Louie Velez, who portrays Sammy Davis Jr. has been captivating audiences as "Mr. Entertainment" since he began his tribute back in New York. He remembers watching Sammy on TV, and trying to imitate him while viewing the "Ed Sullivan Show".
In 1992, the City of Las Vegas invited Louie to pay tribute to Sammy at the Dedication Ceremony of the Sammy Davis Jr. P1aza with Sammys entire family in attendance. Sammys sister made comment to Louie after his performance that he brought back beautiful memories of Sammy to a mother, a sister, a daughter a son, a niece and many, many friends with his moving tribute to their loved one, Sammy Davis Jr.
He had them all in tears while he was performing, and after he completed his performance, he left the stage to give Mrs. Elvera Davis, Sammys mom a kiss and said, "Thank you for giving us Sammy". Mrs. Davis better know as Baby Sanchez, advised Louie that Sammy was of Puerto Rican decent as he, which made Louie feel even more honored and closer to Sammy. Even the late George Kirby, a great comedienne and close friend of Sammy was back stage during Louies tribute, sobbing, and saying, "Hes .the man, hes the man".
Louie has been portraying Sammy for several years, and has appeared with such stars as Debbie Reynolds, Jermaine Jackson, Marty Allen, Kenny Rogers, Phyllis McGuire, Steve Rossi, Rich Little, Louie Anderson, Rip Taylor, the original Drifters, just to name a few. Prior to his days as Sammy, he opened in an Upstate New York summer theater prior to Tom Jones and Tony Orlando. Louie has appeared in every major hotel on the strip in Las Vegas, as well as downtown Las Vegas. He also greeted guests with Nevadas Governor Bob Miller at his Inaugural Ball.
Louie has appeared on such shows as Jay Lenos Tonight Show, the 1996 Miss Universe
Pageant, opened at tile MGM Grand Gardens for the original Four Tops at the 11995 New Years Party, 1995 Victor Awards at the Las Vegas Hilton. Being a part of the Legends In Concert family for several years, appearing mainly at the Imperial Palace in Las Vegas, as well as several months at Ballys Park Place in Atlantic City and other major cities.
Velez has recently completed taking part in a motion picture, "Road to Graceland" with Bridget Fonda, Harvey Keitel and Jonathan Scheck where he portrays a Sammy Davis Jr. impersonator. Priscilla Presley is the Executive Producer of the movie, which was filmed in Mississippi and Tennessee and will be released in 1998. Prior to the role he was also appeared in a film entitled "Dream For An Insomniac", as well as several commercials and print ads for magazines and newspapers.
It has been said that no one captivates the one and only "Sammy", but when Louie presented him with the key to the City of Amsterdam, New York, even Sammy had a double take at Velez. Many try to duplicate Louies unique tribute to late, great Sammy, but no one can hit those highs and present themselves as we11 as the number one Sammy Davis Jr. impersonator in the world, as Louie Velez. Sammy Davis Jr. would be proud, and is in Louies heart with each and every performance. Louie wears a pendent of
"Mr. Bojangles" for each performance that was presented to him by a close friend of Sammys. The powerful range in Velezs voice has enhanced his performance like other, as you will observe once you have seen this tremendous entertainer perform his tribute to "Sammy Davis Jr."