Richmond man offers security to top Chinese acts
By Michelle Hopkins, Richmond News December 24, 2010
Michael Lok, (centre, white tie), has been providing security to celebrities for a decade, such as Raymond Lam, (left). Among them is Jay Chou, a singing sensation that performed at Rogers Arena yesterday. Photograph by: submitted, for Richmond News
|Michael Lok (right) and the Chinese superstar Jay Chou (left)
You may not know Jay Chou, but in Asian circles he is a superstar.
The Chinese singing sensation is often referred to as the "Asian" Michael Jackson.
While Chou is in Richmond, the people responsible for keeping his swooning female fans at a safe distance is Michael Lok and 100 of his past and present students from Lok's Hapkido School.
Last night, Chou was in town for his Vancouver Rogers Arena concert, part of his North American tour.
When big name Asian stars come into town, Richmond's Lok's Hapkido School students often provide some of the personal security.
"You may not know Jay now, but come Jan. 14 when the Green Hornet opens, people will definitely know him," said Lok.
The movie stars Seth Rogen, Cameron Diaz and Chou as Kato, the Hornet's sidekick. The part was originally brought to life by Bruce Lee in the '60s hit television series by the same name.
For more than a decade now, Lok has been providing concert security for top Chinese performers. "Our focus is the safety and well-being of usually one or two subjects only," added Lok. "It gives my students a real-life scenario to offer our service, and the students are excited to meet popular artists from overseas."
Lok and his students often supply security detail to and from the airport, as well as to and from the hotel and any other activity a star wishes to do.
"If they want to go shopping or out for dinner, we tag along," added Lok.
For Chou, Lok was asked to make available 100 personnel for five days of round-the-clock surveillance.
"That is not uncommon, many stars ask for the same," said Lok.
Lok comes armed with a number of credentials, including Korean certified master instructor belt 7th Dan certification (the highest rank in Canada) and 1985 Canadian Heavy Weight Sparring champion. Lok is also licensed as a security guard by the B.C. Justice Institute.
"Military security guards in Korea are trained in Hapkido," he added.
Hapkido is a Korean martial art, and combines techniques from karate, aikido and judo.
Everyone involved in the security detail, including volunteers and paid staff, are insured and bonded.
In the end, Lok said in all the years he has been offering security detail, never has there been an issue of danger to either superstar or fans.
"The artists I protect are greeted with love and happiness from their fans, they don't pose a threat to the society."