samedi 19 septembre 2015

Interview with Peter aka Marga of Luv' Unlimited

Back In Luv'

In the 2000s, before Luv's last comeback (see Chapter X of the group's bio), a lookalike act called "Luv' Unlimited" paid tribute to Holland's greatest girl group. They toured the gay and "Après Ski" circuits in the Netherlands and even performed at Luv's very first fan club day in Breda in 2003 (José Hoebee and Ria Thielsch attended this event). They released a Luv' medley and appeared on RTL 5's talk show "Nachtsuite".

Six years ago, they disbanded. Due to the release of the photo book "The Story of Luv" earlier this year, Luv' Unlimited have decided to reunite. They have planned several shows.

Recently, I became a Facebook friend of Peter Broos (who plays "Marga" in the trio). Because I was interested in his career, I decided to interview him. And you know what? He kindly accepted to answer my questions.....

Ralph: How did you start the Luv' Unlimited project?

Marga: It started approximately 13 years ago. A friend called me in panic and told me that he didn't have an act for a party scheduled in a dance hall in Rotterdam. He was the manager there. I asked: "how much will it cost?". He replied: "money is not a problem". He gave me his business card and said: "tell me if you know someone". I answered: "you can print your flyers with a text that says that "Luv' are going to reunite and will give an one-off performance". No sooner said than done. The flyers were printed and the day of the party was approaching. My friend told me that a red carpet would be ready and that a limo was hired. Little did he know about my intentions. I had been rehearsing with two mates for a while and we wanted to perform as Luv' in drag. It was a perfect opportunity to launch Luv' Unlimited. After hours of shopping and learning the famous routines, we were ready to rock the stage.

I remember that our first show took place on a warm summer night and a friend (who was make-up artist) was in charge of our look and changed us into women. Then we entered the limo and went to the dance hall. When we arrived, we saw photographers who shot us. Unfortunately I never saw these pictures.

A couple of tall bodyguards led us to our dressing room. We felt like stars. We were announced as "Luv" and we made a flamboyant entrance on stage. The audience was great and we enjoyed the show. After our performance, a man came to us and asked: "Ladies, do you want drink Champagne?". Back then, we had soft voices and this man didn't realize that we were men.

Ralph: No! Really?

Marga: Yes. As we were drinking Champagne, the man asked: "ladies, can you come to my office on Monday?". We said: "It's OK but actually we are not ladies".

Ralph: Didn't he realize you were not Patty, José and Marga?

Marga: Of course, he knew we were not Luv' but we radiated self-confidence and optimism during the show. He saw us as Luv' lookalikes. So we met him in his office. What started as a joke was getting more and more serious, even though we had real jobs. We were asked if we wanted to sign a contract. If we accepted, two shows would be scheduled for the next weekend. So all of sudden there was a Luv' lookalike act. We were not allowed to use "Luv" as our stage name so we chose "Luv' Unlimited".

Ralph: What was the best or the biggest performance of Luv' Unlimited?

Marga: The biggest show took place in Hoorn. Ten bodyguards accompanied us and took us to the stage. We performed for an audience of 6000. But the greatest performance was when we appeared on RTL 5's program "De Nachtsuite" even though a TV show is a less impressive and a much more hectic experience. It's better to perform in front of a real public than a camera team. 

Ralph: Who were the other members of Luv' Unlimited?

Marga: At the time, Jan Peter was José and Wil was Patty. In the meantime, our José left the group because of her private life. Unfortunately we don't see her anymore. Jan Peter was replaced by GertI was Marga. With our talent agency things were serious. Flyers were printed and we put on a real Luv' show.

Ralph: When did you meet the real Luv' ladies? What was their reaction?

Marga: We first met them at a meet 'n greet afternoon in Breda in April 2003. At the time, Patty Brard was not on speaking terms with the ladies and Marga Scheide could not come because of the death of her partner, record producer Jacques Zwart. We were more nervous even though we had already performed for 6000 people or on TV. José Hoebee and Ria Thielsch congratulated us on our synchronized routines. They said we were flamboyant and noticed that we enjoyed what we did.

Back then, we performed twice or three times a weekend. 

Ralph: Did you keep your real jobs?

Marga: Yes we did. I worked in the catering industry. Our José worked at AH (Dutch chain of supermarkets) and our Patty at Zara.

Ralph: Did you have tensions in the group like the real Luv'?

Marga: No, not really. Sometimes we were a bit angry about the costumes we wanted to wear. For example, when José was furious and left, it didn't last too long. 30 minutes later, she always came back to us.

Ralph: What are your favourite Luv' tracks?

Marga: "My Number One", "Trojan Horse", "Life Is On My Side", "You're the Greatest Lover" and "Ooh, Yes I Do" (that we remixed from English to Spanish). We adapted 22 songs for our show! Sometimes, we also performed lesser-known tracks like "Don't Let Me Down", "I.M.U.R" and "Eveyrbody's Shaking Hands On Broadway"

Ralph: How long did a Luv' Unlimited performance last? 

Marga: 25 minutes approximately.

Ralph: Did you perform outside the Netherlands?

Marga: Once we did a show in Germany.

Ralph: When and how did you stop the group?

Marga: Because our Patty had a relationship, we stopped for a while. But rapidly we started again. We toured the "Après ski" circuit and we promoted our own single. We worked with a new agency which promised the world. We were trapped because our performances were not well planned. Finally after a show, we heard that José could not cope with the pressure and wanted to stop.

Ralph: When did the break-up happen?

Marga: Approximately six years ago. 

Ralph: Why did you decide to make a comeback with Luv' Unlimited?

Marga: When the Luv' photo book came out, we wanted to reunite. By the way, several people recognized us at the release party. Even if we briefly appear in the book, we're so proud. 

Ralph: How do you consider the future of Luv' Unlimited?

Marga: A bright future. We'd like to tour the country with our Back In Luv' show. We hope to work with a good talent agency which believes in us. Who knows what will happen? All we want is that people remember the good times with Luv'

Many THANKS to Peter/Marga for making this interview possible!!!


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