Claire Voyant's Las Vegas Gossip Column

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

Claire Voyant  

Note: This is a past column from April 03, 2009
You can find the current column HERE

Las Vegas - April 3, 2009

Bill Nolte

Broadway Bound Fundraiser

Heee's back (but only for a moment). Bill Nolte, who portrayed the crazed German playwright, Franz Liebkind, in The Producers at Paris Las Vegas, is not just back in the city where he owns a home, but he is also returning to the stage of the Clark County Flamingo Library Theatre for a back-by-popular-demand, one-time-only performance on Monday, April 6th, at 2 p.m. In February of 2008, soon after The Producers closed, the musical veteran (Cats, Amour, Jane Eyre, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, A Christmas Carol, 1776, Secret Garden, Me and My Girl, and King David) charmed the library theater audience with his All of Me tour de force revue. Presented once again by the Performing Arts Society of Nevada (that's John Meren and Tom Gallagher), this time around, Nolte will pay tribute to the Great White Way. In On Broadway, directed by Mark Waldrop (who also directed All of Me, as well as Gypsy and Pete 'n' Keely), Bill will perform songs from top musicals, including Man of La Mancha, South Pacific, Ain't Misbehavin', Smokey Joe's Café, Cats, Finian's Rainbow, Guys and Dolls, My Fair Lady, On the Town, Jekyll & Hyde, and The Producers. Accompanied by the equally talented Joey Singer (longtime musical director for Debbie Reynolds) on piano, Nolte promises some of your all time favorites. This is the concert that Bill performed on the Seabourn Spirit in December, while cruising to Oman, Dubai and India, and will debut in New York in the fall. Lucky Las Vegans can enjoy the same experience, for much less money (only $15 a ticket) and without packing bags or getting seasick. Tickets can be purchased at the library box office, beginning at 1 p.m. the day of the performance. Call (702) 658-6741 for more information.

And speaking of Bill Nolte, he is currently (through, at least, July) in the National Tour of Fiddler on the Roof (book by Joseph Stein, music by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick), playing the butcher Lazar Wolf and covering Tevye, portrayed by Topol who also starred in the 1971 film. Here is a portion of a lengthy review by Tim Dunleavy for Talkin' Broadway. After chiding Topol (who is 73, and first played the role Tevye in London in the late 1960s) for overacting and shamelessly milking the audience, Dunleavy goes on to say, "Of course, Fiddler is far from a one-man show. Mary Stout (as the Matchmaker Yente), Bill Nolte (as the butcher Lazar Wolf) and Erik Liberman (as the nerdy tailor Motel) all have great comic delivery, and they give the show a lot of warmth." In another review, the critic wrote...Topol starred as Tevye the milkman, father of five daughters, in the 1967 London production, and reprised the role in the 1971 film. While some would fear a man of 73 would be too long in the tooth to have tween and teen daughters, Topol convinces with the energy of a much younger man. The only exception is his rendition of "If I Were a Rich Man," which is slowed to a crawl. Topol must be somewhat bored with playing Tevye, for he's adding little ad-libs here and there, always in hope of getting an extra laugh. Bill Nolte is solid as the butcher who was out for Tzeitel's hand, but was denied it. He has a long scene with Topol where he could succumb to matching the man laugh for cheap laugh, but he resists.

On March 23rd, Bill Nolte was one of a group of Broadway entertainers who re-created the New York musical theater scene in Seattle to help raise money for the Broadway Bound Children's Theatre. We are happy to report, through the executive director, Jim D'Asaro, that Broadway Comes to Broadway Bound, was a great success, raising more than $ 25,000 for the organization. The young artists were treated to a first hand and personal look at seven of Broadway's brightest stars - Anne Allgood, Brent Barrett, Jerry Dixon, John Treacy Egan, Philip Fortenberry, Rebecca Spencer and Nolte. They also had the opportunity to work side-by-side with them and engage in a lively talkback session prior to their wonderful performance together.

Left to right in the accompanying photo: John Treacy Egan, Brent Barrett, Rebecca Spencer, Philip Fortenberry, Bill Nolte, Anne Allgood, Jerry Dixon, Jimmy Nixon (Executive Artistic Director) and Jim D'Asaro.

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On Sunday evening (April 5th), from 6 to 7ish p.m., RNI Productions Cabaret Workshop will present An Evening of New York-style Cabaret at Don't Tell Mama, under the direction of multiple MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs) Award-winners, Lina Koutrakas and Rick Jensen. The approximately one-hour show will feature Jeanne Brei (from The Speakeasy Swingers), Elly Brown (from Jubilee!), Karen Merstik-Michaels (from Dangerous Curves), Dennis Michaels, Michael Miyazki (cabaret artist from Washington, D.C., and writer for Cabaret Scenes magazine), Justin Olsen (from SwingBeat Entertainment), Ron Squeri (from Washington, D.C. cabaret), and Scott Watanabe (from Phantom - The Las Vegas Spectacular), who all took the three-day class. Don't Tell Mama Las Vegas (there is also a Don't Tell Mama in Manhattan) is located downtown at 517 E. Fremont Street (a half block east of Neonopolis and Las Vegas Blvd.). For this special event, there is a $15 cover, no minimum. Auditing slots are still available for Saturday's workshop from 2 to 5 p.m. at Fern Adair Studios. The cost is $50. Call (314) 359-0786 to register or pay at the door.

Elly Brown

Scott Watanabe

David Pomeranz & Chadleen Lacdo-o

Sunday night's "showcase" at Don't Tell Mama, culminates the three-day Cabaret Intensive, professional development workshop held at Fern Adair Studios in Las Vegas, focusing on the art of song performance. In addition to Lina Koutrakos and Rick Jensen, Tim Schall, is producer for the event. Between them, the teaching team of Koutrakos and Jensen are the recipients of nine MAC Awards, honoring excellence in New York cabaret, in addition to two Backstage Bistro Awards, a Village Voice Award, a LAMBDA Award and France's Le Petit Piaf Award. They have been teaching ongoing advanced performance workshops in Manhattan for more than a decade, and have guided countless performers through the creation of solo cabaret shows. Both have served on the faculty of the Cabaret Conference at Yale University, The Eugene O'Neill Cabaret Symposium, The St. Louis Cabaret Conference and together have taught three day performance intensives in Chicago, Boston, Santa Fe and Washington, DC. Jensen is one of New York's most sought after musical director/arrangers and Koutrakos added two more MAC awards to her credit in 2007, as Best Major Female Artist and Best Director. Both are dynamic performers, teachers, songwriters and recording artists who have worked in nearly every cabaret room in New York. The core of the three-day workshop focuses on performance coaching, facilitated by Koutrakos as director/performance coach and Jensen as music director/coach. Singers prepare at least five songs that are memorized and ready to work. Participants receive individualized feedback on their performance in the following areas: connection to material, physical choices, song selection, interpretation, arrangements, audience connection and internal/external focus of song. Other topics covered include constructing a show, working with your musical director, the importance of the arrangement and developing patter. The weekend culminates with the participants' showcase at Don't Tell Mama on Sunday evening. There will also be a Faculty Performance on Saturday evening April 4th featuring Koutrakos and Jensen. Both evenings are open to the public. Cost for the workshop is $650, and includes one ticket to Saturday's performance. For further information, please contact Tim Schall at (314) 721-4634, e-mail him at [email protected], or check out

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The oh so talented David Pomeranz has been appointed as Celebrity Ambassador for Operation Smile. Founded in 1982 by plastic surgeon, Dr. Bill Magee and his wife Kathy, Operation Smile volunteers have treated more than 130,000 children around the world, and more than 21,000 in the Philippines, who are victims of facial deformities. On February 27th, 28th and March 1st, David performed three highly-successful fundraising concerts in the Philippines (in Manila, Cebu and Davao) to benefit Operation Smile. The concerts were timed in conjunction with the annual "mission" of Surgeons, Nurses, Assistants and Volunteers who came from all over the world to perform free surgeries on the poorest children suffering facial deformities brought about from Cleft Palate and Cleft Lip. While there, David was invited to observe the brilliant work of these doctors first hand and was moved by what he saw. "I was amazed at the technical perfection and artistic skill of the doctors who performed the surgeries. In only one 45-minute operation, I saw the life of a child changed forever. Operation Smile is a godsend," Pomeranz said. Pictured with Pomeranz in the accompanying photo is talented singer Chadleen Lacdo-o, who appeared as David's guest in all three concerts and was, herself, a recipient of an Operation Smile cleft palate surgery when she was four.

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Loretta Holloway, a longtime Las Vegas performer who once again, calls South Carolina home), will be guest vocalist when the Skipp Pearson Jazz Foundation presents Conversations in Swing, saluting the Big Band/Swing Music Era at Lincoln Center in New York City. The two day event is in celebration of Jazz History Month. Holloway, a native of Belton, South Carolina, recently traveled to Arlington, Virginia, with Pearson's Jazz Foundation Orchestra for the South Carolina/New Hampshire Grits and Granite Inaugural Ball and the historic inauguration of President Barack Obama. Holloway is no stranger to the Big Apple, having starred in the off-Broadway production of Mama, I Want To Sing II at the Heckscher Theatre during the summer of 1990. Conversations in Swing will take place on Saturday, April 25th and Sunday, April 26th at 2 and 4 p.m. at the Frederick P. Rose Hall/Jazz at Lincoln Center, 33 West 60th Street, 11th Floor.

Loretta Holloway

Doris Troy

Skipp Pearson

The creation of Mama, I Want to Sing was a family affair. The plot is loosely based on the life of Doris Troy. Troy was a singer who, after writing and recording the 1963 hit, Just One Look, spent several years in Britain before returning to her New York roots. Ms. Troy appeared in both Mama, I Want to Sing, and Mama, I Want to Sing II, as her mother, Mama Winter. Ms. Troy's sister, Vy Higginsen, is the narrator for both productions. She is also the co-producer of the show, and the co-author, along with her husband, Ken Wydro, the show's director, of the book and lyrics. Doris lived the last 14 years of her life in Las Vegas. She died on February 16th, 2004, at the age of 67. It was her friend, Doris Troy, that Loretta Holloway portrayed in Mama, I Want to Sing II.

A native of Orangeburg, South Carolina, saxophonist Thales Thomas "Skipp" Pearson's has been playing jazz since the age of 14. Over the years, his amazing professional career has allowed him to share the stage with such renowned musicians as Sam Cooke, Wycliffe Gordon, Patti LaBelle, Chris Potter, Otis Redding, George Smith, Drink Smalls, Sonny Thronton, Fred Wesley, David Haynes, Ron Westray, and Wynton Marsalis, among others. Pearson's numerous professional music credits include performances throughout Europe and across the United States. In 1998, Pearson was inducted into the South Carolina State University Jazz Band Hall of Fame. In 2003 Pearson received the state of South Carolina's highest artistic honor; the distinguished Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Award for individuals artistic excellence. In 2002 the South Carolina State House of Representative presented Pearson with a commendation in honor of his extraordinary contributions to the world of jazz music and to congratulate him on an outstanding career. That same year, he performed at Jazz! Carolina for the first time. Throughout his career Pearson has been the subject of several South Carolina Public TV programs, local, regional and statewide news articles, and interviewed by syndicated radio and television talk shows hosts. A career educator, Pearson has taught scores of public school children the importance, and benefits of having music in their lives. For 30 years, he served as the general music teacher, as well as, band director in Bamberg and Clarendon School Districts, building the first band programs available to children in those areas.

Skipp Peterson photo by Andy Haworth

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From talented chanteuse Diane Ellis comes this information...My friends, awesome singer and pianist Joe Darro, Bruce Westcott on keys and vocals, and Jimmy Racey on drums and vocals, are playing at a very inviting restaurant called DeStefano's on the northeast corner of Tropicana and Pecos, Thursday nights starting at 7:30 p.m. I have been sitting in there and hopefully will get at least one night a week out of it. They invite singers and musicians to come on down and have some fun and do a little singing and playing, so please pass the word! Okay, Diane, we're passing the word.

We just got a few more, last minute, words. Diane will also be singing at DeStefano's tomorrow night (Saturday the 4th) beginning at 7.

Diane Ellis

Jonathan Potenciano

Darcus Speed

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Bugsy's at 6145 W. Sahara, that was closed for a few months, is now back up and running with entertainment provided by some of Las Vegas' favorites. This Tuesday and Wednesday (April 7th and 8th), it's Jonathan from 8 p.m. to midnight. In this venue, Jonathan will be backed by Michael G on keyboards, Larry Esparza on guitar and vocals, and Robert Shipley on drums. Originally from the Philippines, Jonathan Potenciano, a Las Vegas entertainer of more than 20 years, is probably best-known as the front man of the popular show band, Jonathan & MusicMagic. Following in the "initial" steps of Electric Light Orchestra (ELO), Bachman Turner Overdrive (BTO), Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (CSNY), and others who have decided to go with a shorter, modernized version of their original name, Jonathan's band is now known as JAMM (not to be confused with Clint Holmes' and Bill Fayne's original musical, JAM, or Just Another Man). At Bugsy's, enhanced by a trio, Jonathan has the opportunity to perform classic and romantic material associated with the likes of singers Michael Buble, Al Jarreau, Frank Sinatra and Luther Vandross. For the big band JAMM-sound, Jonathan and his fellow musicians can frequently be seen and heard in the Indigo Lounge at Bally's.

Also appearing at Bugsy's, from 8 p.m. to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays, is Darcus Speed, with Ronnie Rathers on guitar and vocals, Billy Nunn on keyboards and vocals, and Corey Mason on drums. Bugsy's is located at 6145 W. Sahara at Jones.

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Singer/harmonica player Ronnie Rose and pianist Mike Clark, with drummer Cliff Workman, invite folks to bring their dancing shoes and their appetite to the Mezza Lounge & Grill on Monday, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. The Monday night spot is usually occupied by Bill Fayne and Teddy Davey, both members (with Bobby Black) of the Las Vegas Tenors. In recent weeks, when the Tenors are performing at sea, out of the city, or in a main showroom (like they will be from May 1st through 3rd, when they appear at the Suncoast), It is Rose and Clark who have been entertaining the Mezza crowd. Thanks to increased business, on Tuesday, Jeanne Brei and The Speakeasy Swingers will also be back at Mezza. Located at 9460 W. Tropicana near Ft. Apache, Mezza is described as a cute, very clean place, with a good size dance floor and reasonable prices on their excellent Italian and Mediterranean food. All that, plus good live entertainment. What more could one ask? Call (702) 489-4493 for additional information.

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Another friend (we have so many, nyuk, nyuk, nyuk), Mary Marcella Schwartz of Handy Girls fame, is very excited about the fact that a movie, based on The Three Stooges, is in the works. Why should Ms. Schwartz take interest in this project? It's because, Larry Fine (real name, Louis Feinberg), the bushy-haired Stooge, was Mary's Uncle Larry. MGM has set two-time Academy Award-winner (Mystic River in 2003, and Milk in 2008) Sean Penn to play the knuckleheaded Larry. Negotiations are currently underway for Jim Carrey to play Curly Howard, born Jerome Lester Horwitz. Rumors are that Carrey is already making plans to gain 40 pounds to approximate the physical look of Curly. The Farrelly Brothers (There's Something About Mary, Dumb and Dumber, Shallow Hal) want Benicio Del Toro (Oscar-winner for Traffic) to play the eye-ball-poking, head-slapping ringleader, Harry Moses Horwitz (brother of Jerome Horwitz), better known to Stooges fans as Moe Howard.

Larry Fine

Jimmy Emerson, Kellie Wright & Rip Taylor

Gary & Julie Olds

And speaking of Ms. Schwartz, she had the opportunity to present copies of The Handy Girls Can Fix It! book, conceived by herself and partner Barbara Ciarlantini, to Molly and Maggie Cerda, the two daughters of Terri and Chuck Cerda, who recently had their Las Vegas home completely redone through ABC TV's popular Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The show, featuring the Las Vegas segment, will air on May 10th.

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The Mentalist was recently named TV's Sexiest Man. What a nice honor for Las Vegas entertainer Gerry McCambridge. What? It's not Gerry McCambridge, the fellow with the show in the Night Owl Showroom at Hooters? Is there another person known as The Mentalist? Well, apparently there is. It's some guy named Simon Baker, who we hear has a very successful TV series on CBS. Gerry McCambridge, on the other hand, also has a successful show. The Menatlist is currently entertaining amazed audience members at the Hooters Hotel Casino, on Tropicana, just east of the Tropicana Hotel. Show times are at 6:30 p.m., Saturdays through Thursdays. Tickets are $36.95. For reservations, call (866) 584-6687.

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Last Sunday, at the Clark County Flamingo Library Theatre, the Performing Arts Society of Nevada Brown Bag Concerts presented Kellie Wright and some of her closest and most talented friends as they saluted the Great American Songbook, and more. Kellie Wright's friends include vocalists Cindi Lee, Carlo Driggs, Audrei Kairen and the ladies of Dangerous Curves - Lisa Smith, Gret Menzies and Karen Merstik-Michaels (who have a great blend and did a beautiful job on The Days of Wine and Roses), accompanied by musicians, Tony Branco on keyboards, Geoff Newman on bass, and Barry Farley on drums. Australian born Kellie Wright has enjoyed a career in entertainment that has spanned the globe from Australia to Japan to the U.S. She most recently performed for two years in Tony 'n Tina's Wedding at the Rio, and last year, recorded the CD for a new musical/cabaret show, Same Old Songs. Earlier in 2008, Kellie starred in Kenneth Blake's Showstoppers at the Northern Quest Casino in Spokane, Washington, and returned there in September to star in Breck Wall's Bottoms Up with Rip Taylor. In June, Kellie will return to the same venue to star in Showstoppers 2, produced by Jimmy Emerson's StarrPro Productions. Wright is currently performing in a production of Thoroughly Modern Millie at the Summerlin Library and Performing Arts Center. She sings in Divas Undercover for corporate events, and performs with her fabulous jazz trio, A Touch of Blue. Kelli has been the lead vocalist for many bands, both in the U.S. and Japan, and spent two years as a featured singer in Jubilee! at Bally's Hotel in Las Vegas. She also starred as Miss Lilly in The Golden Horseshoe Revue at Disneyland. Kellie has also performed in Oliver, Cabaret, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Sweet Charity, South Pacific, and A Funny Thing Happened On the Way To the Forum. In last weekends' show, among the songs Kellie performed were Blues In the Night, Fever, Cry Me a River, Don't Rain On My Parade, Come Rain or Come Shine, It Had To Be You, a medley of I Could Write a Book/The Very Thought of You/Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me, and a nice duet of Too Marvelous For Words, sung along with her talented mother in filmed footage from a 1956 TV show (ala Natalie and Nat King Cole, and Lorna Luft and her mother, Judy Garland). Driggs (formerly with Paul Revere and The Raiders) sang Fly Me to the Moon, and a duet with Kellie on Second Time Around from the musical, Same Old Songs. Cindi (a former Jubilee! cast member) sang The Look of Love, and Audrei performed Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller's I Only Want Some.

And speaking of Dangerous Curves (and we were), look for the ladies to be the stars of their own afternoon show, Girl Talk, presented by the Performing Arts Society of Nevada at the Flamingo Library on April 19th at 2. We will have more on the trio closer to their performance date.

Also last Sunday afternoon (and into the night), we were actually at that Italian joint on the south end of Las Vegas Blvd. As regular Claire Voyant readers know, we no longer patronize the place, due to the all too obvious favoritism shown to "special" customers and those with deep pockets, while others are often virtually ignored. The owners seem to have forgotten their Las Vegas roots, although WE clearly remember the small, friendly neighborhood establishment, owned by a former lounge singer and her family, that used to be located on Eastern at Tropicana. Regarding the newer, larger, but not improved, place, we do give very high marks to that genial gentleman, Sean Grady, who serves as host over there a few nights a week. But we digress. The reason we even walked through the doors of the bistro, was to attend the delayed wedding reception for our friends, Gary and Julie Olds. Why was the celebration held there? Music man Gary has worked at that joint, on and off, for more than five years...sometimes as musical director. Here is the Olds wedding/reception story. When the lovebirds had their romantic wedding on a boat at Lake Mead last October 12th, they tried to get a hundred, plus, of their nearest and dearest friends onto the floating chapel. When the barge started to sink, Gary and Julie went into plan B. They shooed the overload crowd away, just keeping a few relatives (Gary's mom, Madelyn Olds, and Julie's sisters, Trinia Rhode and Carole Hazlitt), photographers, videographers and Keith Nelson around. Why Nelson? Because it was Keith, best known as one of the top bass players in these (or any other) parts, who performed the ceremony (yes, he is also a minister). Not to completely alienate their friends, Gary and Julie promised to make it all up to the disappointed mass of people. On Sunday, they did just that. The attendees at the lovely reception were first treated to a video, in real-time and exactly as recorded, of the entire ceremony. On that windy October day at the lake, the beautiful bride wore a lovely gown that she made herself, and Gary looked very handsome in his white tux (the wore the same apparel at their party.) A tasty buffet (wedding cake included) followed the film. Not surprisingly, there was lots of music involved, in both the wedding ceremony and last weekend's celebration. Of course the groom, who is a multi-talented, well-respected musician (drums and vocals and, on special occasions, a pianist), contributed his talents at both the ceremony and the reception. During the wedding, Gary serenaded his bride with Wheels of Life and People I Belong To (with personalized lyrics), while during the party, he performed The Prayer, Billy Joel's Lullaby, and the full version of Gino Vannelli's Brother to Brother, accompanying himself with his own self-produced tracks and a live drum performance. We wish the bride and groom a long and happy life together.

A number of the couple's many musical friends also performed, among them (listed in alphabetical order, to be politically correct), Cocho Arbe, Paul Badia, Chris Clermont, Tommy Deering, Ronnie Fabre-Golden, Steve Golden, Jamie Grant, Chuck Hoover, Richel Kompst, Carmine Mandia, Deena Russo-March, Brian O'Shea, David Poe, and Jeannie Snow. Chris Gordon, bass player "du jour," also participated. We sat with longtime singer/pianist (and friend) Doug Taylor, who opted out of performing due to allergies.

Following the after-wedding party, a totally unrelated event, a benefit to assist pianist Michael Clark with his medical bills, incurred as the result of his recent serious spinal surgery, was held at the same establishment. Many local entertainers stepped up to the plate to give their time and talent to help with this project. Some of those generous and caring souls who performed were (also listed alphabetically for the same reason as above), Sandra Benton, Regi Brown, Scott Cannady, Brad Cordle, Joey Finger, Elisa Fiorillo, Dave Hart, Serena Henry, Clint Holmes, Kelly Clinton-Holmes, Denise Najame', Ronnie Rose, Tim Scott, Darcus Speed, Gayle Steele, Tommy Steele and John Wedemeyer.

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Gladys Knight

Terry Stokes & Michael Johns

The Legendary 'Empress of Soul,' Gladys Knight, is back at The Orleans Showroom, tonight through Sunday, with shows at 8 p.m. The multi-Grammy-winner has had a deep influence on the music world throughout her five-decade career. Gladys was only four when she made her solo singing debut in a Baptist church in Atlanta. In 1952, shortly after winning a prize for her performance on the televised Ted Mack Amateur Hour, eight-year old Gladys formed The Pips, made up of her brother, sister and two cousins. With young Gladys supplying the throaty vocals, and The Pips providing impressive harmonies and graceful choreography, the group went on to achieve icon status, recording some of the most memorable songs of the '60s, '70s and '80s. Top 20 hits, including Every Beat of My Heart, I Heard It Through the Grapevine, If I Were Your Woman, I've Got To Use My Imagination, Neither One of Us (Wants to be the First to Say Goodbye), Best Thing to Ever Happen to Me, On and On, and the No. 1 smash-hit, Midnight Train to Georgia, established Gladys Knight and The Pips as the premier pop/R&B vocal ensemble in the world. In addition to recording nine solo albums over the years, Knight has also teamed up to record with such artists as Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, Johnny Mathis, Ray Charles, Elton John, Dionne Warwick, Kenny Rogers and Patti LaBelle. In addition to her vocal talent, Knight's involvement in other creative undertakings, business adventures and humanitarian activities has been extensive and has brought her widespread honors and acclaim. In 1986, she produced and starred in the Cable Ace Award-winning Sisters in the Name of Love, an HBO special co-starring Dionne Warwick and Patti LaBelle. Knight recorded the title theme for the James Bond movie License to Kill in the late '80s. In 1999, she completed a starring run on Broadway in the small musical hit, Smokey Joe's Café. Knight also managed to find time to publish her autobiography entitled, Between Each Line of Pain and Glory. Tickets for her show at The Orleans start at $74.95, plus tax, and can be purchased by calling the Box Office at (702) 365.7075.

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The Tropicana, former home of the almost 50-year-old Les Folies Bergere (that ended its run last Sunday), has announced some new (or, new for them) entertainment options on the horizon. First, there is the Soprano's Last Supper. The interactive dinner show could be described as a movable feast as, in Las Vegas, it has been at Krave on East Harmon, the Riviera, and is now (through April 15th) at the Greek Isles. Beginning on April 24th, the Sopranos will be serving up their Supper at the Tropicana. Then, we have Hypnosis Unleashed, starring The Bad Boys of Hypnosis, Terry Stokes and Michael Johns. The hypnotists have also racked up some mileage around the city in the past eight years - setting up shop at places such as Bourbon Street (now gone), Tuscany Suites, Stardust (now gone), the Empire Ballroom (now closed), Mandalay Bay's House of Blues and most recently at the Harmon Theater at Krave. Later this month, the twosome will move over to the Trop. The hotel/casino has fully remodeled the space adjacent to the Player's Deli, specifically for the use of these shows. Now called The Cellar, the venue will house Soprano's Last Supper, Tuesdays through Saturdays at 7 p.m., and Hypnosis Unleashed nightly at 9:30. Tickets for the Soprano's Last Supper start at $55 plus tax and fees, and for Hypnosis Unleashed, as low as $40 plus tax and fees. They are available now at the Tiffany Theater Box Office. Call the Tropicana at (702) 739-2222, for reservations.

* * * * * *

To help them sell tickets, we were prepared to give a last minute pitch for tomorrow night's Oh What a Night! show at the Starbright Theatre in Sun City Summerlin. It turns out the celebration and tribute to the music of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, presented by Chapquist Entertainment, is already completely sold out. For those that wanted to see the show and were unable to get tickets, dry your tears. Due to popular demand, another performance of Oh What a Night! has been scheduled at the Starbright for May 30th. That will be their fifth time at the Sun City Summerlin theater in just six months (the show was also a three-night sellout when it played the Suncoast showroom in early January). If you don't want to be shut out of the May 30th performance, we suggest making reservations as soon as possible. Call (702) 240-1301, or for credit card orders, (702) 869-2064. As usual, we will have more on this production, closer to the show date.

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