By Ray Gosselin
Look-a-Like or Look-a-Fright? Booking an Unseen Look-a-Like Act
Halloween is a great time to dress up and pretend to be someone else, but for your important corporate event, you want a true professional look-a-like, not just someone playing dress up. No one wants a Halloween fright all year!
At EPIC Entertainment, we have extensive experience booking look-a-likes and we’ve seen the best to the worst. Be aware that there is a huge range in quality. So, if you are planning to book a look-a-like act, consider the following:
- Look-a-like vs. dress up: Any woman in a platinum wig does not become Marilyn Monroe (although some believe it to be so). There is a huge difference between just dressing up and actually looking like the celebrity. Always be sure to see a photo. At EPIC, one of our most popular look-a-likes is Susan Griffith, an A-List Marilyn look-a-like who has been featured in movies, print and more.
- Look-a-like vs. sound-a-like: Even if the person is a spitting image of the real celebrity, never assume they sound alike as well. Don’t plan for them to sing or even speak with guests if you haven’t also confirmed that they possess that additional talent. They may only be good for a photo opp. Choose a booking agency that can provide sound samples as well when your look-a-like is expected to do a singing performance. Also, don’t assume they can just walk up and “perform” with just any hired band.
- Pretty face vs. professional show: Sometimes even when an impersonator looks the part, and even sounds the part for singing or a bit of chit chat with guests, they still may not be experienced enough to emcee a program or perform a full act. One of our tried and true favorites is Nick D’Egidio, a Frank Sinatra act who epitomizes the true professional impersonator. The minute Nick steps out of his car, he is “The Chairman of the Board.” He is in character for the duration of the event, can emcee, and performs a full tribute with his own Dry Martini Orchestra.
- Sexy vs. suitable: It’s important to ensure that the impersonator has experience with corporate events and is clear about what is appropriate and what is expected of them. Sometimes even when a client wants a look-a-like with a racy or very controversial image, they don’t necessarily want the impersonator to behave exactly that way at the event.
- Paycheck vs. RSVP: although your look-a-like may be asked to mingle among the guests, they need to be clear that they are not invited to the party. They are hired to work at the party. They should not be drinking, eating or ever let their guard down.
Before you agree to book any look-a-like act, be sure that you are working with a professional agency that reviews its performers well before you see them. At EPIC Entertainment, we only book trusted and reliable talent that we have personally qualified. We provide photos, demos and promotional material to all of our clients as part of our booking process. Don’t let a Halloween dress up show ruin your corporate event. Call us and we will ensure that your look-a-like act is the “real deal.”