Claire Voyant's Las Vegas Gossip Column



Displaying keen perception and great insight.  
She's a little bit naughty. She’s a little bit nice.  
She calls ‘em like she sees (and hears) ‘em.  
She’s...

Claire Voyant  

Note: This is a past column from July 08, 2011
You can find the current column HERE


Las Vegas - July 8, 2011


Kooky Tunes is Coming!

Jay Rogers by Michael Portantiere

We are really excited about this news! Musical conductor Keith Thompson of Jersey Boys, will bring Kooky Tunes, his critically acclaimed comedy/novelty song revue, to the Clark County Library Theater, 1401 E. Flamingo (at Maryland Parkway), on Sunday afternoon, July 24th at 2 p.m., for the Brown Bag Concert series hosted by the Performing Arts Society of Nevada. Featured in the Las Vegas premiere of Kooky Tunes is Las Vegas favorite Vicki van Tassel ("Tanya" from Mamma Mia!). Also in the cast of seasoned musical and comic performers are Greg Kata (also from Mamma Mia!), Renata Renee Micatrotto (The Lion King), and Las Vegas' own Jason Andino and Christine Hudman. New York funny man, and Thompson's long time collaborator, Jay Rogers (voted one of New York's ten funniest performers), will join in on the fun as a featured guest artist. Thompson will be on piano and will also perform some numbers from Kooky Tunes. Kooky Tunes played to sold out houses and rave reviews in cabaret and off-Broadway venues in New York between 1997 and 2004, at which time Thompson moved to Las Vegas to join the local theater community. An Original Cast album of Kooky Tunes was recorded by John Yap of London on his Jay Records Label. Billboard Magazine wrote, "This might be the first standing ovation you've offered from your living room. Kooky Tunes is a must-see!" And whom, you may ask is Jay Rogers? The New Yorker has made a couple of very brief appearances in Las Vegas. He did a guest spot in the Composers Showcase a few years ago, singing Thompson's hysterical, "Yes, This Is My Real Voice" from Kooky Tunes, and in a sneak peek in a reading of Keith's original musical comedy, Idaho! Here is a slightly condensed version of a story on Rogers that appeared on the theatermania.com site, written by Michael Portantiere. If this doesn't generate enough interest to sell out the Kooky Tunes revue at the Flamingo Library, we will be mighty surprised. If Jay Rogers isn't the funniest man in New York, he's pretty damn close. This isn't news to anyone who saw him do his stuff in his solo cabaret shows Broccoli Head, Sucker, and Yes, This Is My Real Voice, or to those who caught his turns in the Tweed Fraktured Classiks spoofs of such films as The Women, The Children's Hour, and Harriet Craig. Even if you missed all of the above, you may well have been regaled by Rogers in Howard Crabtree's supremely gay Off-Broadway extravaganzas Whoop-Dee-Doo! and When Pigs Fly. "Laughing Matters," the lovely ballad that Mark Waldrop and the late Dick Gallagher wrote for him to sing in the latter show, was covered by no less a personage than Bette Midler on her Bathhouse Betty album. Mister Rogers presented his new cabaret act Eat, Drink & Be Mary! for one memorable performance last month at the Metropolitan Room on West 22nd Street, and the great news is that he'll reprise it at that fab new club on Friday and Saturday, July 21 and 22 at 8pm. The flyer for the show features photos of a whole bunch of Marys, from Mary Todd Lincoln to Mary Pickford to Mary Tyler Moore -- but the musical selections have nothing to do with any of those ladies. According to Rogers, "The theme of the show is 'Have a good time, baby, because life don't last forever.' Lennie Watts [who runs the Metropolitan Room] asked me do a show on the Friday of Gay Pride weekend, and I thought, 'Great, I only have to do it once!' When he asked me to bring it back, I said yes -- but it's a little nerve-wracking, because we don't have a recording of the show, and I don't remember exactly what I said between the songs. So God only knows what will happen next week. I can't say!" Though Eat, Drink & Be Mary! has no official director, Rogers is indebted to Barry Kleinbort and Thommie Walsh for their input. Musical director Christopher McGovern suggested two numbers that Rogers has come to love: "The Sailor of My Dreams" from Dames at Sea, and "Old Friend" from the Gretchen Cryer-Nancy Ford musical I'm Getting My Act Together and Taking It On the Road. Speaking of old friends, the title song of the act was written by Keith Thompson, Rogers' longtime pal and colleague. Among the other selections, "I do 'Think About Your Troubles,' a Harry Nilsson song from The Point. There's a beautiful ballad called 'I Haven't Got Anything Better to Do' by the guys who wrote 'Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka-Dot Bikini.' I do 'You Took Advantage of Me' in a mini-medley with 'I'll Never Say "Never Again" Again,' which I stole from Dinah Shore. And, because we originally did the show for Gay Pride, I included 'Angels, Punks, and Raging Queens.' Gosh, I love that song." Rogers hails from Mississippi. I first met him almost 20 years ago when he was tending bar at Don't Tell Mama on West 46th Street, the site of some of his subsequent cabaret shows; he still works happy hour shifts there to make extra cash between acting gigs. Recently, he played Mignon Mullen in My Deah, John Epperson's Southern Gothic takeoff on Medea, which had a brief workshop run at the Abingdon Theatre with a cast headed by Nancy Opel and Bryan Batt. (The show is set for a full production at the Abingdon this fall.) Before that, he played Max Detweiler in two separate productions of The Sound of Music, one at the Carousel Dinner Theatre in Akron and the other at Syracuse Stage. Rogers sings "No Way to Stop It" from that show in Eat, Drink & Be Mary! and shares some anecdotes of working with all those kiddies. For example: "I loved it when the girl who was playing the smart-ass child -- what's her name, Marta? -- came up to me after the first reading in Syracuse and said, 'You're perfect for this part. You just scream Uncle Max!' I thought, 'Well, I've been given the okay by a ten-year-old theater hag. I've got it made.' I was also happy that I had all the children calling each other 'Mary' and saying 'Oh Mary, please!' I don't think their parents loved it, but I felt it was my job." He seems to have a knack for that sort of thing. "When we did a talkback at My Deah," Rogers relates, "this guy said to me, 'I saw you in Whoop-Dee-Doo! and you had such an effect on me that I was finally able to come out.' My first reaction was, 'Are you kidding?' I couldn't believe I had so much influence over someone when I was dressed as a banana. But he said it gave him the courage to tell his folks he was gay and live the kind of life he wanted to lead. I thought, 'Well, that's really something.'"

Admission is $15 per person. For tickets to Keith Thompson's Kooky Tunes in Concert, call (702) 658-6741 or reserve online at PASNV@aol.com. Don't wait on this one, lest you be shut out.

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We are saddened to report that Carluccio's Tivoli Garden's restaurant, located on East Tropicana, next door to what used to be the site of the Liberace Museum, served their last meal last Sunday night. We learned on Sunday afternoon, from owner John Hosier, that the place was closing that very night. Years ago, the establishment was called Liberace's Tivoli Gardens, and was created by Mr. Showmanship himself. Liberace owned the restaurant until his death in 1987. The restaurant sat empty for nearly a year until the Carluccio family purchased it. Hosier has owned the place for the last 12 years. The space had all the camp and kitsch from its original owner, complete with his piano bar, mirrored dining room, and chandeliers. Many of the staff members had been at the Italian eatery for two decades. Based on many unexplainable incidents that occurred there, former employees believe that the restaurant played host to the ghost of Liberace over the years since his death. We feel that the end of Carluccio's can partly be blamed on the state of the current economy, but really is the result of the closing of the museum last October, thanks to a handful of greedy, unreasonable individuals, who cared nothing about Liberace or his rich history as an entertainer and businessman, but only what they could get out of it for themselves. Since the museum closed, the Liberace Plaza has become pretty much of a ghost center, with only a few businesses - Goodtimes bar, a Mediterranean market and a hookah lounge - still hanging in there. What a sad ending to something that showed so much promise and should have survived for many, many more years...if it had been run properly


Carluccio's Has Closed

Vince Cardell

The good news is, for fans of Carluccio's (we love their Chicken Marsala, and the Tiramisu is yummy), they are operating a west Las Vegas dining place out of the Bounty Hunter at 10170 West Tropicana #141, at Hualapai. Carluccio's on West Tropicana is open seven days a week, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Call (702) 889-2130. According to Mr. Hosier, there are plans to open a similar operation inside another bar in the Target Center at South Eastern and Silverado Ranch Blvd. We will keep you posted.

And, while still on the subject of Liberace...
We are always (well, most of the time, anyway) happy to hear from our readers. We are most happy if they are seeking an answer to a question that we are able to answer. Luckily, after spending a few hours playing detective, we have come up with an answer for reader T.W. in California, who e-mailed...
I am trying to locate Vince Cardell. Do you know if he still performs anywhere. My father is 87 years old and is a big fan. We used to see (Cardell) in Vegas and (my father) always asks me to try and find out if he is still performing . Hope you can help. Thanks.

Yes, T., we can help.

Vince Cardell, a Liberace protégé, often appeared onstage with the star, wearing a matching outfit and playing a matching mirror-covered piano. Vince continued to perform after his mentors death. We have learned that beginning in 1994, and for almost eight years, Cardell was a regular performer in the Cascades showroom at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville. During those years, thousands of guests passed through the room daily, and approximately 3,000 of them viewed the show nightly. While at Opryland, Cardell recorded three albums, the newest of which is Vince Cardell: Cascades Country Live. These days, calling himself semi-retired, because he enjoys playing and wants to keep his chops up, Vince can often be found at the keyboard at Nashville's premiere Italian restaurant, Valentino's at 1907 West End Avenue. Call (615) 327-0148 for more information. Thanks to Mr. Cardell's manager, the personable Sharon Dennis, president of Marv Dennis & Associates in Nashville, who provided the bio, the update and the photo. If Ms. W's daddy is interested, Vince's recordings can be purchased through Sharon@Dennis.com.

In addition to Vince Cardell, some of the other talented folks who benefited from the help of Liberace early in their careers are Barbra Streisand, Andrea McArdle (Annie), Barclay Shaw (puppeteer/magician), Denise Clemente, and Domenick Allen, among others.

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We are a big fan of uber-talented pop artist, Martin Kreloff. In addition to his outstanding creative abilities, Marty is one terrific fellow. We have seen many examples of his work, both in print (check out his Web site and the tribute to him in the coffee table book, America at Home: A Close-Up Look at How We Live, put together by Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt), and in person - in last years exhibit at the Laura Henkel Fine Art Gallery inside the Arts Factory, the recent showing at the Winchester Cultural Center Gallery, and in his Las Vegas home. Up until now, we have never seen a bad work by Mr. Kreloff. His latest work , though, is really bad. Over the years, Kreloff's recognized icon portrait subjects have included everyone from Marilyn Monroe, Cary Grant, Mae West, Elizabeth Taylor, George Clooney, Janet Leigh, Don Knotts, Ethel Merman, Don Johnson, Estelle Getty, Joan Crawford and Shirley Temple, to Mr. Blackwell, Golda Meir and the Las Vegas Deuce Bus. This time, Kreloff has chosen a really bad subject to portray - actress Patty McCormack as "Rhoda Penmark" from the 1956 film, The Bad Seed. Was there ever a more evil child than Rhoda?

Before moving to Las Vegas about eight years ago, Martin lived in New York, Florida and Los Angeles. Although he has been recognized locally through his poster for the Las Vegas Jewish Film Festival; his portrait of County Commission candidate David Parks; and his soon to be installed banners to designate the Cultural Corridor, we feel that Marty hasn't yet gotten the attention he deserves from this city. Perhaps a Kreloff portrait of our past (as of Tuesday) mayor, Oscar Goodman, would help put the artist on the Southern Nevada map.


Martin Kreloff's The Bad Seed

Mark Nadler

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The Monday, July 18th, meeting of the Las Vegas Media Group will be held at the historic Railroad Pass Casino, the oldest existing hotel in the country. There will be a 20 to 30 minute presentation on the history of the Railroad Pass Casino, followed by a special tour of the Heritage Room Museum. On August 1st, the Railroad Pass Casino will celebrate its 80th anniversary. Everybody in attendance at the luncheon will receive a special commemorative gift to mark the occasion. It should be a fun and fascinating meeting. Lunch will take place in the Conductor's Room (opened on a Monday afternoon, just for this group). Cost is $16 per person (that includes a $1 gratuity for the server). The Railroad Pass is located at 2800 S. Boulder Highway in Henderson. RSVPs are mandatory for this event. Please e-mail Lisa at gioiaacres1988@gmail.com. We will have more details, including the names of the speakers, in next Friday's column.

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If this was happening closer to home, we would definitely be there. For you folks who live in the Philadelphia area, on Sunday, July 10th, at The Mann Center for the Performing Arts, 5201 Parkside Avenue in beautiful Fairmount Park, you have an opportunity to see Three Singular Sensations - Martin Short, Brian Stokes Mitchell and Marvin Hamlisch - PLUS, special guest, Mark Nadler. Hamlisch will be conducting the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. This night of music and comedy is sure to be a highlight of the Mann's summer season. Three sensations from the worlds of Broadway, television, and film join together for a special evening created by Hamlisch especially for the Mann. Martin Short rose to stardom as a cast member of Saturday Night Live, then joined fellow SNL alumni Steve Martin and Chevy Chase in his big screen debut, Three Amigos. Martin's stage productions include Little Me, for which he earned a Tony Award for 'Best Actor,' and Mel Brooks' The Producers. Marvin Hamlisch is one of the greatest pops artists and conductors of our time. Winner of three Oscar awards, four Grammy awards, three Emmy awards, a Tony Award, three Golden Globe awards and the Pulitzer Prize, some of Hamlisch's most notable works include A Chorus Line and The Way We Were. Dubbed "The Last Leading Man on Broadway" by the New York Times, Tony-Award-winner, Brian Stokes Mitchell, starred in John Williams' Jazz version of My Fair Lady at Tanglewood, and headlined the Carnegie Hall concert presentation of Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific with Reba McEntire, which aired on PBS. Mark Nadler, who songwriter Ervin Drake ("Good Morning Heartache," "I Believe," "It Was a Very Good Year") calls "the most talented man on the planet"), returns to the Mann after last season's premier with the New York Pops. Demand for the pianist, singer, dancers concerts stretch across the globe each year and the Mann is thrilled to have him back. Hamlisch, Mitchell and Nadler, plus The Producers, have all played in Las Vegas. Tickets for the all ages show are $75.00, $49.00, $29.00, $19.00 (lawn). Doors open at 6 p.m., and performance begins at 8. Order tickets online at manncenter.org, ticketphiladelphia.org, or ticketmaster.com, available when the box office opens. Order by phone at (215) 893-1999 or (800) 745-3000. Service charges and per order fees apply to all phone purchases. Visit the Mann Center box office, during the season from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and on show nights until 8:30 p.m. There are no handling fees charged for box office purchases.

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Canal Street at The Orleans

Michelle Johnson & John Wedemeyer by Arnold Gray

We have had a busy, busy week. On Sunday night, we had dinner at Canal Street in The Orleans. If you have never been there, we recommend the fine restaurant. On Tuesday evening, we saw Michelle Johnson's one person show, An Independent Woman, in the Ovation Room at Green Valley Ranch. Michelle, who portrays "Sister Mary Hubert" in Nunsense at the Las Vegas Hilton, paid homage (mostly) to the Great American Songbook in this performance. Backed by nine terrific musicians - Piano/MD, Dan Ellis (Nunsense, Las Vegas Classic Jazz Band); Bass, Jeff Davis (Dick Feeney's The Rat Pack Is Back!); Drums, Earl Campbell (Sheena Easton, Patty Janura Band); Guitar, John Wedemeyer (Clint Holmes, Patty Janura Band); Alto, Andrew Friedlander (Matt Goss); Tenor, Steve Johnson (Lena Prima); Trombone, Jason Holcolmb (Matt Goss); Baritone, Adam Hoffman and Trumpet, Bill King (Sandy Hackett's Rat Pack) - Michelle delivered familiar favorites such as "Night & Day," "My Favorite Things" (with some clever new lyrics), "Love For Sale," "The Lady Is a Tramp," "I've Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)," "Peel Me a Grape," "Ain't Misbehavin'" (joined by Clint Holmes), "Blues In the Night," "God Bless America," "La Vie en Rose" with Wedemeyer accompanying, and "They Can't Take That Away From Me," along with a couple of well-received somewhat obscure tunes, "My Attorney, Bernie," and "I'm Becoming My Mother. Ms. Johnson opened and closed her show with Charlie Chaplin's "Smile." Among those in the Ovation Room audience, we spotted Elisa Furr, Renee Hale, Clint and Kelly Clinton Holmes, Evan and Sandy Davis, Karen Merstik-Michaels (Dangerous Curves), Bill Fayne, Nancy Gregory (Nunsense), Jerry Jones (Fifth Avenue), Joni and Tom Illi, Skye Dee Miles (Menopause the Musical), and Jazz Junkie Katrina Sumner.

After Michelle's show, we headed across the city to the Suncoast for a two night "staycation." We wanted to be on that side of Las Vegas so we could attend the Composers Showcase at Garfield's on Wednesday night. The showcase, as usual, featured some amazing songs and performances, with highlights including Kelly Clinton Holmes' very funny "PMS Blues" (this lady needs her own show); Keith Thompson's "The Wall," from God Lives In Glass, featuring Joan Sobel, Bruce Ewing, Philip Fortenberry, Moonlight Tran and Rebecca Ramsey; Tim Searcy, backed up by Tish Diaz plus eight; Clint Holmes and newcomer Tymara Smith singing Clint's "You Have To Go Through Hell to Get to Heaven" and his poignant song on aging. We wish we had the time and space to acknowledge all the incredible talent that makes these showcases so special. There was a full house at the Desert Shores establishment. Among the attendees (some who were performing) were Jeff and Julie Neiman, Jeanne Bavaro, Bill Fayne, Joni Illi, Nancy Gregory, Carole Hassell, Christine Hudman, Wayne Green, Don Cadette, Michael Kessler and Melinda Jackson, Michelle Johnson, Dan Ellis, Mike Clark, Scott Watanabe, Kristen Hertzenberg, Jason Andino, Ronnie Rose, JoAnn Toranto, Evan and Sandy Davis, Richard Oberacker, Will and Jolana Adamson, Michael Sharon, Nicole Pryor, Fred Crescente, Tina Walsh and many, many others. The two things to be critical of regarding the most recent showcase, was the high temperatures and humidity (Garfield's Restaurant has NO air conditioning. This is Southern Nevada. This is the desert. Fans and misters just don't cut it, especially with 150 people in an "intimate" space.) and the sound situation. When it comes to new, unfamiliar songs, you want to be able to hear all the lyrics, especially since most of the wonderful material introduced at the Composers Showcase, tell stories. In spite of these problems, the showcase is one of the most exciting things that happens in our city, so we bite the bullet and fan ourselves with whatever is handy.


Christine Hudman

And speaking of Nunsense, on Wednesday evening, there will be a little goodbye party for the show's original Mother Superior, Diane Ellis, who is returning to Boston after 32 years in Las Vegas. The farewell gathering will take place at Ichabod's, 3300 East Flamingo # 15, in the Food 4 Less strip mall, near Pecos in Renaissance Center III. Expect music, laughs and some tears. It's tough having a longtime friend moving so far away.

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As the temperatures creep up in July, plan on cooling down at Spring Mountain Ranch State Park. Super Summer Theatre's season continues, July 13th through 30th, Wednesdays through Saturdays, with The Drowsy Chaperone. The Drowsy Chaperone will transport you to a magical world: a world where the critics are in awe, the audiences are in heaven and the neighborhood is buzzing with excitement. Earning the most 2006 Tony Awards of any musical on Broadway, The Drowsy Chaperone is a comical story-within-a-story that begins when a die-hard musical theater fan plays his favorite cast album, a 1928 smash hit called The Drowsy Chaperone, and the show magically bursts to life. Audiences are instantly immersed in the glamorous, hilarious tale of a celebrity bride and her uproarious wedding day, complete with thrills and surprises that take both the cast (literally) and the audience (metaphorically) soaring into the rafters. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the gate. Kids 5 and under are free. Tickets may be purchased in person at UNLV's Ham Hall box office or Prestige Travel, in the Von's shopping center at Lake Mead and Buffalo, or by calling (702) 895-ARTS (2787), or (702) 256-5441. Tickets are sold on a first come, first served basis. These programs are popular, so act quickly. For more information about Super Summer Theatre, directions, and other upcoming productions, visit supersummertheatre.org. Parking at the Ranch opens at 5 p.m., and the Meadow opens at 6 p.m., Showtime is at 8 p.m. Take your dinner, a blanket and a sweater or jacket (yes, it can get really chilly out there when the sun goes down) and enjoy the experience.

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Reminders...
Entertainer Connie Stevens and her special guest, comic impressionist John Byner, are in the new Starlite Theatre at the Riviera Hotel, through July 17th (dark on Mondays and Tuesdays). Shows are at 7:30 p.m. Tickets starts at $39.95 plus taxes and fees. Locals, with proper ID, can save 50%. For reservations, call (702) 794-9433, or go to RivieraHotel.com.


John Byner

Nancy Gregory & Annie Gaybis Byner

And speaking of John Byner, his talented wife Annie Gaybis is a member of SHARE, a Los Angeles-based organization that raises money for a number of Southern California children's charities. SHARE's big annual fundraiser is called Boomtown, a production show featuring the hard-working members of the group. Nancy Gregory, the producer of Nunsense at the Las Vegas Hilton, is also a SHARE member. For 57 years, Boomtown has been SHARE's primary fundraising event. Held in the spring, the western-themed Boomtown party has a live and silent auction, dinner, and a fabulous show that includes performances by the SHARE ladies and celebrity entertainers. Performances by Michael Feinstein and The Ladies Of Share. Shining Spirit Award honoring Sara Gilbert highlighted the latest event. Attached is a photo of Annie Gaybis Byner and Nancy Gregory taken by Christine McDowell at the Boomtown 2011 shindig held on May 14th.

It's Sammy Shore's Legends of Comedy, starring Sammy Shore, "The Man Who Made Elvis Laugh," with guests Bobby Slayton, "The Pitbull of Comedy;" and comedy magician, Fielding West, in Marilyn's Lounge at the Eastside Cannery, tonight and tomorrow night (Friday, July 8th and Saturday the 9th) at 8 p.m. There is no charge for admission (adults only, of course). Needless to say, if you want to see this show, get there early.

At The Orleans, Norm Macdonald headlines this weekend, with shows at 8 p.m., tonight and tomorrow. Tickets start at $24.95, plus taxes and fees. Call (702) 365-7075 for reservations, or show up at the hotel box office and hope there are still seats available. (Last weekend's shows for Bill Maher were pretty much sold out.) Poor Norm. In most of the local promotion for the comic, his last name has been misspelled. In just two sentences, Friday's Las Vegas Sun section had the name spelled two different ways...BOTH wrong!

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Fielding West & Bob the Bird

Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is the offering at the Las Vegas Little Theatre, July 15th through 31st. Based on the popular 1988 film, written by Dale Launer, Stanley Shapiro and Paul Henning, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels centers on two con men living on the French Riviera. The first is the suave and sophisticated "Lawrence Jameson," who makes his lavish living by talking rich ladies out of their money. The other, a small-time crook named "Freddy Benson," more humbly swindles women by waking their compassion with fabricated stories about his grandmother's failing health. After meeting on a train, the twosome unsuccessfully attempt to work together only to find that this small French town isn't big enough for the both of them. They agree on a settlement: the first one to extract $50,000 from a young female target, heiress "Christine Colgate," wins and the other must leave town. A hilarious battle of cons ensues, that will keep audiences laughing, humming and guessing to the end! Music and lyrics are by David Yazbek, and the book is by Jeffrey Lane. The Las Vegas Little Theatre production is directed by Walter Niejadlik, with musical direction by Toby McEvoy and choreography by Sarah Spraker. Brian Scott, Mario Mendez, Tony Blosser, Kim Glover, Penni Mendez and Denda Brink head up the cast. The ensemble is made up of David Ament, Edith Wiggins, Ryan Bobbett, Stephanie Claydon, Robert Stamper, Lyn Meers, Mike Pemberton, Catherine Ostertag, Scott Caster, Dacy Overby and Arianna Miner. Stage manager/assistant director is Gillen Brey. Costumes are by Penni Mendez, set design by David Sankuer, lighting design by Ginny Adams and technical director is Ron Lindblom. Tickets are $25 ($20 for LVLT Season Ticket Holders). Performances are Thursdays, July 21st and 28th; Fridays, July 15th, 22nd and 29th; and Saturdays, July 16th, 23rd, and 30th, all at 8 p.m. On Sundays, July 17th, 24th and 31st, shows are at 2 p.m. The Las Vegas Little Theatre is located at 3920 Schiff Drive, near Spring Mountain and Valley View. LVLT is funded in part by a grant from the Nevada Arts Council, a division of the Dept. of Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

Nominated for eleven Tony Awards, the original Broadway production of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels was choreographed by Jerry Mitchell (Peepshow, Las Vegas). Last September, Brent Barrett, our Phavorite Phantom, portrayed "Lawrence Jameson" in the Massachusetts North Shore Music Theatre's version.

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Jim Morrison

The Kid Fiddlers

It's hard to believe that July 3rd marked the 40th anniversary of the death of Jim Morrison. Morrison was lead singer and lyricist of the rock band The Doors. He was also considered a poet. His trademark was the fact that he would often improvise poem passages while the band played live. Morrison was ranked No. 47 on Rolling Stone's "100 Greatest Singers of All Time," list, and is widely regarded, with his wild personality and performances, as one of the most iconic, charismatic and pioneering frontmen in rock music history. Morrison died on July 3, 1971. He was only 27 when he was found dead in a Paris apartment bathtub. No autopsy was performed because the medical examiner claimed to have found no evidence of foul play. The absence of an official autopsy has left many unanswered questions. If he had lived, Jim Morrison would have been 67 years old.

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The Starbright Theatre in Sun City Summerlin, 2215 Thomas Ryan Blvd., hosts the Kid Fiddlers this Sunday, July 10th, with a show at 3 p.m. Although the five children all love to play the fiddle, Kid Fiddlers, the Jackson Family Band, do more than just "fiddle around!" They all play many instruments, sing and dance! This is a musical bonanza variety show! From county and state fairs across the country to the Roy Clark Theater in Branson, Missouri, Kid Fiddlers have amazed audiences across the United States and Europe. With almost 10 years experience, these five "kids" are becoming some of the best seasoned, professional musicians around. They will tear it up with fancy instrumentation, three-part harmony vocals, sensational clogging, charming humor, and America's favorite little yodeler, 9-year old Skyler, will bring down the house. Kid Fiddlers perform old time favorites like "Ghost Riders in the Sky," "Cowboy Sweetheart," and classics from Johnny Cash, Alabama, etc. Tickets are $10 for Sun City Summerlin residents, and $12 for non-residents. All shows at the Starbright are first come, first served with no limit on the amount of tickets purchased. Be sure to get your tickets early so you don't miss out! If an event sells out, every attempt will be made to provide additional show times, if possible. Show tickets may be purchased at Desert Vista, Mountain Shadows and Pinnacle community centers. All ticket prices include Live Entertainment Tax. Tickets are non-refundable. There is no reserved seating at the Starbright Theatre. Saving seats is not permitted. Please remember there is not a bad seat in the theatre so everyone can enjoy the performances no matter where they are seated. All ticket sales are check or cash (exact change required). No credit cards accepted. Starbright Theatre shows are open to everyone ages 12 and over. For up-to-date information on Starbright Theatre shows, call (702) 240-1301.

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Randy Soard & Faces of the Brave poster

The Pointer Sisters

Condolences to photographer Randy Soard on the death of his mother. Faye LaVerne Soard passed away on June 29th at the age of 87. Born in Lexington, Kentucky, Jan. 10, 1924, to Ben and Mollie Jacobs, she moved to Las Vegas in 1962 with her husband and four children to a long and distinguished career in medical records with Sunrise Hospital, later becoming a registrar with the Nevada Cancer Registry. She is survived by her husband, of 69 years, Raymond Soard; her children, Randy, Jane Dionisio, Suzanne Curtin, and William Soard; her grandchildren, Tracie Kimbrell, Justin Dionisio, Jenna Soard, Colin Curtin, Zachary Soard and Sydney Soard; as well as five great-grandchildren. Services were held earlier today at Shadow Hills Baptist Church. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Shadow Hills Baptist Church. Randy Soard is probably best known for his photograph, Faces of the Brave, a Photo-Mosaic comprised of the individual portraits of each of the fallen Heroes lost on September 11th, 2001. Many of the images contained in the Faces of the Brave are from private family collections and have never been viewed by the public. Our condolences to the Soard family.

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The Pointer Sisters - Anita and Ruth Pointer, and Ruth's granddaughter, Sadako Johnson - will perform at The Orleans Showroom, Saturday, July 16th, and Sunday, the 17th. The hit- making group and Soul Train Hall of Fame members will perform their greatest hits of the '70s and '80s in The Orleans Showroom, with shows at 8 p.m. Prior to recording their first album in 1973, The Pointer Sisters honed their singing skills in their father's church, The Church of God in West Oakland, California. The self-titled debut album produced the Billboard No. 11 single, "Yes We Can, Can." Following the release of a live recording in 1974, the Sisters released a follow up studio album entitled That's A Plenty, which generated a hit song on both the Country and Pop charts, "Fairytale." This song also garnered the groups' first Grammy Award® for Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group, and was later covered by Elvis Presley. With this hit, the Sisters became the first black female group to ever perform at the Grand Ole Opry and the first contemporary act to perform at the San Francisco Opera House. Their fourth album outing, Steppin', generated the No. 1 R&B hit, "How Long (Betcha Got a Chick On The Side)," co-written by the Sisters. In 1976, the group appeared in the film Car Wash with Richard Pryor, and also released the single "You Gotta Believe" which appeared on the soundtrack for the film. The group rounded out the '70s with the release of the albums Having A Party in 1977; Energy in 1978, which included a hit version of Bruce Springsteen's "Fire" and top single "Happiness;" and Priority in 1979. The '80s brought much success for the Sisters with the release of Special Things and the hit single "He's So Shy," and Black & White and one of the biggest hit singles of the year, "Slow Hand." In 1982, So Excited was released and created the hit "I'm So Excited." The multi-platinum 1983 album Break Out, produced the most hits from one release for the Sisters, including "Automatic," a re-issue of "I'm So Excited," "Jump (For My Love)," "Baby Come and Get It," and "Neutron Dance," which was included in the Eddie Murphy film Beverly Hills Cop. The success of this album earned the Sisters two Grammy Awards® - Best Vocal by a Duo or Group for "Jump (For My Love)" and Best Vocal Arrangement for "Automatic," in addition to two American Music Awards. In 1985, the Sisters followed up with the platinum selling Contact, which produced the hit single "Dare Me," and helped the group garner an American Music Award for Best Video-Group. The 1986 release of Hot Together created a Top 40 hit "Gold Mine." Other albums include Serious Slammin', Right Rhythm and Only Sisters Can Do That. In 1987 The Pointer Sisters appeared in their first television network special, Up All Night. In 1994, the same day that the Sisters received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, it was announced that the group would begin a worldwide tour of the Fats Waller musical Ain't Misbehavin' which would take them on tour for 46 weeks and generate a cast recording. The group continues touring and has performed with some of the greatest symphony orchestras in the world. In 2004, they recorded a live CD/DVD, which includes all of the favorite hits of the legendary group. Tickets are available, starting from $29.95, plus tax and convenience fees, and can be purchased by calling the Box Office at (702) 365-7075 or visiting www.orleanscasino.com.

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Engelbert Humperdinck

Engelbert Humperdinck has locked in exclusive performances and brings his signature act to the Paris Theatre in the Paris Las Vegas Hotel, Thursday through Sunday, July 21st through 24th. "Engelbert Humperdinck is a music legend and we are delighted to welcome him to the Paris Theatre stage," said David Hoenemeyer, President of Paris Las Vegas. "He has sung some of the most romantic songs in music history and there's no better place in Las Vegas to experience romance than at The Paris. We are anxiously looking forward to his concert dates." Engelbert says, "In 1968 my dear friend, Dean Martin, asked if he could present me to Las Vegas with a performance at The Riviera. And, who says no to Dean Martin... From the moment I walked on the stage, the love affair with Las Vegas started, and now, almost 44 years later, we're still in love. Performing at The Paris Hotel is the perfect match for me, my music and my fans," confides Mr. Humperdinck" For more than four decades, the international icon has shared a legacy of love with fans of every age, on every continent. With four Grammy nominations, a Golden Globe for "Entertainer of the Year", 63 gold and 24 platinum records and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Humperdinck has joined an elite group of musical artists, such as Burt Bacharach and Tony Bennett, who have crossed over successfully to strike a new chord with a younger generation while continuing to entertain their core audience. Several of the major forces in the world of rock n' roll, including Jimi Hendrix and The Carpenters, started out as opening acts for Humperdinck in the late '60s, '70s and '80 s. He even took No.1 away from the Beatles! Boasting more than 100 million fans worldwide, 250+ fan clubs, and selling more than 130 million CDs and albums, Engelbert has recorded everything from the most romantic ballads, to the platinum-selling theme song "Lesbian Seagull" for the 1996 Beavis and Butt-Head Do America movie. His remarkable voice and extraordinary talent has endeared him to millions of fans around the globe with the MTV generation having just "discovered" what a magnificent musician the rest of the world has celebrated for decades. Building on this incomparable heritage, comes Engelbert's Released; both the title of a CD that revisits many of his timeless, beloved classics, as well as the name of his latest world tour, a romantic tour-de-force that is currently taking him from Paris (France) to Pennsylvania, Moscow to Manchester, and Vienna to the infamous Las Vegas Strip's Paris Hotel. Showtimes are at 7:30 p.m., with tickets prices ranging from $132.20 to $506.70 for box seats (LET and fees included). For reservations, call (877) 374-7469 or (702) 946-4567.



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