America on December 23, 2009.

After her exposure in Oprah, well-known & Multiple Grammy Award winning composer David Foster took the liberty to become Charice's coach. This also led to Charice having her very first international album Pyramid, where her single of the same name featured singer Iyaz. She was later then tagged as "The Internet Phenom from The Philippines." Charice comes from a Christian family, though for a long time she hadn't been baptized; when she decided to officially become a Christian and be baptized at church, Oprah Winfrey and David Foster signed up as her godparents. On November 30, she appeared on NBC's Christmas in Rockefeller Center and performed "Grown-up Christmas List" and "Jingle Bell Rock" with producer and mentor David Foster.

Charice now works on multiple projects, the latest includes Glee and Here Comes the Boom along with Salma Hayek and Kevin James which is due on 2012. She recently worked with Kara DioGuardi, Nick Jonas and Bruno Mars for her sophomore album due on 2011. She also sings New World, the theme song for the English version of the game Final Fantasy XIII-2[1]

Charice is the very first Asian artist to ever reach an 8th spot at the Billboard 200 of the album charts with her album Pyramid.


Main article: Sunshine Corazon

Her character was introduced along with Chord Overstreet in Auditions. On an interview with Ryan Murphy, he hinted about Sunshine Corazon's future Glee role: "She's coming back in big way. We're finishing the year with her. She's coming back for 5 episodes at the end of the year. She's gonna be great ! Lots of big, big ballads for Charice." [1]


Year Title Role Notes
2010 Glee Sunshine Corazon ("Audition", "A Night of Neglect", "New York")
May Bukas Pa Choir ("Santino Surprises Everyone")
2012 Here Comes the Boom Malia


Oprah Winfrey: She is the most talented girl in the world.

—Oprah Winfrey (to Charice), The Oprah Winfrey Show

David Foster: I can't think of a person on the planet right now that can deliver these songs better than you.

—David Foster (to Charice)

Ryan Murphy: When that girl opens her mouth, angels fly out...I was just so taken by Charice. Thats one of the things where somebody walks in and you're just so touched that you say, 'I have to write something for you'. So that's how it happened.

Ryan Murphy (to Charice)

Ellen DeGeneres: You are gonna be blown can just smell the star on her, you can just smell it.

—Ellen Degeneres (to Charice), The Ellen DeGeneres Show


  • She likes to play basketball and is quite good at shooting goals.
  • Charice can do a very convincing impression of Gru's Minions from the Despicable Me franchise.
  • Charice has performed with various famous Asian singers, such as Lena Park, K.Will, and Kyuhyun of SuperJunior.


  • Charice on Ellen DeGeneres Show for her very first television appearance and performance in the US.
  • Charice and Oprah Winfrey.
  • Charice performed opposite Celine Dion.
  • Charice performing alongside Andrea Bocelli.
  • Charice performed alongside Patti LaBelle.
  • Charice performed alongside Taylor Swift.
  • Charice had a single, "Pyramid" featuring Iyaz.
  • Charice performed Listen in the Academy Awards, other performances included Michael Buble (right). Paris Hilton also pictured (left)
  • Charice and her musical mentor, David Foster
  • Charice performed with Josh Groban in an event in Connecticut.
  • Charice with Harry Shum Jr.
  • Charice & Justin Bieber in Oprah
  • Charice along with Mariah Carey
  • Charice performing "Earth Song" with Ne-yo
  • Charice w/ Kylie Minogue, Jessica Simpson & Josh
  • Charice w/ Barack Obama's sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng
  • Charice with Tom HanksGo to charice, tom hanks, celebrity, glee,
  • Charice & David Archuleta
  • Charice, Perez Hilton & Travis Gaerland
  • Nick Jonas working with Charice
  • Charice & Kara DioGuardi


Charice To GLEE and Beyond10:20

Charice To GLEE and Beyond

Charice to GLEE & Beyond

Charice Interview and talk about what prant she want to do to Glee cast04:09

Charice Interview and talk about what prant she want to do to Glee cast


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