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.  
Shes...

Claire Voyant  

Note: This is a past column from July 09, 2010
You can find the current column HERE


Las Vegas - July 9, 2010


Babe Pier

Bobby Rydell

The 6th anniversary party of the famed non-club club, F.I.O.R.E. (Fun Italians Organizing Ridiculous Events) will take place at the Italian American Social Club, 2330 E. Sahara, on Friday evening (not at lunch time, like most of the F.I.O.R.E. gatherings), July 16th, with doors opening at 6:30 p.m.
On July 5th, almost 50 people had indicated they would be attending what might be the social event of the season (or, at the very least, the social event of July 16th)...and none of them were using House Seats or any other discount tickets. The annual F.I.O.R.E. anniversary celebration is one of the few during the year when ladies are not only invited to join the gents, but are treated royally by being presented with flowers and chocolates. Ladies must be invited by a F.I.O.R.E. president and, as we have mentioned before, ALL of the F.I.O.R.E. gentlemen are presidents). There will be a great buffet, no host bar, live music, entertainment (F.I.O.R.E. organizer, Nelson Sardelli, informs that clean jokes from the presidents will be permitted), dancing, and surprise gifts. There will also be a special performance by a true Las Vegas icon, comic/impressionist, Babe Pier. Dress code is "Summer Elegant" (no tank tops or flip-flops, please). Cost for all of this fun is $35 per person. Spread the word. Invite your friends. Plan to join the party. Please RSVP to Gene Vitale at
[email protected] as soon as possible. See you there. For more info on this organization, whose sole purpose is to have fun, check out http://www.nonclubclubfiore.com/.

The esteemed leader/organizer of the F.I.O.R.E. crew, that would be the above mentioned Nelson Sardelli, had back surgery on Tuesday, the 6th. Not one to miss many parties, Sardelli plans to be back in action and in attendance for the anniversary celebration.

And speaking of Babe Pier, Las Vegas' favorite, comic/impressionist will open for Bobby Rydell during Rydell's Saturday, July 17th engagement in The Club at the Cannery Casino & Hotel. Since his debut as a rock �n roll teen idol in the 1950s, Bobby Rydell has truly been an icon of entertainment and continues to delight audiences worldwide with his extraordinary vocal, acting and comedic talents. Throughout an amazing career that has spanned six decades, Rydell has earned his reputation as a classic performer. As a teenager, he was a hit on both screen and stage with starring roles in films such as "Bye Bye Birdie" and plays such as "West Side Story." When he was just 19, Bobby Rydell was the youngest person ever to headline New York's famous Copacabana. As a recording artist, he had 34 Top 40 Hits to place him in Billboard's Top 5 artists of his era. His hit singles include "Volare," "Wild One," "We Got Love" and "Kissin' Time." Bobby Rydell's influence on popular music, and his iconic stature as a teen superstar of his time, even inspired the producers of the musical, "Grease," to name the story's high school "Rydell High" in his honor. Currently, Bobby Rydell keeps a full schedule with regular performances in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, and headline tours around the world. Tickets are available in three levels: Prime $29.95, Patio $19.95 and Reserved $9.95, and can be purchased at the Cannery ticket sales counter located at the front desk, by calling (702) 507-5757 or online at http://www.cannerycasinos.com.

* * * * * * *

In last Friday's piece on the outstanding vocal group, Fifth Avenue (Rob Hyatt, Jerry Jones, Bryce Robinson and Jeff Celentano), we omitted two important things - one on purpose and the other by accident. The "on purpose" was in not identifying the six terrific musicians who played for Fifth Avenue's Sing Sing Sing! A Tribute to the Great Vocal Groups for their June 26th and 27th dates in their first gig in the Suncoast showroom. There was a good (we think) reason for that omission - we were missing the name of one of the players. Thanks to Fifth Avenue member, Jerry Jones, who responded to our SOS call while relaxing in Hawaii, we can now provide the identity of all the talented musicians - Bill Fayne (long associated with Clint Holmes) served as MD and pianist, John Wedemeyer was on guitar, Lenny Lopez, of Santa Fe fame (percussion/vocals), Jamie Hosmer (keyboards/vocals), Mike Meecham on drums, and the formerly unknown (by us), but now known, Jozef (and, yes, that's how he spells it) Bobula on bass. The accident (wea culpa) was in not giving photo credit to Ed Foster for the picture he took of Fifth Avenue, with Domenick Allen and Bill Fayne, that we used last week. (Ed also took the Fifth Avenue picture that we are using this week, so thanks, Ed).


Fifth Avenue by Ed Foster

Mac King

On Sunday, we will be at the South Point to see The Four Freshmen create the harmonies that have inspired many vocal groups, including the Beach Boys and the above mentioned Fifth Avenue, over the past five decades. Show times are tonight through Sunday at 7:30. Tickets are a more than reasonable $15 to $25. Call (702) 797-8055 for reservations.

* * * * * * *

Comedy-magician Mac King announces the next installment of his Magic-in-a-Minute retail brand with the release of Lunchbox-o-Magic. Lunchbox-O-Magic contains more than 50 funny and easy-to-do magic tricks that will make your kid a lunchroom superstar. Mac stars in The Mac King Comedy Magic Show, now in its 11th year at Harrah's. "Kids get bored eating the same ol' sandwich and banana for lunch everyday" said King. "With Lunchbox-O-Magic, they can have fun turning ordinary lunch items into mealtime magic shows that will astound their friends." Created by Mac and his cousin Bill King, Lunchbox-O-Magic is a real lunchbox containing a trick thermos, flatware and sandwich bag plus other magical lunchtime props. Also included is an instruction book and DVD featuring easy how-to-do videos for tricks like Water Weight, Steel Appeal, and Salt & Pepper Separator. In June of 2004, Mac King launched "Magic In a Minute" � a Sunday comic strip that runs in major national newspapers � alongside illustrator Bill King. The success of "Magic In a Minute" led to magic toys, magic sets and instructional videos that are sold in major box retailers nationwide. King debuted his first book Great Big Ol' Book-O-Magic in 2007, a magic book which quickly became a hit among children. In 2009 Suitcase-O-Magic � a miniature suitcase filled with magic tricks and instructions � hit store shelves. Continuing the success of his bookstore endeavors, Mac King released his latest book Mac King's Campfire Magic in March 2010, followed by Mac King's Campfire Magic App for iPhone and iPad. Released in the end of May 2010, Lunchbox-O-Magic is King's latest magic set to hit store shelves. Mac King has been recognized with numerous accolades including "Favorite Male Las Vegan," and "Best Bargain Show" by the Las Vegas-Review Journal 2009 "Best of Las Vegas" readers' poll, "Funniest Act in Magic Today" by Magic Magazine, Magician of the Year by The Magic Castle, and "Entertainer of the Year" by the Las Vegas Weekly "Readers Choice Awards." King, one of today's brightest and most talented magicians, takes the stage twice daily, at 1 and 3 p.m., Tuesdays through Saturdays, in the Showroom Theatre at Harrah's Las Vegas. Tickets are $24.95 plus tax. Additional information on The Mac King Comedy Magic Show can be found by visiting http://www.mackingshow.com. Lunchbox-O-Magic is available exclusively at Barnes & Noble across the U.S. for $16.99. For more information regarding "Magic in a Minute" products, including Lunchbox-O-Magic, please visit http://www.mackingshop.com<.

* * * * * * *

One of our spies (we have them everywhere) spotted onetime child actress, Beverly Washburn - The Greatest Show On Earth, Old Yeller, The Juggler, Hans Christian Andersen, and the cult hit, Spider Baby (a musical version recently played at The Onyx in Las Vegas), among others - and Randy Carlson, Route Manager for Greenspun Media's Las Vegas Weekly magazine, lunching at the Claim Jumper near the Green Valley Ranch (and Greenspun Media offices) on Wednesday. For an interesting read on the Hollywood of yesterday, check out Beverly's book, Reel Tears, capturing memories of one of the best child crying actress' in the business.


Beverly Washburn & Randy Carlson

Kenny Kerr

G.G. & Chuck Conklin

* * * * * * *

Hypnotist Ken Owens informs us that the incomparable comic/female impersonator Kenny Kerr will be acting as emcee/hostess and performing in Las Vegas at Flex (4347 W. Charleston Blvd.) on Saturday, July 24th at 9 p.m. The occasion is the combined birthday celebration of Flex bartender, the hospitable and funny Darrin, and the alternative nightclub's owner, Shelly. Darrin promises Go Go Boys, food and plenty of fun. For additional information, call Flex at (702) 385-3539. They are open around the clock.

* * * * * * *

Our musical friends, (Chris) Hudson & (Doug) Saleeby, who now make their homes in Memphis, wanted to let readers know about a cause of theirs. This year, Doug and Chris made a pledge to do all they could to spread the word about one of their favorite venues for live performance...Theatre Memphis! The theater, located on Perkins near Poplar and Southern, is offering a great deal like none they have ever presented. Anyone can be a special person to Theatre Memphis and take on Producer status. For $1,000 ($700 of that is tax deductible), donors will receive - 20 tickets, free drinks at performances, Line Producer recognition, and a special party and preview of Annie Get Your Gun on Tuesday, August 17th. The Theatre Memphis Season opens with Irving Berlin's Tony Award-winning musical, Annie Get Your Gun on August 20th. It has been regarded as the musical with the perfect score. Following this musical sensation, Edward Albee's A Delicate Balance is featured on the Next Stage. The winner of the 2007 Edgar Award for Best Mystery Play, Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure, will have audiences gripped with intrigue just in time for Halloween. To close out 2010 and get everyone in the spirit, the Charles Dickens classic, A Christmas Carol, returns for the 33rd year, starring our original Scrooge, the beloved Barry Fuller. This Theatre Memphis tradition continues to fill hearts with holiday cheer. In 2011, TM will present a regional premiere of a new musical, followed by Tony Award winner, Amadeus; Tony and Academy Award-winning musical, Cabaret, Shakespeare's Richard III, and the American classic, Picnic. Theatre Memphis will close the Lohrey Stage season with the first locally produced production of George Gershwin's Crazy for You, beginning June 3rd, 2011, and continuing through June 26th. We are always very happy to help longtime friends promote a worthwhile cause.

* * * * * * *

Our friend, G.G. Conklin, who is entertainer Jimmy Hopper's personal assistant, is counting her blessings and giving credit to the guardian angels who watch over her. On May 1st, G.G. was involved in a freak motorcycle accident while traveling 70 mph just outside of Elizabeth City, North Carolina. With no warning, and still no cause that investigators can pinpoint, the windshield on G.G.'s Honda 1300 VTX bike cracked, causing pieces of glass to smack her in the face. Through some miracle, she was able to pull safely off to the side of the road. G.G.'s husband, Chuck, riding a little ways behind her, followed her off the road to see why his wife had stopped. When he moved around in front of her, he was horrified to see her face covered in blood. G.G. was transported to a nearby hospital where she "nearly bit the dust" three times that day, if not for God's grace." She had a face full of stitches, and, after the first of the year, will be undergoing plastic surgery. The silver lining in the dark cloud? As G.G., who has managed to maintain her sense of humor throughout this painful ordeal, asks, "What woman my age doesn't like to hear the words "laser re-surfacing?" She goes on to say, "I'm thankful to God that He spared me, and glad to know His angels know how to drive a motorcycle." We are thankful as well.

As for Jimmy Hopper, the majority of his time is spent performing on Wednesday and Thursday evenings, through Spring, 2010, at The Ritz Restaurant & Garden in Newport Beach, California. Show times are 7 to 10 p.m. Seating is limited. Call (949) 720-1800. On most Friday and Saturday evenings, from 9 p.m. to midnight, Jimmy can be found entertaining guests at the Palm Terrace/The Island Hotel, also in Newport Beach. Reservations are recommended. Call (949) 759-0808. Hopper has some great national corporate engagements over the next several months, but those dates are not open to the public.


Ai & YuKi of Zen Magic

Ronnie Rose

Marty Kreloff & Stars by Steve Marcus

And speaking of angels and miracles...Only five days into their performance at the Saxe Theater in the Miracle Mile Mall adjacent to Planet Hollywood, two aerial artists from Zen Magic fell from their silk rope during Tuesday's 4 p.m. show. Amazingly, famed Japanese illusionists, Ai and YuKi, whose motto is "love, courage and magic," suffered only minor injuries. The duo, who have been working together for about 10 years, have been featured on Fox's Masters of Illusion and have also appeared at the world-famous Magic Castle.

* * * * * * *

In November, Jason Forbach, who, until recently, was one of the cast members of Phantom - The Las Vegas Spectacular, will be joining the national tour of Les Miserables. We wish this talented young man the best of luck on his show business journey.

* * * * * * *

With many entertainers crying the blues about being out of work, Ronnie Rose is "Singing the Blues" (thank you, Guy Mitchell) all around the city. For example, tonight and tomorrow night, Ronnie is in the Rampart Casino's Addison Lounge, with shows at 8 p.m. Seating is limited, so get there early. Then on Sunday night, Rose is back at the House of Blues Restaurant inside Mandalay Bay from 8 to 11. Good news...The Horn Section is back!

* * * * * * *

Last minute reminders...
Artist Martin Kreloff's Stars and Sumos exhibit runs at the Laura Henkel Fine Art Gallery, 107 E. Charleston Blvd., through August 21st. Call (702) 952-9656 for gallery hours.

It's onetime teen idol David Cassidy at the Silverton (Blue Diamond and Las Vegas Blvd.) at 8 p.m. tomorrow. Tickets are $25. Call (702) 263-7777.

And Rich Little plays The Club at the Cannery in North Las Vegas Craig Road and Losee) at the same time tomorrow night. Ticket prices for "The Man of a Thousand Voices" start at just $9.95. Call (702) 507-5757 or toll free at (866) 999-4899 for reservations.

And speaking of the Cannery, the Lon Bronson All-Star Band performs in The Club, tonight from 8 to 11 p.m. Admission is $5 at the door (get there early). The group returns to The Club on August 6th, same time, same price (21 and over, please).


Lon Bronson

Boyz II Men

Boyz II Men will perform in The Orleans Showroom, tomorrow and Sunday at 8 p.m. The contemporary rhythm and blues vocal group is best known for their emotional ballads and complex, intricate a cappella harmonies. Based on record sales of hits such as 1992's "End of the Road," "I'll Make Love To You," "On Bended Knee," and "One Sweet Day," Boyz II Men is the most successful R&B male vocal group of all time, having sold more than sixty million albums worldwide. The group won four Grammy Awards in the 1990s, and was nominated for two Grammys in 2009. These achievements were enough to earn Boyz II Men recognition as Billboard magazine's most successful musical group of the 1990s. Tickets start at $44.95 plus taxes and fees. Call (702) 365-7075 for reservations.

Locals favorite, Clint Holmes performs 7:30 shows at the Suncoast, tomorrow and Sunday nights. Tickets start at $29.95 plus taxes and fees. Next week, we will have some good news regarding Clint's Vocal Soup cohort, Domenick Allen. Stay tuned.

* * * * * * *

Eighteen of Southern Nevada's bravest firefighters took the stage at the 11th Annual Fire & Rain Firefighter Bachelor Auction, held Saturday, June 19th at RAIN Nightclub inside the Palms Casino Resort. The event attracted roughly 550 attendees and raised $50,000 for the Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation. Each bachelor prize package included a variety of luxurious items ranging from hotel suites and dinners for two, to show tickets, spa packages and jewelry. "A lot of hard work went into making this event a big success," said Warren Whitney, public information officer for the Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation. "We received a tremendous amount of support from our community partners, bachelors, volunteers and those who attended our event. Thanks to their help, the Burn Foundation was able to raise $50,000 which will fund our programs and services throughout the year." The Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide assistance to burn victims and their families, assist in catastrophic events as a resource to the community, and to further educate the community of fire and life safety. The foundation consists of Las Vegas valley firefighters from Clark County Fire Department, Las Vegas Fire & Rescue, North Las Vegas Fire Department, Nellis Fire Department and Henderson Fire Department. The Burn Foundation has raised more than $1,150,000 for the Southern Nevada community since 2003 and has helped over six-dozen Las Vegas valley families, totaling more than 40,000 benefiting residents in just the past two years. For more information on the Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation, visit www.theburnfoundation.org. In the accompanying photo, firefighter John Steele and his dancers heat up the room at the bachelor auction.


Firefighter John Steele

Mickey O'Neill at Blackrock in Dublin

* * * * * * *

We have gotten permission from the author, to share a poem that she wrote for her longtime significant other, with our readers. Titled One Last Time, this loving tribute was written by Mary O'Schwartz (real name, Mary Marcella Schwartz) in memory of the late musician, Mickey O'Neill, on July 2, 2010.

I brought you home for one last time
Just as I'd done before
I gently walked you up the stairs
And put the key into the door

Your pal was there to greet you
With his favorite ball and bone
And though he couldn't see you
He somehow knew that you were home

This day seemed so much the same
Like all other days before
But emptiness had snuck right in
And closed each and every door

But somehow without knowing how
The sadness crept right through
And filled up my empty heart
With more sorrow than I knew

I just cannot seem to comprehend
But trying hard to understand
The reason you had to go so soon
Was that God had made His plan

So I just want you to always know
That I will love you �til the end
And every night as I say my prayers
I'll ask God for the ache to mend

The only thing that brings me solace
In the darkness of each day
Is that you came home for one last time
And this is where you'll always stay

Even though your soul's in Heaven
With the ones that love you so
You'll always live within my heart
And from there you'll never go

Oh, Michael Gerard O'Neill
My Irish drummer man
May God grant you speed on angels' wings
And bring you peace in your Homeland

* * * * * * *

Former Las Vegan, Gina Eckstine, recently did a well received concert at the Norris Center for Performing Arts in Los Angeles where she currently resides. Gina, daughter of the late, great Billy Eckstine, recently appeared with the sons of the famed Mills Brothers in a cleverly named show called "Puttin' On Heirs." Sounds like something that might work around these parts. Gina is also the musical director for the Summer Musical Theatre & Hip Hop Camp located in the West Hills section of the San Fernando Valley.


Gina Eckstine

Randy Couture

Frank Marino

* * * * * * *

Publicist Norm Johnson passes along this information regarding Bob Kephart's upcoming lineup of comics at the Sahara's Comedy Stop. Through July 11th, it's Jimmie "JJ" Walker, Peaches Rodriquez and Erick Griffin (headliner); July 12th through 18th, Glenn Jensen, Carmen Lynch and Dan Grueter (headliner); July 19th trough 25th, Lucas Brown, James Sibley and Louis Ramey (headliner); July 26th through August 1st, Tom McTiernan, Jarrod Harris and Quinn Dahle (headliner); and August 2nd through 8th, Anton Shuford, Tina Giorgi and Jay Black (headliner). Show times are at 9 p.m., with tickets priced at $19.95 plus tax and, if required, applicable fees. Must be 18 years old to attend, with ID required. For reservations, call (702) 737-2111.

* * * * * * *

Upcoming guests for Matt Donnelly's Executive Monkeys performing each Wednesday inside The Lounge at the Palms include, on July 14th, Randy Couture, mixed martial artist/Greco-Roman wrestler/actor, and on the 21st, Hot Babes of Reality TV, featuring Tiffany Michelle (Amazing Race) and Trishelle Cannatella (Real World Las Vegas). Bringing a new and dynamic style of improv comedy to the stage, Matt Donnelly's Executive Monkeys, produced by Emily Jillette (wife of magic man, Penn Jillette) is sure to deliver big laughs to The Lounge every Wednesday through July featuring a weekly celebrity guest at 9 p.m. The show, which will run through the month of July, features some of the most supreme improv comedians hailing from Upright Citizens Brigade, Second City, Improv Olympic, Peoples Improv Theatre and Improv Vegas performing a two-act 70-80 minute show. Unlike any other show in Vegas, the first set calls upon audience participation, encouraging the audience to use social media outlet Twitter via their cellular phones as the performers create characters and sketches based on the pictures and words from the tweeting audience. The suggestions are tweeted and are broadcast to an on stage screen to keep the audience up-to-speed. The second act offers a comedic tarot reading of a celebrity guest that will result in an outpour of spontaneous sketches created around the reading. Ticket are on sale now and prices are $25. Tickets can be purchased at the Palms Box Office. The Pearl Box Office is open Sundays through Wednesdays from noon to 7 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays from noon to 9 p.m., and Saturdays from noon to 10 p.m. For more information on upcoming shows, please call (702) 944-3200.

* * * * * * *

Tomorrow, the South Point will host Girls' Day Out from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Island Style event will have more than 80 booths, all featuring products and information of interest to women. Frank Marino's Divas Las Vegas, currently at the Imperial Palace, will take to the stage at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., and soap stars, Jacob Young, from ABC's All My Children, and Jason Thompson of General Hospital, will appear from noon to 3. There is plenty of free parking and there is no charge to attend the event. The first 500 ladies (the Divas are not eligible) get a free gift bag, a Harvest Festival ticket, and an Island lei. We will refrain from making some kind of easy and obvious comment here.

* * * * * * *

SinCityQSocials, the premier social network for GLBT professionals and friends in Las Vegas, held their last week's Mix, Mingle & Meet at the Liberace Museum. The group's Trendy Tuesday ~ Martini Mixers was a hit, with a large eclectic group of people in attendance. We liked their description of the now 30-year-old museum, when they said, "The Strip may sparkle and the neon may shine, but nowhere in Las Vegas will you find a more dazzling spectacle than at the renowned Liberace Museum. Here, you'll see the magnificent, world-famous collections of pianos, cars, costumes and jewelry that established Liberace as the legendary and beloved "Mr. Showmanship."

And speaking of the Liberace Museum (and we often do), if you haven't been there, to take the tour or see a show in the Cabaret, now would be a good time to plan an outing, as the museum is offering bargain admission prices through Labor Day (Monday, September 6th). Discounted admission prices are $10 for adults, and $8 for seniors 65 and older and students with a valid school ID. Children age 12 and under are admitted free of charge when accompanied by an adult. Admission includes an optional complimentary one-hour guided tour at 11 a.m. or 2 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 1 p.m. Sunday. During July, guests may visit the Cabaret Showroom at The Museum for a screening of one of Liberace's movies and lunch from the Liberace Café. For $12, guests may enjoy the "Movie at the Museum" lunch special, which includes the designated movie for the day, a sandwich, chips, drink and dessert. As an option, visitors may view the movie and have a snack for $7, or see the movie alone for $5. On Tuesdays and Saturdays at 1 p.m. (no Wednesday shows through the summer), it's Philip Fortenberry starring in Liberace and Me. Fortenberry, an extraordinary artist and renowned pianist, improvisational composer and cast member of Jersey Boys, performs his intimate acoustic cabaret-style piano performance at the glittering Liberace Museum with performances two days a week. Fortenberry entertains with his versatile styles that encompass a wide range of musical genres. Tickets are $17.50.

The Cabaret at the Liberace Museum presents The Little Things You Do Together, featuring performances by members of RagTag Entertainment. RagTag Entertainment, a group of performers from the Las Vegas Strip and throughout the country, was formed with the idea that "the performing arts are for everybody, not just those who can afford them." These performers have gathered to share their passion and introduce the performing arts and enrich lives through various modes of performance. Throughout the year, RagTag performers give free performances at schools and other venues throughout the Valley. Show is at 3 p.m. Tuesday, July 13th. Tickets for The Little Things You Do Together are $10.

And, while still on the subject of the Liberace Museum, last Thursday was Composers Showcase night at the Liberace Cabaret. These monthly events are never a disappointment, and there are always plenty of surprises. Audience members, made up primarily of people from the entertainment community, never know what to expect - unless they are one of the creative contributors (songwriter or performer). Among those who shared their talent with the Standing Room Only crowd last week were local composers and songwriters, Ryan Beyer, Vita Corimbi and Phil Randall, Tish Diaz, Valeri Glava, Uli Geissendoerfer, Rylan Leo Helmuth, Jason Martinez, Richard Oberacker, Aaron Ramsey, Lee Richey, Carly Thomas Smith, Keith Thompson, William Waldrop and Robert Williamson. Vocals were provided by Christine Hudman, Jamie Karen, Brandon Matthieus, Vusi Sondiyazi, Tina Walsh, and other special guests, while the performing musicians included Eric Andrews, Darren Denman, Philip Fortenberry, James Harvey, Brycen Ingersoll, Jim McIntosh, Keith Nelson (his first time participating in the showcase), and Mark Pardy. Festivities continued at Carluccio's, after the showcase, with Uli Geissendoerfer and Paul Stevenson taking turns at the beautiful mirrored piano (Paul also sang), Valeri Glava playing violin, and Diane Ellis performing a few songs. A great late, late night experience.

* * * * * * *


Lionel Richie

Gerry McCambridge The Mentalist

World-renowned music icon Lionel Richie will bring his four decades of award winning hits to The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on Friday, July 30th and Saturday, the 31st. One of the most distinctive and instantly recognizable voices in music, Richie is excited to introduce fans to songs from his new album, Just Go, which is a remarkable music marriage of his timeless style and a collection of contemporary material. As co-founder of The Commodores in 1967, Richie experienced his first taste of success after the group signed to Motown Records in 1971, becoming one of the most popular U.S. funk bands with "Machine Gun" and "Brick House" before creating a slew of future slow jam Richie-penned classics with "Easy," "Three Times a Lady" and "Sail On." Richie began working outside the Commodores in 1980, with such names as Kenny Rogers, Diana Ross, and other popular music acts of the 1980s. In 1982, the release of his self-titled solo quadruple platinum Motown debut set Lionel on a record-breaking pathway to global superstardom: 1983's ten-million-selling "Can't Slow Down," which won a Grammy for Album of the Year, was followed by 1986's massively-successful "Dancing on the Ceiling." After a period of reflection and personal growth, Lionel returned in 1992 with Back To Front, followed by 1996's Louder Than Words, 1998's Time, 2001's Renaissance, 2003's Encore, the aptly-titled The Definitive Collection, a worldwide multi-million-selling retrospective, 2004's Just For You, and 2006's Coming Home. Just Go, Richie's most recent project, is an album with a decided musical twist and has Lionel working with today's hottest hitmakers - Tricky Stewart & The Dream, Stargate, and Akon - to show that great talent is always timeless. Lionel Richie's show times are Friday, July 30th, and Saturday, July 31st. Both shows begin at 8 p.m. Ticket prices are $75, $95, $125 and $175 (all prices include 10% Live Entertainment Tax), and may be purchased in person at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace Box Office, by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000, or by visiting www.ticketmaster.com, keyword "Caesars Palace". (All Ticketmaster orders may be subject to additional service charges and fees).

* * * * * * *

On June 20th, Gerry McCambridge, best known as The Mentalist, celebrated his fifth year as a Las Vegas headliner. When he opened at the Rampart in 2005, it was for an anticipated three week run. Today, McCambridge has performed more than 1,100 shows in Las Vegas, first at the Rampart, then at the Stardust, followed by a stint at Hooters. McCambridge is currently at the V Theater in the Miracle Mile Mall, adjacent to Planet Hollywood. Show times are Thursdays through Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $54.99 to $65.99, all inclusive. For reservations, call (702) 260-7200.

* * * * * * *


The Killers

From pianist/singer Doug Taylor, who has an ongoing gig at CityCenter, playing the beautiful purple Bösendorfer Grand in Aria's Bar Moderno, comes this late breaking item..."I played with The Killers last night at Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's rally, featuring President Barack Obama. They needed me to add piano along with the violin and cello for their unplugged performance. It was an experience of a lifetime." For those that don't know, The Killers are/were a Las Vegas-based band, made up of Brandon Flowers, Mark Stoermer, David Keuning and Ronnie Vannucci. Vannucci, the group's drummer, was not present for this performance since it was unplugged style. The violinist was Nina DiGregorio, and Rachael Brown was on cello. We hope to have some photos for next week's column.



Have a question about Las Vegas? Want to make a comment (be nice, now)?
If so, drop an e-mail and ask. Click Here
Cousin Claire will do her best to find the answer for you.
You can find Past Columns HERE


     Like to be notified when Claire Voyant's next column is available?
Then join Claire Voyant's announcement mailing list!
Enter your email address below, then click the 'Join List' button:
   

Claire Voyant's portrait by Charlie Frye