Most celebrity lookalikes are content to do just that - look like the famous people they are impersonating. Not so John Perrott. He bears an uncanny resemblance to opera great Luciano Pavarotti - and he is an accomplished opera singer to boot. What began as a part-time 'bit of a laugh' in London has struck the right chord since Perrott arrived in Hong Kong last October. He has performed at the Jockey Club and Hong Kong Club, and at the China Tea Club for the rugby Sevens managers. He was an instant hit among the rowdy South Bank crowd at the Sevens tournament and was the guest of honour this month at the Australia Italian Society's week-long celebrations in Ingham, Queensland. Late-night passengers on the ferry to Discovery Bay and Perrott's work mates at Chek Lap Kok, where he works as a health and safety quality assurance manager for a carpet company, are also often treated to his impromptu performances. 'I get a huge kick out of it. I'm an extrovert and its a good laugh,' he says with a twinkle in his eye. 'I take it seriously - but not too seriously.' With his generous frame, full beard and wearing his London-made wig, the resemblance to the famous Italian singer is enough to make most people do a double take. 'Their initial reaction is to have another look. Nobody has seen him except on TV, so they don't know whether TV makes him look so big. When they see someone who is relatively big, and looks similar, they really wonder,' Perrott says. That is what happened when he flew to Ingham, where 80 to 90 per cent of the population are of Italian descent. 'This chap drove by, took one look, braked, went around the corner taking another look and his car mounted the pavement and nearly hit a lamppost. Then he ran back and you could see him looking through the glass doors to see if I was for real,' says Perrott. Ingham holds an annual Italian festival and Perrott performed at the ball, was guest of honour at a Saturday street parade and sang at a Mother's Day lunch on the Sunday. He was also invited to perform during a break in the Townsville Suns home basketball match, before a crowd of almost 6,000, which was televised nationally by Channel 7. The invitation to perform in Australia followed his South Stand operatics during this year's Sevens tournament. 'I got dressed up as Pavarotti in rugby kit. I was in the South stand singing away and some Australians asked for my number. A few days later I got a call from the Australia Italian Society asking me if I'd appear at the festival.' Perrott has sung all his life, from opera in school to musical and folk societies in Germany. 'I was there for 18 years with the British forces. I worked for the Naafi - we supplied creature comforts to the forces. I later served in the Falklands - and performed for the troops while we were sailing south aboard the HMS Uganda,' he says. But it was not until a friend, who had watched a television programme in England about celebrity lookalikes, suggested Perrott give it a try that he began impersonating Pavarotti. 'At first I said 'leave off, not me', but my friend made some enquiries on my behalf and I ended up on the books of the Susan Scott agency.' Guest appearances followed in England and when his employers, Tyndale Carpets, despatched him to Hong Kong he packed his Pavarotti wig 'just for a laugh'. After a few impromptu performances - he combines humour with his opera, singing everything from opera classics to the theme song from Titanic - invitations began flowing in. 'I've got the voice but I've never been classically trained. Now I've started taking voice lessons from Derek Anthony at the Academy of Performing Arts. If you're going to sing the sort of songs that Pavarotti sings you have to know the tricks of the trade,' he says. 'I speak fluent German but I have to sing Italian songs phonetically.' Has he seen the great man perform live? 'Yes, I saw him at the London Arena. It was quite funny because I was waiting with my father outside, I had my beard and was wearing a dark suit. A coach went past and everybody saw me and seemed to think I was the man himself. They all dived over to the window and I milked it a bit, waving grandly to them as they drove past.' Perrott plans to capitalise on his new-found celebrity status, and is considering launching a Pavarotti-a-gram. 'Someone might take their wife - or whoever - out for a meal. 'Instead of a Gorilla-gram or Stripper-gram, like we have in the UK, I'd turn up dressed as Pavarotti, deliver flowers to their table and sing. 'I'm also toying with the idea of arranging medieval evenings. I'd dress up as Henry VIII - I've got the same stature - and sing and entertain while people tuck into a medieval feast. 'If things were to prove successful I'd love to do this full time. 'I'd love to make a record of my own too . . . and Hong Kong is the place where that kind of dream could happen.'