JLA in the Press

Cut-price celebs Zoom in for virtual Christmas parties
Posted on November 15, 2020

The duty mixed with drunkenness of the office Christmas party is bad enough. Joining the fun this year by video call makes the prospect even worse.

But what if Jimmy Carr hosted the quiz, Patsy Palmer was the DJ and Michel Roux cooked?

After a tough year for entertainment, celebrities are flogging their services for festive events, and charging as little as £200. Themes include comedy nights, quizzes, gin tasting and cooking skills.

JLA, which in pre-Covid times specialised in supplying speakers, has been testing people on its list to find out who has a knack for virtual entertaining.

Events held online were going to be “fantastically less expensive”, said Jeremy Lee, the agency’s director. “Companies don’t have to hire somewhere in Park Lane or a fancy hotel somewhere, and they don’t have to pay for dinner.”

So far Jimmy Carr and fellow comedian Al Murray, the pub landlord, have been confirmed.

If a quiz is too tame, Russell Kane is offering a stand-up comedy night, tailored to guests’ interests. The event is not without the usual element of risk as members of the virtual front row may be picked on.

JLA said prices would range from £2,500 for a lesser celebrity to £30,000 for a household name. In the basic option, the star calls in from home, whereas more expensive events will be broadcast from a studio.

Michel Roux, the two-star Michelin chef, will run a Christmas roast session — although guests will not be able to taste the results. Personal trainer Joe Wicks is available through JLA for group fitness sessions.

Original article appears here

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