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ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: ALICE T
Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers...

THE WOOD GREEN OSCARS
With the announcement of Oscar nominations this week, awards season is in full swing. Seamstres...

TRUMP INAUGURATION PLAYLIST
In a post-truth age when 2+2 increasingly equals 5, reality can be difficult to distinguish fro...

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ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: ALICE T Posted by Contraband Events on January 31, 2017

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.   I have played piano since I was a very small child (four years old). There was a piano in my parent’s house that came from my Grandmother’s home city, Glasgow. Neither of my parents play piano, but it was there, and I was welcome to use it. I don’t have any brothers or sisters, so much of my childhood was spent entertaining myself inside my own head… but I was fascinated by the piano and when I became bored of playing with My Little Pony, that’s where I went. My...

THE WOOD GREEN OSCARS Posted by Contraband Events on January 26, 2017

With the announcement of Oscar nominations this week, awards season is in full swing. Seamstresses from Paris to Milan are busy sewing dazzling jewels to the hems of floor-length gowns. Statuettes are receiving their final layers of polish and teeth, their last coatings of bleach. Award ceremonies are magical occasions that serve to remind the viewing public of their noblest aspirations. In the bleak midwinter, it’s the breathless excitement of stardom that gives us the courage to defrost our car windscreens, and to ignore our partners’ triple ply thermal underwear. At this time of year, we honour the efforts of celebrities to introduce glamour and razzle dazzle to our dreary lives. In recognition of this service, it is only...

TRUMP INAUGURATION PLAYLIST Posted by Contraband Events on January 20, 2017

In a post-truth age when 2+2 increasingly equals 5, reality can be difficult to distinguish from fiction and once seemingly impossible events now feel eerily normal. In recent news: a moment of divine insight has led Katie Hopkins to take a vow of silence; Steven Spielberg has quit Hollywood to focus on producing cat GIFs; Radiohead have agreed to release a Christmas single; Tom Cruise has publically conceded that he can be ‘a bit much’ and promises to dial it down a little; the ghosts of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn have agreed to settle their differences; Tyrannosaurus Rex has been safely cloned and domesticated; and a petulant reality TV star with the temperament of a jilted bride, the face of a satsuma and the moral wisdom...

DRY JANUARY Posted by Contraband Events on January 11, 2017

Following a year that most of us chose to erase from our collective memories, the morning of January 1st provided just the right cocktail of determination and nausea to kick start a period of sober reflection. You and every self-respecting person you know have been booze-free for a staggering 11 days. With puritanical zeal, you kicked the bottle to the curb and you haven’t looked back. You are more attractive, kinder to strangers, and more tolerant of your shrill and demanding children. The world is your oyster and, to paraphrase Lady Obama, the only limit to the height of your achievement is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to remain sober for them. With everyday tasks like jogging before sunrise now easily within...

OUR PERFORMERS GET FESTIVE IN THE NEW “BRIDGET JONES’S BABY FILM” Posted by Contraband Events on September 6, 2016

If you have seen any of the previous Bridget Jones’s films, then you are aware of the hilarious ventures that Renee Zellweger encounters in her rollercoaster of a life. We were invited to the Cast & Crew screening on Sunday 4th September 2016 at Leicester Square, where an intimate double screening gave us an exclusive preview of the film. Not to forget the complimentary popcorn and drinks upon arrival! Before the film started some of the crew gave a short talk about the process of filming and all the hard work which was put in to make the film a success. Just when everyone thought the film was finally about to start, Renee Zellweger sent excitement through the audience with her charismatic personality similarly to Bridget. The...

CORPORATE CHRISTMAS PARTIES Posted by Contraband Events on August 19, 2016

As the summer festival season slowly comes to an end, and autumn waits to drop. The crazy preparation for Christmas parties and corporate entertainment starts to rise as the season emerges. On top of juggling countless duties, and wondering how the hell you are going to make a corporate event stand out, when Christmas is all about the colour red, trees, tinsel and Father Christmas! Look no further as Contraband is here to take you outside of the box. Make Christmas Mysterious with MasqMas, a masquerade twist in your event planning to make a statement. Encourage your teams to attend in their fabulous attire and place a colour scheme to enhance the theme of your event. Add an ounce of creativity with offering your guests masquerade face...

ALL ABOUT: THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF 2016 Posted by Contraband Events on August 15, 2016

 The Great British Bake Off 2016 starts again this year on Wednesday 24 August 2016, BBC One at 8pm. It was one of the most watched shows of 2015 with more than 15 million viewers tuning in for the final episode – the highest ratings the BBC has had since the World Cup Final last year! The demand for food themed entertainment has steadily grown over the last decade alongside the demand for a high quality experiential entertainment. Here at Contraband we have witnessed the growing popularity for booking a celebrity chef for corporate entertainment and private events first hand and have developed close relationships over the years working with the representatives of the chefs on our roster as their preferred ...

DEVELOP YOUR VERY OWN CORPORATE CARNIVAL WITH CONTRABAND! Posted by Contraband Events on August 11, 2016

Highlights from the competition on day 4 of the 2016 Summer Games proved to be an artistic gymnastic show, which did not lack an ounce of creativity! The ladies representing China, America and the nation’s favourite Great Britain, flipped the extra mile to foot print their personal style within their routines. The Olympics may be seasonal but you don’t have to reminisce on the highlights.  Convey the memories into your next corporate entertainment and flip your audiences’ minds. What better way to set the sporting atmosphere within your corporate event, by having an Olympian host or a guest speaker as part of your corporate entertainment. The Olympic Rhythmic Gymnasts are amazing for embracing the Olympic Gymnasts...

ALL ABOUT: BODY ART Posted by Contraband Events on July 29, 2016

The World Body Painting Festival is an annual competition and celebration of body art held earlier this month in Austria, where body painters from around the world showcase their skills in order to hold a title for a world champion and some of our talented body painters were out in Austria competing this year, including our talented face painter and body artist Brierley.      New to our books is the talented body painter – Sam – who is the artist behind our Humanimals performer and created the beautiful other worldly work pictured above.      Contraband has a vast range of body painting and SFX artists that are able to create the most intricate and intriguing body art. Face...

CONFERENCE AWARDS 2016 Posted by Contraband Events on July 7, 2016

Last Friday we sponsored and attended the 7th annual Conference Awards, this year the awards ceremony was held at The Tobacco Docks in London – an amazing venue perfect for the day. Our fabulous MD Archie was invited to present an award for one of the categories so we went along with a few of our wonderful performers to entertain the 600 event professionals present. The adorable Hedge Men and the gorgeous Silver Belles were there to greet guests as they arrived for their champagne followed by the surreal and charming Bedlam Slinkies after a boozy three course lunch. Over 600 event professionals were entertained at a long Friday afternoon lunch, hosted by the hilarious co-hosts Stephen K Amos and Pippa Evans who announced the...

ALL ABOUT: TITAN THE ROBOT Posted by Contraband Events on July 5, 2016

Titan the Robot is one of the most sought after acts currently operating in the world and Cyberstein Robots Ltd, the company behind Titan have not rested since Titan’s inception; Cyberstein owner Nik Fielding said,   “Since Titan was launched in 2004 we have constantly moved our company forward, reinvesting in Titan, the show, the supporting infrastructure and our ever increasing crew who we look upon like family.”   A lot of Titan’s success is down to his hysterically funny show.   “The core to Titan’s success is our show and we still spend an incredible amount of time on this aspect of our business, it is constantly evolving and keeping up with modern trends, the aim is...

AQUABATIX PERFORM AT THE OPENING OF THE TERRACE AT BURJ AL ARAB Posted by Contraband Events on June 15, 2016

The Aquabatix synchronised swimmers jumped at the opportunity to perform in front Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum and 500 guests at the opening of The Terrace in the Persian Gulf at the world’s only seven-star hotel, Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Dubai.   Dubai’s most iconic building stands tall in the sea and now accommodates a terrace with three swimming pools as well as a restaurant, cabanas and a beach with 1,000 tonnes of white sand. Aquabatix were asked to create a six-minute bespoke performance with 16 synchronised swimmers, eight at each end of the large freshwater pool. Performing alongside a team of dancers to live music from a female singer, the team created a unique spectacle fitting for such a...

ALL ABOUT: MAGICIANS Posted by Contraband Events on June 6, 2016

Magic has always been and will always be a way to inspire dreams. It doesn’t matter whether you are a child full of admiration for the rabbit which just came out of a hat, or an adult fascinated by the agility and the imagination of celeb magicians; magic is for everyone. It also suits to all sorts of events, from the corporate events to the private parties: birthdays, festivals, stage shows, family events, children’s entertainment. …Contraband has a wide range of magicians; there are ones for everyone’s taste! If you want to hire a magician who is able to “walk on water” and entertain your event with a genre-bending cocktail of large scale illusions, incredible sleight of hand and innovative street...

CAMILLE’S BLOG ON INTERNING AT CONTRABAND Posted by Contraband Events on June 3, 2016

I am a French student of management, purchasing, marketing and economics at the University of Strasbourg. I had to do an internship, in order to complete my 2-year-degree. I chose Contraband because I wanted to discover the entertainment industry and the English business world. I have always wished to live in a cosmopolitan and vibrant city such as London which has made this experience the perfect combination. When I arrive at Contraband for the first time, I felt at home in no time. The team welcomed me warmly, by making me visit the office. I discovered the open plan office which encourages the collaboration; it’s a dream place to work !   I was in charge of the promotion of the company with...

ALL ABOUT: THE VOICE Posted by Contraband Events on June 2, 2016

Most people know what The Voice is, but is everybody up to date on the latest news of the TV Show? Here is some info if you want to be an expert on the subject!  Boy George is the 2015 winner of the Ivor Novello Awards Outstanding Contribution to British Music; he sold over 100 million singles and over 50 million albums as a performer!Paloma Faith is the 2015 Brit Awards Best Female. She’s a woman with quirkiness, charm and an overall adorable personality. Ricky Wilson, an English singer songwriter who’s back on the show. He is the lead singer of Kaiser Chiefs, a five-piece band. Last but not least, Will.i.am the longest standing coach on The Voice UK. He is a man of many talents: rapper, songwriter, innovator...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: BRAND NEW GROOVE Posted by Contraband Events on May 31, 2016

Having a love of music, particularly live music has been key to our work in the entertainment and performing industry. There’s nothing more exciting than playing to an audience and sharing in the experience together.   My training has been a combination of the discipline of learning, practicing and mastering of instruments, proved by the highest grade qualifications. This added to the experience and enjoyment that I receive from playing in addition to my business sense which directs me on how to operate in this particular industry and market.    My favourite part of performing in the events industry is working with other like-minded people, musicians and non-musicians alike. There are those on the...

3 BLUNDERS OF CORPORATE ENTERTAINMENT Posted by Contraband Events on May 18, 2016

Entertainment expert Anthony Bollotta shares three mistakes to avoid when booking corporate entertainment for special events. Called upon by the University of San Diego to provide some professional advice for its continuing education students, Anthony Bollotta provided a brief insight into three all-too-common mistakes seen in corporate entertainment. And they are:#1: ENTERTAINMENT FOR ENTERTAINMENT'S SAKE: The fact is within the scope of an event, the entertainment should play a key role in supporting goals and objectives, rather than simply being booked for the sake of having it. I’ve seen this mistake made not only by those who may not know any better, but also by industry veterans.Every event is thrown with...

JAZZ FEST GETS $200K FOR LIVE STREAMING ON MOBILE APP Posted by Contraband Events on May 18, 2016

Coming soon to a phone near you: The 2016 Detroit Jazz Festival.The Detroit Jazz Festival has received a $200,000 grant from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. They are expanding their current mobile app to provide live streaming of performances from the downtown festival, beginning with this year's event on Labor Day weekend.Festival spokesperson Steve Blow said details are still being worked out, including how much of the festival will be available, how it will be packaged and what the cost will be to consumers. But the idea is to offer audiences around the world real-time video broadcasts from the downtown stages at the festival. The festival's current app only provides...

PANNONE CORPORATE ADVISES THE WAREHOUSE PROJECT Posted by Contraband Events on May 18, 2016

The International group Live Nation-Gaiety Holdings has bought shares in the Warehouse Project and Parklife festival.   Pannone Corporate has advised the founders of The Warehouse Project and Parklife festival on a deal with international entertainment giant, Live Nation-Gaiety Holdings. The Live Nation-Gaiety is a joint venture between two of the world’s leading live entertainment companies, Live Nation and Gaiety Investments have bought a substantial number of shares in the Manchester businesses in a move that will bring world class entertainment to the north west. The Warehouse Project was founded in 2006 by Sacha Lord-Marchionne and Sam Kandel in the disused Boddingtons Brewery and is now one of the UK’s...

WHY BOOK THROUGH AN AGENCY FOR YOUR WEDDING? Posted by Contraband Events on May 18, 2016

Why should you book through an entertainment agency for your wedding party entertainment instead of organising it yourself?    Every married person can testify that a wedding is the most stressful day ever! You have to pay attention to every detail: check that the caterers arrive on time, find a solution when the musicians tell you that their car broke down in the middle of nowhere, add to the atmosphere when your guests are bored during dinner… What an awful day isn’t it?! So now imagine how perfect your wedding entertainment can be if you book through an events agency! You’ll just have to relax and enjoy the wedding entertainment we prepared for you and your guests. No stress, just fun!  With...

JON SPEED PAINTER FOR ALFA ROMEO Posted by Contraband Events on May 16, 2016

As an entertainment agency, organising corporate events such as the promotion of the new Alfa Romeo is part of our job. Performance Communications, a Media & PR company, asked Contraband for entertainment ideas to carry out a social experiment to inspire passion on the streets for the launch of the New Giuletta in the UK. Contraband suggested the renowned speed artist Jon to capture the responses of participants on canvas.   Inspired by the New Alfa Giulietta, which represents Alfa Romeo’s latest embodiment of the marque’s passion for creating true drivers’ cars, the general public were asked simples questions: “What passion drives you?” or “If tomorrow you could do something you were...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: TUMBELLINA Posted by Contraband Events on May 10, 2016

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.   I started out in the entertainment and performing industry because I was a competitive Australian gymnast for 10 years, so it was a natural transition for me. I’ve always loved entertaining and had a natural flair for it. Even whilst competing, my shows would be very entertaining and uplifting for the audience!    To get into my line of work I had to have a top level of gymnastics followed by Circus training. The training for aerial was what really rocked my boat; it’s a great...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: DIVINE Posted by Contraband Events on May 10, 2016

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.   I was always interested in performance, but I discovered dance and circus whilst travelling in Australia when I was in my late teens. That’s how I started out in the entertainment and performing industry.   Official or otherwise! I studied a Performing Arts BTEC which gave me a fantastic broad base of experience both on stage and behind the scenes, and then went on to study a Dance Performance BA at Middlesex University. In addition I have studied one-to-one with numerous artists to...

CAMILLE'S BLOG ON HER EXPERIENCE PARTICIPATING IN A FLASH MOB Posted by Contraband Events on May 10, 2016

I am currently an intern at Contraband International Ltd, a corporate entertainment agency, where I help the team sales and do administrative and marketing projects. This is the first time that I have worked in an events agency with corporate entertainment specialists - and I love it!   On Thursday the 28th April I participated in Desiigner Panda’s flash mob in Shoreditch, London, in front of a wall where a giant panda has been tagged. I have never been part of an event in the UK before; what a fabulous experience it was!!    First, when I arrived, I met the street dancers and there were all so nice and welcoming! Then I listened to the manager who was giving the information needed for the ...

SPORTING EVENTS 2016 Posted by Contraband Events on April 18, 2016

One of the major corporate events of the summer should be the Olympics Games which take place from August the 5th to the 21st in Rio. No more than 10,500 athletes from 206 countries will compete during 17 days. What a party entertainment! 42 sports will be contested, including 2 new additional: golf and rugby which returns to the Games after 92 years. Even if 7, 5 million tickets are available you have to be careful if you want to attend the Games; the sales have already started!    If you would like to book some corporate entertainment to celebrate The Rio Olympics we have tonnes of party entertainment ideas to share and a huge roster of performers that you can book through us for...

PUBLIC EVENTS HAPPENING IN LONDON OVER THE SUMMER Posted by Contraband Events on April 18, 2016

Summer is fast approaching, and you might wonder what is happening in the city? What are the best days out in London? Here are lots of events happening in London to have fun and enjoy yourself!    First, there are festivals that take place all summer. The most famous one must be the British Summertime Festival which takes place in Hyde Park from July the 2nd to July the 9th. Some of the biggest names in music will be performing, from the new school to the old school; with artists such as Carole King, Stevie Wonder, Take that, Massive Attack… There is someone to suit all tastes! In addition to the music performance, the festival hosts events dedicated to film, literature, sports, and also a variety of activities...

ST GEORGES DAY IN TRAFALGAR SQUARE Posted by Contraband Events on April 6, 2016

Enjoy St Georges Day London events with live music, parades, children’s activities and more. Fly the flag and celebrate English heritage in London.   Celebrate St George From a free festival in Trafalgar Square to art and museum exhibitions that celebrate the culture and heritage of England this St Georges Day, London has plenty of special events taking place where you can mark the feast day of the patron saint of the English. And if classical music concerts, Shakespeare plays and guided art tours aren't your cup of tea, there's always patriotic pints at the pub or hearty fare at London restaurants to enjoy.A little bit of History! Saint George's Day is the feast day of Saint George. It...

SPRING WITH CONTRABAND! Posted by Contraband Events on April 6, 2016

With the Spring season breaking the skies above us I am one happier Easter bunny as a result which makes it a lot easier to start some fresh thinking of event entertainment ideas! Working at a corporate entertainment agency means we’re all on it with what’s coming ahead in the year of corporate entertainment and we make sure we have event entertainment ideas already brewing in anticipation - and so here I am writing this blog to help you get hype up some of those vibes and aware of what’s occurring this month and how we can cater your corporate event entertainment or inspire you to get out there and see what event entertainment there is going on out there.April 1st: April Fools Day starts the month of April showers by...

ST. PATRICK'S DAY Posted by Contraband Events on March 17, 2016

Why Do We Celebrate St. Patrick's Day? 10 Facts About History Of Irish Holiday  It's March 17 and that only means one thing... Happy St. Patrick's Day everybody! We hope you are all wearing green because if you're not. you know you'll get pinched. As everyone goes out to celebrate drinking green beer, gather with friends at a pub, eat the yummy corned beef or reading up on the famous Irish personalities, we need to know why we celebrate this holiday. It's fun to gather knowledge as to why we do the things we do. It's a tradition, but we don't always know how or why it was started. Here are 17 fun and historical facts around the Irish holiday:1. Who Is St...

PLAN A MEMORABLE CHRISTMAS CORPORATE EVENT Posted by Contraband Events on November 11, 2015

Christmas corporate entertainment can be difficult to plan. It’s not easy to find one activity or type of celebration that pleases everyone. But this year is going to be different if you get in touch with Contraband Events. This is one company that knows how to entertain, and they are ready and willing to show you some exciting options for a Christmas celebration that your employees and clients won’t soon forget.   Forget about sitting on Old Saint Nick’s knee and having boring carollers sing uninteresting versions of the songs you hear every year. Instead, Contraband Events can work with you to hire a variety of entertaining acts and have themes that will wow your corporate audience. Here are some of the...

ORGANISE YOUR CHRISTMAS PARTY NOW! Posted by Contraband Events on October 21, 2015

Yes, its October however, you should be prepared! especially if you are managing a team and everyone are fussy on what they want to do for Christmas! Organising your Christmas Party can be a pain, however, Contraband Events can take all that stress away as we literally deal with everything! From venue picking and choosing a venue theme to amazing talent and entertainment hire for the evening!  Your guests will experience a festive fiesta to remember!  You will find everything you need at Contraband Events, with lots of Corporate Christmas Party Ideas, we have fabulous Christmas Entertainers and Christmas Entertainment to really make your Corporate Christmas Party or Personal Christmas Party a festive event to...

CONTRABAND IS A LEADING UK & USA LEADING BOOKING AGENT Posted by Contraband Events on April 29, 2015

Organising your Summer Parties this year!  Corporate or Personal Event, we can provide and manage the latest artists, we have access to most popular Celebrities right now, just by one phone call – your event will be most spectacular and remembered. You may think the world of rep carpets celebrities is as unreachable as the sky, however as the UK’s leading no1 Celebrity Booking Agent, Contraband Events have proven you can achieve access full access and contact with these Artists, Actors and TV personals for your event. Contraband Events act as an agent for a diverse range of Celebrities, we have the resources to ensure we fulfil all event requirements. With our extensive list of contacts,we can help you...

FESTIVAL SEASON! BOOKING AGENT Posted by Contraband Events on April 15, 2015

Festival Season Has Arrived!   Contraband has been working alongside top successful artists for over 10 years now, their reputation is very well known and respected in the media industry – being the top booking agent in the UK!Contraband manages and provides guests and props for events daily, they have recently hosted some events with Katy Perry, Dynamo, David Guetta, Justin Bieber and Will.i.am.David Guetta is one of our favourite celebrities we work with, a talented DJ who really knows how to get any crowd on their feet and up all night, David and Nicki Minaj are headlining this June at the Wireless Festival! 2015 is a big year for Festivals and Gigs! With the hottest crazy line-ups ever...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: HIGH ROLLAZ - ROLLAR SKATING DANCE TROUPE Posted by Contraband Events on April 14, 2015

Our Artist Spotlight blogs is a feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.  Before the group High Rollaz was formed, we started skating as a way to connect with friends. Eventually, we formed the group and started looking for different audience and places to perform. It all happened naturally!                                                ...

TALENT BOOKING AGENT Posted by Contraband Events on March 23, 2015

What is a Talent Agent?  A talent agent is somebody who acts on behalf of professional actors, writers, musicians, performers, artists, and athletes to name a few. Agents work to indorse and represent their clients’ welfares, and will usually manage the bulk of all communications concerning their client and the organisation. What does a Talent Agent figure out?  The responsibilities of a talent agent include a lot of communication and negotiation abilities with potential employers. Improvements in information technology have permitted talent agents to achieve much in their job duties.Talent agents show off the abilities of their clients as well as executing other promotional responsibilities. Basically, the amount...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: OLLY MURS Posted by Contraband Events on March 20, 2015

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.Essex-born pop sensation, Olly Murs has worked his way up through the charts and is a top TV Personality.  After releasing his first self-titled debut album in 2010, Olly has been on the rollercoaster to success since his hit single “Please Don’t Let Me Go”. Olly then went on to host his own TV show “A Night in with Olly Murs” which entertained 3 million on ITV! So who wouldn’t want Olly Murs at their party? There are many reasons to have Olly Murs...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: SAM SMITH Posted by Contraband Events on March 20, 2015

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. The ‘I'm Not The Only One’ singer has made known that his grand hangover from the after party of the Grammys, has left him the worse for wear.Sam won a remarkable four gongs at the Grammy Honours in Los Angeles. So it should be of no surprise that Sam Smith was eager to celebrate his victories. Sam was partaking in the festivities along with his famous Instagram account to let everyone in on his pain after downing a big sum of liquor in celebration of his inspiring four Grammy awards...

AGATHE'S BLOG ON INTERNING AT CONTRABAND INTERNATIONAL Posted by Contraband Events on March 17, 2015

Agathe from France Joined Contraband International on a 6 Week Internship. She is currently a 1st year student at Ecole Atlantique de Commerce, a business school in Nantes. Here is a blog about her time with us.   I had the opportunity to do my internship at Contraband because a girl of my school had already done her internship at Contraband before.                                                                        Teatro Hand Shadow Show from Italy and Go Beyond Dance               ...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: JACK SPARROW LOOK A LIKE Posted by Contraband Events on March 4, 2015

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. Since I was little I was always interested in drama and performing and I strongly felt it was something I could see myself eventually doing when I was older. I absolutely love entertaining people and the feeling you get after you have performed is euphoric! With Captain Jack it was merely a Halloween costume many years ago and I was getting various comments saying how alike I was to the famous pirate, I guess that’s what propelled me to try and make a living as a Captain Jack Sparrow lookalike.  &ldquo...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: PATENT PENDING Posted by Contraband Events on December 5, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. We were absolutely delighted when we were told that we had been chosen to go and perform our comedy in Abu Dhabi this November. Firstly because it was so damn cold in England and we had forgotten what the sun looked like, and secondly because we were honoured to discover exactly where we would be performing and why.    Patent Pending The Masdar Institute of Science and Technology in Abu Dhabi was established as an independent, research-driven graduat ...

TEAM BUILDING Posted by Contraband Events on September 16, 2014

Team building... what did just come to your mind when reading this? Obvious, isn't it? Completely obvious in essence, the phrase speaks for itself, but then... when we think a little further... what is it, really? It involves a whole bunch of activities and dynamics, basically anything a group could do together. But then, of course, it requires... A GROUP! This is the key, the starting point and also the main goal of these dynamics. All team building events, team building entertainment and team building activities have one single purpose: to create groups. It aims on developing strong relationships among people. Relationships that will help them be together on a daily basis and...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: ANN-HELENA Posted by Contraband Events on September 5, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.  Ann-Helena Schlüter, our beautiful pianist and vocalist, was born into a Musical family. Her father is a pianist as well, Prof. Karl-Heinz Schlüter, and she started the piano at a very early stage in her life, she was only 3 years old!! She played in her first competition two years later, as a 5-year old talent, and also gave her first public concert that same year. Ann-Helena’s parents soon discovered that her sisters and she were very talented both on piano and violin. Of course she didn’t...

WHY SHOULD YOU BOOK THROUGH AN AGENCY? Posted by Contraband Events on August 27, 2014

Why should you book your event’s entertainment through a specialized agency instead of contacting the artists directly?   We are experts in what we do which happens to be what you seem to be looking for too) You are safe in the knowledge that should an issue occur it will be resolved You will have peace of mind for your important event! We’ll deal with all it takes for you and that will save you a lot of time   You can think about the craziest act for your event… we will make it happen for sure We have over 2300 acts and performers of all kinds on our books… how many can you find yourself? Our performers are reliable professionals and we know...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: TOMMY & THE BELLES Posted by Contraband Events on August 19, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. We’ve decided to interview Tommy & The Belles – our lively Party & Function Band – because Sofia and Lauren (our most recent girls in the office) went to their concert at The Arts Club in Mayfair two weeks ago. “What a fab atmosphere, mid-way through the whole crowd were up on the dancefloor dancing without inhibition. They looked and sounded polished. Loved it!”     1. How & why did you start out in...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: AQUABATIX Posted by Contraband Events on August 13, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.  Katie Fried from the fantastic synchronised swimmers group Aquabatix, and Adele Carlsen, her fellow director, both have had a long and extensive international career in synchronised swimming. They competed internationally from the age of 11 to 24 in competitions such as the World Championships and Commonwealth Games. They were duet partners for the majority of their swimming careers and still remain great friends today as well as business partners. Throughout their competitive careers they...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: MIRROR PEOPLE Posted by Contraband Events on August 8, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.  The purity and glow of the mirror family members bring peace and optimism everywhere. The presence of Mirror People will guarantee radiance, excellence and aesthetic uniqueness. Their entire bodies are covered with hundreds of mirrors from head to toe. The result is a stunning reflecting being that bounces the light of the world right back upon its viewers.   These two wonderful performers wanted to bring something brand new to the performing arts...

CELEBRATING CONTRABAND 10TH ANNIVERSARY & ARCHIE’S BIRTHDAY! Posted by Contraband Events on August 6, 2014

Let’s make a toast to Contraband!!   It is all about artists, shows, events… it is all about the performing arts! It is all about friendship, sharing happy memories, co-operation… it is all about team work! It is all about knowledge, unforgettable moments, mind-blowing experiences… it is all about our clients! It is all about dance, circus, acrobatics… it is all about entertainment!     Yesterday was an extremely important date for the company as we celebrated both Archie’s birthday and Contraband’s 10th anniversary. Huge HAPPY BIRTHDAY! We hope to be here to see more wonderful years to come...

2014 SUMMER AWAY DAY Posted by Contraband Events on July 29, 2014

One important thing about Contraband is that we like to feel that we are surrounded by friends and happiness when we come to work every day. We like to appreciate the time we spend with our colleagues and having fun around them… and not just when we have the pleasure to watch performers coming into the office to show us their acts. Our brilliant MD, Miss Archie Archer, has even taught us that above anything else, she cares about both our professional and personal matters. And that is the key to the friendly and relaxed environment felt in our office on a daily basis. That said, all opportunities count to build close and warm relationships. That’s why every summer we have what we call our &ldquo...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: HELIUM BALLOON SHOW Posted by Contraband Events on July 28, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.   The Helium Balloon Show is an amazing aerial performance that fills any big outdoor or indoor stage with magic and colours. A huge bunch of big balloons and an acrobat flying with them, without rigs or cranes, static or in movement, anything is possible!       Marta Gutiérrez has always loved entertainment and the performing arts in general. Starting with dance and acrobatics, she then learned circus techniques...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: MAGICAL BONES Posted by Contraband Events on July 22, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.Sue Harbottle got his career started as a hip-hop dancer, going to as many dance events as he could and taking part in several competitions as well. He easily moved on to doing music videos and live events as a specialist break-dancer and, being passionate about magic since an early stage, he also started adding magic visuals to his performance. He got into b-boying (breakdancing) by training on the streets with other dancers and learned...

BEING A PERFORMER: WHAT ABOUT IT? Posted by Contraband Events on July 16, 2014

Being a performer could not possibly be a part-time or a seasonal job. Not even a simple straight forward “full-time” job. I don’t even know why people use the word, “job” in the same sentence they use “performer”. It is definitely more than a job. But being a performer could not possibly be a free time activity either to be enjoyed once in a while. It is not just a hobby and could never be seen as one either. So… if performance is not a profession nor a pastime, what could it be? Well, I have never been a mother but I have been a performer and I believe that some similarities can be found between both “life statuses”, let’s say. Once one decides he wants to become a...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: LEVITATIONIST Posted by Contraband Events on July 1, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.   Antonio Santos is an internationally known Guiness World Record winner staticman. This overwhelming levitationist has been static for a period of 20 hours – time during which he could only breathe and move his eyes. He was standing, motionless since 4 am on a Friday until past midnight on Sunday morning at “The Day After”, in Portugal.  “I didn’t feel my feet anymore. I thought I could fall down at any moment.”   Having a deep...

SOPHIA'S BLOG ON INTERNING AT CONTRABAND Posted by Contraband Events on June 23, 2014

Hi there! I am Sofia, 24-year-old student from Portugal. Somehow, I have always been connected to this fantastic world of performance, acrobatics and shows. I could say everything started in 2005, but that was just the first time I felt the need to open my horizons…                                       I was only 9 years old when I was first introduced to an acrobatics class in the Portuguese famous Benfica Stadium. I quickly engaged with the practice three times a week for the following 6 years. From the early stages until the last days I dedicated most of my free time to what I considered...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: KEITH - PICKPOCKET Posted by Contraband Events on June 2, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. As a performer, Keith is in what must be the most vulnerable of professions. However, against the odds, his pickpocketing act has survived 3 decades, two recessions and the death of the light entertainment industry.  “I’m not interested in show business per se, in being a performer, but I wanted my own lifestyle. And it’s the only job I’ve done that’s me. Everything else I was faking it.”   Keith puts this success down to his rarity &ndash...

BOOKING AGENCY Posted by Contraband Events on June 2, 2014

When looking to carry out a promotional event there are many avenues in which you can take. Do you want a celebration of your brand or are you trying to promote a new service/ product? Will the event be a one-of promotion or just one of various events happening nationwide? Depending on what you want to promote, there are a wide number of options available to you! Not got a lot of time but want to make a big impact? Then flash mobs might be the answer to your concerns. Flash mobs are great if you want to get your message or brand into a public space without taking up a lot of physical space. Ranging from as little as 10 members, a group of seemingly ordinary people can suddenly burst into song or a dance routine. Many flash mobs have a...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: BETTY - STRONG LADY SHOW Posted by Contraband Events on May 12, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.  I studied theatre at university, but found my way to circus after performing in one too many very serious plays.  I wanted to perform in a way that uplifted people and was accessible to everyone  Betty Strong Lady After training in theatre, my ‘official’ training ended… all my circus and physical theatre training has been through workshops, short courses and by diving in the deep end… I had some very formative influence in my...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: RICHARD GRAFFITI ARTIST Posted by Contraband Events on May 7, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.   I’ve been a graffiti artist for over 15 years and this has been my profession for 7years. Living in Bristol, which is considered the capital for graffiti art in the UK, I have gained much experience in commercial works with local councils, independent businesses and corporations.   “I am a time served professional in the graffiti art world and have gained a good and credible reputation as a mural artist, workshop leader and solo artist”  ...

ALL ABOUT: IPAD CARICATURES Posted by Contraband Events on April 28, 2014

Firstly we use the term 'iPad' generically as virtually all caricaturists who work digitally do not work on an iPad. Why? Because iPads are rubbish for drawing on. "What about David Hockney!" I hear you, and several thousand art lovers, cry. Well the difference is that we have five to ten minutes to produce a very detailed picture and he can take as long as he likes, 'cos he's David Hockney. The iPad has no dedicated stylus which means you would have to use your finger. 'I've got a stylus for my iPad!' again you cry. Yes but it's a lump of rubber glued to the end of a stick, it's not made or endorsed by Apple and, for our purposes, it's no better than your...

THE CORPORATE EVENT ENTERTAINMENT AGENCY Posted by Contraband Events on April 15, 2014

Want to make sure that you have an event that really will leave your guests talking? Bring in an element of magic or introduce your crowd to the supernatural, by hiring corporate entertainment for your event that really seems to come from another world! Our fascination with the supernatural and magic can be documented since the Tudors and beyond, and ever since we have been trying to work out how exactly magicians and mystics perform the feats that they do. The Greeks regularly questioned about man’s own ability to shape the world around them and how to control the perceptions of others. During the Renaissance, the question of magic was inseparably linked with the question of human knowledge. These questions still remain...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: LAURA FOOTBALL FREESTYLER Posted by Contraband Events on April 14, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.   I started performing in 2009, after I was spotted by an agent that took me to a few events and from there I learned quickly about the industry. “I really enjoyed amusing people with my tricks” It takes a lot of daily training to achieve a good level but to be able to work in the entertainment industry you need more than titles and awards,. Laura Football Freestyle | Italy & Venezuela     Each event is unique and every time it’s something new, that's...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: JON ARTIST, SPEED PAINTER & PERFORMER Posted by Contraband Events on April 7, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. I went to Art College, Fine Art degree; one of the things it taught me was to think creatively and laterally, to walk my own path. I always liked performing; showing off, always enjoyed watching cabaret acts, speciality acts, and street performers. I just didn't really know a way in.   I was a performance poet in the 90s, mostly around the London circuit, and really just for fun. Used to pavement draw for a while in the early 90s, I got talking to the street performers, one of...

VICTORIA’S BLOG ON INTERNING AT CONTRABAND Posted by Contraband Events on March 31, 2014

I am currently in a first year of three in a French business school which focuses on marketing, communication, management and languages. I come from France, my city is Nantes. It’s at 2 hours in train from Paris; it’s in the north west of France and it’s very near to Britain. Later, I want to work in the event sector because I think this sector can create a lot of relationships, for me which is very important. For that, I want to do a Master in Management in a business school. For the end of my first years in my school I had to have an internship in an English speaking country for two months. I would like to have this work placement in the event sector because I envisage working in this area later...

HIRING A CELEBRITY SINGER FOR YOUR CORPORATE EVENT Posted by Contraband Events on March 28, 2014

Fancy giving your corporate event or awards ceremony a little bit of an X Factor? Many agencies will have a wide range of celebrity singers for hire on their books, most of which you will probably recognise from shows such as The X-Factor! Everything disagrees when it comes to the winners, so you will find many of the most popular contestants will be represented, meaning that you can give an opportunity to your favourite contestant by hiring them to sing or perform at your event.    Just looking at some of the celebrity singers for hire that you can find online, at least if you choose to go with an ex-X Factor contestant at least you will know how they perform or what they sound like before your event! I would be...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: JUNK- EVENT MAGAZINE AWARDS ACT OF THE YEAR 2013 Posted by Contraband Events on March 17, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.  Performing is a passion that we all share together and having the chance to be able to achieve performing as a career has driven us to where we are today. “It has been a very long road and there is still one hell of a journey but looking forward to everything coming our way!”  We all met at Brockenhurst College where we studied performing arts together, this was the start of JuNk but personal skills have come into use creating, directing and managing the group.   ...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: THE HEDGE MEN AND ALIVE LIVING STATUES Posted by Contraband Events on February 13, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment.The Hedge Men – Human Statues   I’m officially unsuitable for normal work. I had a proper job for a few years in a theatre and would get so bored that I perfected the art of sitting at a desk asleep with a mouse in my hand ready to spring into action should anyone by chance come into the office (which rarely happened).  “I opted to make a living out of doing nothing so packed my bags and headed to London to become a busking Human Statue and the Hedge Men were a...

ALL ABOUT: TRANSFER TATTOO'S Posted by Contraband Events on January 28, 2014

Contraband has been supplying transfer tattoos to clients for over 20 years now but where did it all start and why did I ever start manufacturing tattoos? Sitting in the sun in Delhi in my factory in 1999, drinking my chai and I had one of those ‘eureka moments’. Flicking through my henna design book I thought I’d pick the top 100 designs that people wanted henna tattoos and print my own transfer tattoo range, package them and flog them at the Clothes show on my henna stand. Henna crazy transfer tattoos were born and designs included ‘Bitch’ in Chinese (well it was the third most popular design in the book), Dragons, Chinese symbols...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: COCKNEY PRIDE Posted by Contraband Events on January 16, 2014

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of professional entertainment. British: Pearly Kings & Queens - Cockney Band | Essex  I had no aspirations involving the music and entertainment industry. In the early sixties I was a (very young) hot shot banker determined to reach the top in international finance. Tea break in the staff room, chatting to a fellow fiscal slave – here’s the conversation - ‘Why don’t you come down the Queen’s Head tonight? There’s a folk night on with a very good guest American singer and guitarist....

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: TROPICALIA Posted by Contraband Events on December 17, 2013

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of professional entertainment                                                                                     ...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: HOGARTH Posted by Contraband Events on December 11, 2013

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of professional entertainment.   I started out in the entertainment industry because I’ve been involved in the arts my all life, so it seemed a natural progression My qualification is a drama school, but most of my learning has come from being in the business for 20 years.   My favourite thing about performing in the events industry is the combination of arts and business. Events provide this combination.  “The key elements for working in the events industry is being able to think like a...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: RUBBER RITCHIE Posted by Contraband Events on December 3, 2013

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world ofprofessional entertainment.                                 I was always joking and laughing at school. My grades made my parents laugh. I began in showing business; playing in glam rock bands when I was 14. I dressed up as a vampire on my first ever gig despite the rest of the band being in jeans and t shirts. After leaving school I toured with a band playing a star shaped bass, 4 inch platform boots and never enough makeup. ...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: MAGICIAN JOSH Posted by Contraband Events on November 26, 2013

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of corporate entertainment.   Unlike most magicians, I wasn't exposed to magic at a young age, I only started about 6 years ago when an old friend of mine and I were in a casino and he started to pull poker chips out of seemingly thin air. Like anyone I was completely baffled and obviously wanted to know HOW! Fortunately he told me and to my amazement I was able to do the trick almost instantly. To this day I still carry a poker chip around with me everywhere I go.“Magic is like...

SHENEL'S BLOG ON WORKING AT CONTRABAND Posted by Contraband Events on November 18, 2013

Joining Contraband at the start of 2012 was a dream come true!  All I’ve ever wished for was to work in a creative environment, with lovely people and the possibility of exciting things happening!   After almost 2 years at Contraband International, I can happily say that I’ve hit the JACKPOT! As an administrator, I primarily deal with the performers and with a roster of over 2000 acts, I get to speak with a variety of personalities from all walks of life, who are doing what they love the most- entertaining people! I type 6000 contracts yearly, and it’s wonderful to see what sort of events Contraband are involved in. I also deal with diary management, ensuring that it corresponds with the live events...

MOOEZ'S BLOG ON WORKING AT THE CONTRABAND HQ Posted by Contraband Events on November 4, 2013

Before I started my internship with Contraband, I had zero knowledge of the corporate entertainment industry. My background up until that point was almost completely irrelevant and so was my work experience. Because of this, I felt anxious and nervous about working there, but the opportunity was too invaluable. Add into the mix that I’m disaster prone when it comes to punctuality, and you have a mindset which is not ideal. Within the first week, however, all of my fears were swiftly replaced with excitement. I was warmly welcomed by the wonderful (and tolerant) Contraband team and made to feel at home instantly. Instead of being given boring work with no quantifiable impact, I was treated the same as any of the team members and...

CHRISTMAS ENTERTAINMENT WITH CONTRABAND Posted by Contraband Events on November 1, 2013

After a delayed and much anticipated summer it’s here... the Christmas season is here! It snuck up on us faster than we could say break dancing Santa’s and Christmas baubles. Although we think you will all agree it isn’t the season to be jolly until we can get our mittens on some mulled wine and the coca cola advert is on the TV! But hey -ho we work in events and Christmas starts, well, pretty much just after the last one!    For those of you who haven’t jumped on the Christmas sleigh just yet, we thought we would write a little blog to get you in the spirit and show you some of our best festive acts and Christmas entertainment.    After a brilliant year of British film, the top of...

CHRISTMAS PARTY ENTERTAINMENT IDEAS Posted by Contraband Events on October 25, 2013

There are many different types of Christmas parties depending on who you are spending time with. Are you just getting together with a couple of friends or are you having a sit down dinner with your work colleagues? Either way you are going to need a couple of Christmas party entertainment ideas to stop your celebrations from falling into the old clichés.   First you must consider the following:Music: Are you just going to play your own music or do you want a live band/ singer?Food/drink: Are you having a full course dinner or do you need to hire a bartender?Entertainers: Have you got a stage to fill or want someone to mingle with your guests?Photos: How are your guests going to remember the event, are they going to take away...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: NEIL Posted by Contraband Events on August 7, 2013

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of entertainment. This week we are featuring our incredibly gifted body painting artist Neil, who not only works as a professional body painter but also uses his superb creative eye to develop unique character walkabout acts for events, including Cirque du Chic, Gothic Mansion, The Candy Dandies, Avatar Characters, and A Golden Masquerade. Neil creates these amazing acts exclusively for Contraband, and here he tells us about his training and his inspirations for his work.   Neil grew up in a...

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: USO Posted by Contraband Events on July 24, 2013

Our Artist Spotlight blogs are a weekly feature where we focus on one of our performers, giving you the chance to find out more about the people behind the performances, and offering an insight into the world of professional entertainment. This week we’re talking to the brilliantly talented contemporary orchestra and urban string group USO about how they got into the professional music industry, what it’s like to perform alongside some of the biggest music acts in the UK, where they find their inspiration, and offering their advice to anybody that is considering a career as a musician.                                    ...



We are Contraband International, an award-winning London-based corporate entertainment agency providing entertainers for any event, party or wedding. This is our blog on Corporate Entertainment.