Top 10 Hilarious SNL Pop Star Impressions

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Top 10 Hilarious SNL Pop Star Impressions

VOICE OVER: Emily Brayton WRITTEN BY: Tal Fox
We'll never stop laughing at these popstar impressions on "SNL." For this list, we'll be looking at the best musical impressions on the late-night comedy sketch show but focussing on the pop genre only. Our countdown includes Ariana Grande as various, Ana Gasteyer as Celine Dion, Kristen Wiig as Björk, and more!
Transcript

Top 10 Popstar Impressions on SNL


Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Pop Star Impressions on SNL

For this list, we’ll be looking at the best musical impressions on the late-night comedy sketch show but focussing on the pop genre only.

Who’s your favorite “SNL” pop star? Let us know in the comments.

#10: Jimmy Fallon as Barry Gibb


“The Barry Gibb Talk Show” was arguably one of Fallon’s best recurring bits from his time on the show. He imagined the singer as a short-tempered talk show host who speaks in falsetto, mirroring the groups’ instantly recognizable vocals. Joined by Justin Timberlake as Robin Gibb, he would often interrupt his guests and break into song. What made this sketch so memorable was Fallon and Timberlake’s chemistry, as well as their polar opposite energies. Thanks to his hilariously exaggerated impression of the singer, this sketch became an “SNL” staple. It was so entertaining that even the real Barry Gibb wanted a piece of the action.

#9: Fred Armisen as Prince


Armisen played Prince in yet another memorable recurring talk-show skit. With Maya Rudolph’s Beyoncé by his side, this dream team ensured that their guests were always in for an unpredictable experience. As a self-professed huge Prince fan, Armisen revealed that he started imitating the pop icon in hopes of meeting him someday. His impression shows how much he admires the singer while still putting his own comedic spin on the character too. He’s certainly eccentric and still encompasses Prince’s extraordinary spirit. The voice and demeanor are pretty spot-on too. And, Armisen's dream of meeting him did eventually come true as well.

#8: Kristen Wiig as Björk


Icelandic singer Björk is possibly one of the most weirdly wonderful and wacky exports from the country. And who better to encapsulate all that than the impressions master, Kristen Wiig. She had clearly done her homework too, effortlessly nailing everything from the singer’s tone to her quirky stream of consciousness. Thanks to her brilliantly whimsical impression, Björk showed up in all sorts of sketches, from Weekend Update to a dinner date with Charles Barkley. And of course, you couldn’t have a show called “Bein’ Quirky” without Björk at least making an appearance? It’s hard to explain but this singer and comedian were a perfect fit.

#7: Melissa Villaseñor as Lady Gaga


Before joining “SNL,” Melissa was already entertaining audiences with her plethora of impressive impersonations. But we have to say that her Lady Gaga is an absolute must-see. And she was pretty insistent on sharing it with us too, as this Weekend Update segment proves. We were completely astounded by the precision with which she mimics the singer’s voice. She also had us amazed by her vocals when she hit the money note. She revisited the character during a “Family Feud” sketch and left our jaws-dropping with the uncanny accuracy of her impression. If you weren’t a Melissa Monster before, then you almost definitely were after this.

#6: Chloe Fineman as Britney Spears


Hosting a talk show called “Oops, You Did It Again!” Fineman's pop princess takes a stab at apology culture. Not only is the concept clever and very entertaining, but Chloe’s impression is outstanding as well. She has the voice, mannerisms, and intonation down to a tee and her dance moves are pretty accurate too. We love that her Britney is endearing and empowered and the impression is clearly done with the utmost respect. Fans applauded this sketch for its brilliance, as well as Chloe’s phenomenal performance. We hope that this becomes a recurring sketch or at least that they hit us with it “One More Time.”

#5: Ana Gasteyer as Celine Dion


Even though the Quebec native has never actually hosted “SNL,” Gasteyer plays her so well that you might be fooled into believing otherwise. Following the “Titanic” success of “My Heart Will Go On”, Gasteyer went all in to give us this hilariously over-the-top parody. Whether it’s her accent, inflections, or exceptional self-assuredness, her characterization is one for the ages. Playing to the singer’s undeniable likeability, it was hardly surprising that the “Celine Dion Show” ended up becoming a recurring sketch. Celine clearly thought it was hysterical too and invited her parody alter-ego to join her on stage at one of her concerts.

#4: Maya Rudolph as Beyoncé


It’s no secret that Maya can sing but her Beyoncé impression was never really about the music anyway. Rather, she imitated the singer’s confident and seemingly unflappable disposition. Mastering the power pose and with the occasional use of a wind machine, she unleashed her Sasha Fierce on several occasions. We also love how she remains cool and calm even in the most ridiculous situations. It’s no wonder that the parody took on a life of its own, even reappearing when she hosted during season 46. Encompassing Beyoncé’s larger-than-life stage presence, you might say that her takeoff of the singer is pretty “Flawless.”

#3: Vanessa Bayer as Miley Cyrus


Vanessa was just two episodes into her SNL tenure when she showcased her remarkable Miley Cyrus impersonation. Fronting “The Miley Cyrus Show”, she nailed the singer’s southern twang and slightly nasal sound, not to mention her gift of the gab. With a never-ending grin and a pretty loud voice, it seemed like Bayer was drawing on Miley’s Disney days for inspiration. Clearly, the singer was cool with it as she even engaged with the parody on two separate occasions. Bayer shared that, ahead of the singer’s hosting stint in season 39, she actually advised her on how to do a better Miley Cyrus impression.

#2: Ariana Grande as Various


Spanning a four-octave range and peaking at whistle tones, there’s a lot of talent within Grande’s petite frame. Even so, she had amazed us with her tremendous voice control as she embodied five other singers throughout this sketch. Mocking Tidal’s turbulent beginnings, it’s up to Chloe the intern to save the streaming site with her astonishing impressions. From Britney, Shakira, and Rihanna to Celine and Whitney, if you close your eyes it’s almost as if they’re on your screen too. Thanks to Chloe’s many voices, this sketch has become iconic. She just falls short with her Ariana Grande but hey, what can you do?

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Maya Rudolph as Whitney Houston
Is There Any Legendary Diva She Can’t Impersonate?

Kristen Wiig as Madonna
Wiig’s Hilariously Eccentric Madonna Takes on Angelina Jolie in a Crazy Baby Race

Kristen Wiig as Lana Del Rey
The Singer Wanted to Clear the Air about Her “SNL” Performance from Three Weeks Earlier


Dana Carvey as George Michael
Well, We Guess It Would Be Nice If Dennis Miller Just Checked Out His Butt

Andy Samberg, Kenan Thompson, Miley Cyrus, & Jay Pharoah as The Black Eyed Peas
We Can Barely Tell Them Apart from the Real Band

#1: Kate McKinnon as Justin Bieber


Encompassing one of Canada’s most famous exports, Kate proves that there’s no character out of her range. Finding a sweet spot in the singer’s everchanging image, her Bieber is not quite the cute kid from the “Baby” music video but not quite at his redemption era either. Describing her method as…, indeed, it’s the physicality of the parody that makes it so hilarious. She’s all pouts and poses while trying to prove that Justin now wears big boy pants, or Calvin Kleins to be more precise. Whether it’s on “Family Feud” or partaking in the nativity, Kate’s Justin Bieber is always a treat to watch.
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