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'Elvis' is sometimes 3 times per year in the same hall: tribute acts are more popular than ever
Music Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson or Pink Floyd live at work: it seems impossible. But thanks to the countless tribute acts that today along the Flemish stages of revolutions, these (often deceased) heroes closer than ever. Alone in the Kursaal Ostend this year 19 of such hommagegroepen programmed: "It's really increasing."

For Gwendoline Nys, deputy director of the Kursaal, it is equally clear: it is hard for tribute-artists. Of the 130 à 140 acts each year in the hall programmed, there may be this year 19 under the title of 'tribute band' classified. "That is still only 13% of the total number and spread over the full year. We will also make sure that this is the maximum number of continues, we notice that the range remains strong rise," she says. "The performances in our be planned to attract also always a lot of spectators."

Nys distributes the tribute-acts in two groups. "There are those who try to be both visually and musically, the original band is very strong to approach, and you have acts that the music of the original artist in their own way. Which kind is most successful, it depends purely of the group."

No lookalike

Ivann Vermeer, who for two years with a George Michael-act tours, belongs to the second category. "When people don't know where they are going to come and watch, they are the first two songs are very reluctant. They know that a tribute act never be as good as the original singer. This is why I have chosen to no lookalike. I'm George Michael, I will never, and I do not want to try. But we bring his numbers with a lot of respect for the original."

"I note, however, that in the last years a lot of tribute acts to Flanders," says Vermeer. "The strange thing is that, for example, in one year's time two or three Elvis-bands in the same room. Ten years ago, you had to not try. It lives so, although there is still margin. As popular as in Germany the genre is in Belgium, not yet. We go often abroad, and foreign acts come regularly to Belgium. But I fear all the time of how fan clubs from other countries to Belgium down to our band. It then goes to English, French, Dutch or German clubs, all of the tribute bands come to an end."

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