Meet the tribute acts in BBC’s new talent show Even Better Than the Real Thing

Whitney Houston, George Michael, Little Mix, Amy Winehouse and Bruno Mars (well, their tribute acts at any rate) perform in the first episode of BBC1's new Saturday night entertainment show

Even Better Than The Real Thing

Sorry, you’ll have to wait another week before Strictly Come Dancing’s first live show, but BBC is filling the Strictly void with a brand new entertainment show: Even Better Than The Real Thing.

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The premise is simple: “the UK’s best tribute acts” compete against each other for audience votes, performing their heroes’ classic tracks and trying to convince viewers they are the genuine article.

The first episode sees tribute acts for Whitney Houston, George Michael, Little Mix, Amy Winehouse and Bruno Mars go head to head – but what do you need to know about the acts taking part?

Find out more about all the singers below – Even Better Than The Real Thing airs at 7pm on BBC1 this Saturday 16th September.

Belinda Davids is… Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston Even Better Than The Real Thing

The star of The Whitney Houston Show, South African singer Belinda Davids will be performing I Have Nothing as Whitney this Saturday night.

Feeling on top of the world today! Bring on tonight!!! ????✨ #whitneyhoustonshow

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Check out some of her previous performances on YouTube below.


Little Fix are… Little Mix

Little Mix Even Better Than The Real Thing

Little Mix tribute act Little Fix are a group of four musical theatre performers based in Glasgow (real names Megan Walker, Heather McDonald, Stephanie Barclay and Amy Craik). Check out their cover of Shout Out To My Ex below.

They’ll be performing Wings on Even Better Than The Real Thing this Saturday night.

What you doing this Saturday at 7pm? Here's @mcguinness.paddy with some advice… ?? #evenbetter #bbc1

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Tania Alboni is… Amy Winehouse

Amy Winehouse Even Better Than The Real Thing

Tania’s been performing as Amy Winehouse since 2007, and says she became “more passionate than ever” about paying tribute to her following the singer’s death in July 2011.

She’ll be performing Back To Black on BBC1 this Saturday – but you can check out a previous TV appearance on German TV singing Rehab below.


Jeff Dingle is… Bruno Mars

Bruno Mars Even Better Than The Real Thing

Jeff appeared on American Idol in 2004, and now lives and performs in the UK with a number of shows. Since 2013 he’s been performing as Bruno Mars, and will be singing his hit Treasure on the BBC this Saturday.

See Jeff performing Uptown Funk below.


Rob Lamberti is… George Michael

George Michael Even Better Than The Real Thing

Rob first appeared as George Michael way, way back in 1994 on ITV’s Stars In Their Eyes. According to his official profile, “the programme’s make-up department had to ‘tone down’ his natural appearance before the ‘transformation’ took place, so as not to give away who Rob would be impersonating.”

He still performs up and down the country as George, and will be singing Father Figure on Even Better Than The Real Thing. Get a taster in the video below.

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Even Better Than The Real Thing begins Saturday 16th September at 7pm on BBC1