Artist Feature

Successful pilot-influencer recalls giving up showbiz, uses platform to inspire

Meet the successful influencer-pilot Mann Ed Demalata as he talks about using his platform for good. He also gives advice to flight crew members who lost jobs this pandemic.

Mann Ed Demalata may have joined numerous competitions on television and has tried appearing in programs and series but he has come to know himself more as he pursued his passion. Now, he is living the best time of his life not just as a pilot but also as influencer.

He recalled having gone through several rejections in life but all of those have made him a stronger person. “Marami akong sinalihan nung teenager ako,” shared Mann Ed. “When I was studying no’n, I was also modeling, doing fashion shows and small-time TVCs. Those were the days. I still remember those memories dahil yon ang nagbibigay sa akin ng inspirasyon to do better.”

One of the most remarkable moments in his career was when he joined the second season of GMA Network’s reality-based artista search, StarStruck, back in 2005. The overall experienced opened his eyes and discovered who he truly was.

After joining StarStruck, he was able to appear in some GMA shows like the drama anthology Magpakailanman, the top-rated primetime fantasy series Mulawin, and the horror-comedy anthology Kakabakaboo. He was managed then by popular GMA writer, Dinno Erece. 

“Grabe. Gano’n pala ang feeling na mag-audition sa isang malaking TV competition. All contestants were different. I remember wearing my ‘pangmalakasang’ clothes kasi siyempre I wanted na mapansin. But experiences naman doing TV shows were fun and siyempre nakatulong sa akin. Hanggang sa na-realize ko, it wasn’t for me talaga.”

Though he did not become a full-blown artist, he took a turn as an influencer on Instagram and garnered a huge following of almost 230,000. He learned to use the platform to share stories of being flight crew members and how it is like for them being on air. He makes it a point to be responsible in doing his stuff in IG.

“I post a lot of stories and photos on Instagram, featuring and showcasing my flying experiences as a pilot. Then last year, so honored, maraming sikat na Instagram accounts na nag-feature sa akin because of my content—which is pilot stuff nga. 

“I guess people are interested din na malaman, ano ba talaga ang buhay naming mga piloto na nasa himpapawid. I know, that time, kaya ako nag-post ng gano’n, para i-share ang journey ng isang pilot.

“Our job is not an easy job. Some of flying crew members lost their jobs dahil sa pandemic, dahil walang flights.”

That started his journey as an influencer-pilot who uses his platform to share pilot stories and show them to the world in his own lens.

The 33-year-old influencer-pilot added, “I always think before I post—hindi lang dapat ang masasarap na pagkain o mamahaling suot. It’s really your message. I also use my platform to encourage the youth to be up to date to relevant social issues like to register and vote for the upcoming elections next year.

Mann Ed completed his flying hours at Masters Flying School and Alpha Aviation. He also became one of the youngest captains at one of the most prestigious airline in 2016. He set the bar high in that year, making him an inspiration for young pilots that time.

“Considered kami as next generation of young pilots. Nakasanayan kasi na super strict and “old school” ang airline pilots because of the vast majority of military background. But If I were to describe myself as a pilot, I would say chill lang and light sa flight. Gusto ko, masaya lang palagi sa flight, kasi mahirap na ginagawa namin e! So I really do my best to lighten up the mood palagi ng flight crew ko—siyempre without sacrificing the safety of the flight.”

“Be a good citizen first and everything will follow na.”

Mann Ed Demalata

Mann Ed ended, “I also share my flying journey on Instagram kasi I have followers na mga student pilot and future pilots who say that they look up to me. Ang sarap ng feeling to be a source of inspiration and motivation to them amidst the pandemic. I tell them to continue doing what they love to do. Be a good citizen first and everything will follow na. Matutupad din nila ang pangarap nilang maging piloto sa kabila ng pandemya. And to all flight crew members who lost their jobs ngayong pandemic, this is just a temporary stop—rough turbulence, and minor diversions. But it’ll only be a matter of time before everyone flies back up in the air in smooth-sailing flights. Kaya never lose your passion for aviation.Aand always remember why you started in the first place. Always keep praying, and soon everyone will be flying again.”

Mann Ed is also an entrepreneur. He has recently launched his T-shirt company where he sells pilot uniforms. You may check his products at @pilotoncall_shirt on Instagram. He’s also part of @oddliv.ph.

For inspiring pilot stories, follow him on his Instagram account here: @pilotoncall.

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