It was late 2019 when former UAAP courtside reporter Rain Matienzo started her TikTok page after a hectic basketball season; but just like everyone else, it was quarantine that drew her more to the video platform. Since going viral for her witty impersonations of a Conyo Girl (a college girl code-switching between Filipino and English languages in casual conversation), Rain has taken off as one of the highly raved-about Filipina users of the app. She has already amassed nearly 3 million likes and 140k followers, something she takes little credit for. “Truth be told, it’s my followers who give me so many great ideas!” she humbly says.
Rain has hit career milestones beyond the viral app — hosting mainstream media events alongside A-list celebrities and recently starring in a music video for the song “Tabi-Tabi Po” by KMKO alongside fellow social media personalities Inka Magnaye and Adrian Cotoco.
Below, we spoke with the rising star about her creative process, life outside of her conyo girl persona, and what’s next after TikTok!
What’s your process for creating?
A lot of my creative drive comes whenever I’m about to go to sleep! Sometimes, I would lie in bed and suddenly think of a scenario. There aren’t many things going outside of my life at home, so I mostly rely on flashbacks of the good times that me and my friends enjoyed when we were still allowed to go out. I usually evaluate if a specific scenario can be translated into a POV that can potentially be relatable to people.
What’s your favorite Tiktok video that you’ve made?
Oh, it’s definitely me being the boyfriend’s best friend! It made a lot of people’s blood boil since it’s something that a lot of girls can relate to. When the video started blowing up, that’s when I knew that my portrayal was effective and that inspired me to create more!
Is that also the one who took you the longest to conceptualize and film?
What took me the longest was my duet with Aunt Julie (a persona by another content creator popularly known as Macoy Dubs). I’m a huge fan of him so I was a bit pressured, and people were also telling me that I’m the perfect person to play Cassandra (a famous character on Aunt Julie’s TikToks). A lot of users already did their own versions of the duet so I really thought of what I could bring to the table that’s new! It took me five takes just to get the perfect shot.
Did you get feedback from him?
Yeah, we’ve been talking on social media a lot! I know he’s really busy and I actually miss Aunt Julie on Tiktok, but I’m proud that he’s flourishing in other platforms, especially on TV! He messages me as well because, apparently, he’s a huge fan of the UAAP and college basketball so we’ve had several conversations about those.
How would you describe the Conyo Girl persona?
The way I see Conyo Girl is that she’s that Type A person who’s very outgoing and studious. I have a lot of conyo friends so I fuse a lot of their good personalities into one character. I think that’s the main reason why the feedback has been good and the character has been relatable to many people.
How do you resonate with her in real life? Would you call yourself a Conyo Girl?
I don’t think so! I’m very outspoken, which I attribute to me being in the media industry. I’ve met people who are a lot like me as well! I go back to my introverted self when I’m not on TikTok. Contrary to a lot of the characters I portray, I’m far from being the girlfriend that moms like and the attentive classmate who’s always the teachers’ favorite!
What are you looking forward to nowadays?
I’m now in my senior year so I’m really looking forward to hopefully spending another semester back in school again! I know it’s highly unlikely for now since we still don’t know when the pandemic’s going to be over, but the thought of getting that one last hurrah of being in real school before I graduate and doing normal things with my friends again makes me really excited!
And as a content creator?
I’m actually planning to shift to YouTube! It’s not gonna be anytime sooner as it’s gonna take a huge commitment; but, hopefully, that’s my next step into getting out of my comfort zone!