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 May 06, 2011
You can find the current column HERE

Las Vegas - May 6, 2011

Susanna Gabbiano

Jason Graae

An Evening of Pops, featuring Clint Holmes and Susanna Gabbiano with the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra, will play the Mainstage at Proctors in Albany, New York, at 8 p.m. on Friday, May 13th, and Saturday, the 14th at 2 p.m. Anyone who reads this column, or lives or spends time in Las Vegas, knows about Clint Holmes. They may not be as familiar with the name Susanna Gabbiano. Susanna is entering the music industry at a point in her life when most singers are re-considering their options. Singing professionally has been a lifelong ambition and it is now "her time" to pursue this dream. She brings a lifetime of experience and emotion to each song that she chooses to sing. Susanna is focusing on a "Popera" style - orchestral pop sung in both English and Italian. Watch for this emerging artists' soon to be released EP - Incarnation Of Love - produced and arranged by Mariano Longo. The Schenectady Symphony Orchestra is a talented group of more than seventy musicians, working under the leadership of award-winning Music Director Charles Schneider. To reach a broad audience, we provide live performances of classical music in several formats and venues. Longo explains how this concert came to be. He has been producing and arranging Las Vegas resident Susanna's new project. "We used a small baroque orchestra on her recordings and we wanted to explore her performing with a symphony orchestra. It became clear that the orchestral market is a 'chicken and egg' equation," says Longo. "It is unlikely that an artist will work with a symphony orchestra without some previous documented film or recording of the artist doing that. - and you can't get the film or recording without doing the concert first - hence the dilemma. So, I went to work and contacted my connections around the country looking for an opportunity where we could arrange a concert and also film and record. To make a very long story short, a promoter friend of mine arranged a meeting with the historic Proctors Theatre in Schenectady, NY. It turns out that Proctors is the home of the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra. Both of them were looking for a fundraising event that would involve the orchestra with some new and exciting programming." Longo goes on to say, "I had the new artist, Susanna, with her music all scored for symphony performance. The orchestra was ready and Proctors is a world class venue - we just needed a headliner. I naturally thought of Clint Holmes, who has been making some forays into this market with the Palm Beach Symphony and the Las Vegas Philharmonic. I had worked out the necessary issues to do a full scale film and digital recording with the Orchestra - so I called Clint and suggested he might like to do this project. It would provide him with a very nice DVD package and promo kit for symphony shows around the world. He agreed and the folks at Proctors and the SSO loved the idea; so the show was locked in. Charles Schneider will be conducting the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra. He also conducts New York's Utica and Saratoga Symphonies, and has been the touring conductor for West Side Story and numerous pops concerts in Upstate New York." Some of Las Vegas' best talent is involved in the production of this concert. Vincent Falcone will serve as special guest conductor for a four-song Frank Sinatra/Sammy Davis Jr. portion of Clint's show. Holmes' fine pianist/musical director, Jeff Neiman, will also perform, and Clint's wife, Kelly Clinton Holmes will also be in attendance.

Gabbiano will feature guest vocalists, John Garafalo and Tyriq Johnson, who will duet with her in both English and Italian (something they rarely get to do in Las Vegas). Susanna's musicians are among Las Vegas' finest. They include guitarist Steve Cantor (Sonny Turner, Mamma Mia!, Tom Scott, Patty Smyth, Lesley Gore, The Drifters, The Chiffons, Darlene Love, Rich Little, and Debbie Reynolds); bass player Dan DeMorales (Dionne Warwick, Burt Bacharach, Johnny Mathis, Sammy Davis Jr., and The Fifth Dimension); drummer Brian Czach (Clint Holmes, Domenick Allen and the Brian Czach Trio); and pianist/ conductor Mariano Longo (Gary Puckett, The Lettermen, The Spinners, Richard Street's Temptations, Lesley Gore, and Bobby Rydell). Mariano the creative producer of this entire production. David Taylor, from Las Vegas' Creative Audio Video Treatments, will be the filming director. Longo proudly states that the group will be putting their best foot (feet?) forward for the Las Vegas entertainment community as we go to Albany, New York. If you are in the neighborhood, don't miss this amazing evening and benefit for Proctors and the Schenectady Symphony! Ticket prices are $20, $30, $35 and $50. To purchase, call the Proctors' Box Office at (518) 346-6204.

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Jason Graae, who songwriter Ervin Drake ("Good Morning Heartache," "I Believe," "It Was a Very Good Year") calls the second most talented performer on the planet, will do a one night only concert at the beautiful Colony Theatre in Burbank, California, on Saturday, May 14th at 8 p.m. The program, called Perfect Hermany, is a tribute to songwriter Jerry Herman on this, the year of Herman's 80th birthday. The brilliant John Boswell will serve as Jason's musical director. Bruce Kimmel is recording this evening live for his label Kritzerland CDS. Chicago-born Graae has performed in opera, television and film (he even plays the oboe), but is best known for his musical theater and cabaret work. Jason created the role of Sparky in the original off- Broadway production of Forever Plaid, and originated the role of Houdini in the L.A. production of Ragtime. He won Ovation Awards for Los Angeles productions of Forbidden Hollywood and Forbidden Broadway, and was nominated for a third for Anything Goes. He has also been nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh off- Broadway. He appeared on Broadway in Falsettos, the Rodgers and Hammerstein revue, A Grand Night for Singing, Stardust, Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, Strike Up the Band, You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile, and Colette Collage. He won the New York Nightlife Award for his one-man show, Coup de Graae!, and won the 2006 Los Angeles Drama Critics Award. He also appeared in an episode of TV's Friends (in The One Where Eddie Won't Go, where Jason plays a casting director. On October 21st, 2006, Jason joined Karen Morrow, Paige O'Hara (the voice of Belle in Disney's Beauty and the Beast), and conductor Donald Pippin, for UNLV's Hello, Jerry! Celebrating the Music and Lyrics of Jerry Herman, as part of the New York Stage & Beyond series. Jason states that, at the May 14th show at the Colony, a good time will be had by..."well at least me."

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One of our favorites, Martin Nievera performs in concert at 7 tonight (Friday, May 6th) in the Hollywood Theatre at the MGM Grand. The ABS-CBN Foundation International and Codinera-Chua Productions in association with PAE Live! presents Martin Nievera: A Knockout Concert. The famed Filipino singer and songwriter will perform his greatest hits, including songs from his best-selling albums For Always and As Always. The concert will benefit Sagip Kapamilya sa Japan (Saving Family Members in Japan), a relief and assistance program benefiting Filipinos affected by the recent tsunami and earthquake disasters. Tickets are $100 and $75 (not including handling fee), and can be purchased at any MGM Grand ticketing outlet, online at or, or by phone at (800) 929-1111 or (702) 891-7777.

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Another piece of the Sahara Hotel has disappeared - this prior to the already announced May 16th closing of the entire property. The roller coaster, that moves around the outside of the place was shut down last Sunday. This follows the closing of two of its three towers in December of 2009, the closing of the upstairs showroom and buffet, the disappearance of most of the hotel's entertainment lineup, and the nighttime shutdown of the "24-hour" coffee shop. This is a sad end to the almost 60-year- old Sahara, once a major presence on the Las Vegas Strip.

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F.I.O.R.E. Time

Professor Looy Simonoff

The F.I.O.R.E. group will hold their next meeting on Thursday, May 12th. Guest speaker will be Intelligence Research Specialist, Joseph P. Suszynski (easy for you to say), of the United States Department of Justice Drug Reinforcement Administration. We are told that Suszynski has a most interesting presentation. F.I.O.R.E. (Fun Italians Organizing Ridiculous Events) claims to have no real purpose or agenda - other than having fun and spreading camaraderie. The public (the gatherings are usually for men only) is invited to attend...and you don't have to be Italian to join the bunch. Show up. Invite a friend. Enjoy the festivities. Live entertainment is a part of FIORE, mainly because there are a number of talented pros that are active in the dis-organization. A buffet lunch is served beginning at 11:30 a.m. Cost is $20 per person. The meeting place is the Italian American Social Club, 2330 E. Sahara. Because of requests, the ladies will be welcome at both the May and June meetings of the non-club club. In June, on the 9th, Sheriff Douglas Gillespie will be F.I.O.R.E.'s special guest speaker on the 9th. RSVP's are required. If you wish to attend, please contact [email protected] or [email protected] at your earliest convenience.

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Johnny Thompson (who, with wife Pam Thompson, performs comedy magic as The Great Tomsoni & Co.) sent along this follow-up...
On Saturday, April 23rd, the Thompsons attended the Celebration of Life service for Lewis Simonoff, better known as Prof. Ly. Simonoff was a Mathematics Professor Emeritus at UNLV, taught courses in magic, and invented a number of illusions used by other magicians. He was a member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians and the Society of American Magicians. Johnny Thompson reports that there was a good turnout at the service, both from the magic and academic community, with several of Ly's former students present. The event was basically put together by Ly's close friends, mentalist, Paul Draper and magicians, Norm and Lupe Nielsen. The celebration for Prof. Ly, who passed away on April 13th at the age of 82, was held in the Richard Tam Alumni Center on the UNLV campus. Lewis Simonoff was interred in Southern California. No local services were held.

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The Las Vegas Improvisation Players kicks off its summer schedule of improvised music and comedy shows with a brand new performance on Saturday, May 21st at 7 p.m. The "all new, every time" comedy improv show is hosted at the American Heritage Academy, 6126 South Sandhill Road, at Patrick, in Las Vegas. Tickets are only $10, and available for purchase at the Academy door which opens at 6:40 p.m. As one of the area's longest running improv troupes, the Las Vegas Improvisation Players have provided quick-witted, spur-of-the-moment comedy to thousands of Las Vegas Valley residents over the years. Inspired by suggestions from the audience, the troupe creates on the spot hilarious new scenes, songs and poems in a format similar to the popular TV program "Whose Line is it Anyway?" Keeping the comedy swift, fun and clean, these shows provide an enjoyable and suitable evening for the whole family. Founded in 2001 by John Kinde, the Las Vegas Improvisation Players perform "clean-burning" improvised comedy shows, full of fun, laughter and music. The troupe regularly entertains in venues throughout the Las Vegas area. The Players are also available for private functions, meetings and banquets. Weekly workshops are offered for anyone interested in tapping into their improvisation skills or just looking to have a good time. For more information, go to, or contact Paul Lirette at (702) 405-0192, or [email protected].
Special Note: The Las Vegas Improvisation Players is not affiliated with the American Heritage Academy.

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Lorenzo & Shawna Lamas

Hash House a Go Go Griddled French Toast

Actor/singer Lorenzo Lamas tends to repeat himself. The former star of the TV series __ recently married...for the fifth time. This go-round, the 53-year-old grandfather chose 24-year-young Shawna Craig, who is younger than his two oldest children (he has six offspring via three different women). If the bride's name has a ring of familiarity to it, perhaps it's because Lorenzo's fourth wife, a former Playboy Playmate, was named Shauna Sand. If that isn't confusing enough, his 25-year-old daughter is named Shayne. That means there is, or has been, three women in his life with very, very similar names - Shauna Lamas, Shayne Lamas and, now, Shawna Lamas. Lorenzo is the son of the late Fernando Lamas and actress Arlene Dahl, and the stepson of swimming star, Esther Williams. In addition to roles in TV's Falcon Crest, Renegade, and The Bold and the Beautiful, Lorenzo has some musical theater history, having appeared in The King and I, The Fantasticks and A Chorus Line. He also has done a cabaret act at New York's Feinstein's at Loews Regency. Lorenzo has a brief history in Las Vegas. In May of 2006, he appeared as a special guest star in a Jeff Kutash production called Headlights and Tailpipes. The show was the last big hurrah at the Stardust before the property closed. We must say, in his tight black leather pants, Fernando's son looked "mahvelous." Lamas is currently the star of the E! reality show, Leave It to Lamas.

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If you are celebrating Mother's Day (it's this Sunday, May 8th), and looking for someplace to take mom to dine, here is one idea...
You could have brunch at one of the three Las Vegas Hash House a Go Gos, and enjoy specials such as these: Sally's Wild Child Bacon Waffle, with Peanut Butter, Chocolate Sauce and a Scoop of Vanilla Bean Ice Cream; Roasted Chicken Betsy (Benny) - Consisting of a fresh split biscuit with spinach, mushrooms and house-roasted chicken, topped with scrambled eggs and basil pesto cream, all served with griddled mashed potatoes and fresh fruit; Dark Chocolate Blackberry Pancake, served with whipped cream; Mama Margie's Beach Picnic - Mahi Mahi topped with crispy shrimp and served on a wheat bun, all crowned with sun-dried tomato basil mayo and a garden salad; Stella's Shrimp Quesadilla - Flour tortilla filled with scrambled eggs, sautéed shrimp, market tomato, Brie cheese and griddled mashed potato, all topped with basil pesto cream; and more. Guests can also enjoy some bubbly for only $5. In addition, Hash House a Go Go is offering their great regular brunch menu at regular prices. Limited reservations are available. Call the individual locations for brunch hours and reservations. The number at the 6800 West Sahara restaurant is (702) 804-4646. For the Imperial Palace, call (702) 254-4646, and for M Resort Spa and Casino, call (702) 797-1500. All three locations open for dinner at 5 p.m.

And speaking of Mother's Day, May 8th, a regular Claire Voyant reader (who shall remain nameless, by their choice) reminds us, that vocalist, Toni Tennille, will celebrate her 71st birthday on Mother's Day Sunday. Toni's very-successful big-band concert, performed last summer in her and husband Daryl Dragon's new home town of Prescott, Arizona, has inspired Toni, backed by the Prescott Pops Symphony Orchestra, to perform once again in a larger, beautiful, local theatre, the Yavapai College Performance Hall on the Yavapai College campus. Fans will have to be patient, as the next concert won't take place until February of next year (date to be announced). Toni writes that her husband of almost 36 years, keyboardist Daryl Dragon, is in good health, but his tremor, as the result of Parkinson's disease, has made it difficult, if not impossible, for him to play any more. As the Grammy-winning Captain & Tennille, the duo had a string of hits, including "Love Will Keep Us Together," "Muskrat Love," "Shop Around," "The Way I Want To Touch You," "You've Never Done It Like That," "Do That To Me One More Time," and "Come In From The Rain," among them. Tickets for next year's concert, at only $20, are now on sale. Convenience and service fees apply and are non-refundable. To purchase, call (928) 776-2000 or (877) 928-4253. Phone orders taken Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Toni Tennille

Criss Angel

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An open message to anyone who has the letters PR, or the words Public Relations on their business cards...
Your job is not to limit your communication just to your "friends." This is not a popularity contest, at least it isn't supposed to be. It is BUSINESS. You are hired and paid to get legitimate media sources to publicize your clients, for free, whether they be businesses or personalities. Some of you are not giving your clients what they are paying you for. We could name names here, but it isn't necessary. The "victims" of this type of discrimination, as well as the guilty parties themselves, will know who we are talking about.

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Have you seen magician Criss Angel turn a bag of microwave popcorn into a BOWL of microwave popcorn? That is what appears to happen in the new TV commercial for Orville Redenbacher. If the truth be known, it doesn't take a magician to pull off this trick. All it takes is a package of the new Pop Up Bowl. Criss Angel is the star of Cirque du Soleil's Believe at the Luxor. The commercial made its debut during the debut of The Voice, a new talent reality show.

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Mary See

Michael Sarrazin & Jane Fonda 1970

Here is a warning notice to anyone and everyone who deals with See's Candy, or is even considering dealing with the 90-year-old company. Be very cautious if you intend to order anything shipped to yourself or a friend...especially as the weather warms up. Unlike most, if not all, businesses who provide potential customers with the option of ordering merchandise via the internet or through catalogs, See's cannot, or will not, tell you what the shipping costs until "checkout," AFTER you have provided them with too much information - exactly WHAT you are sending, to whom, WHERE it is going, AND your credit card details. If, when the customer is told by the See's employee that the total is more than they want to spend, they may then cancel the order. HUH??? If you are trying to place an order during a certain period of the year, the only option for shipping is See's "summer packaging." Determining just WHEN that period begins, is impossible, as it is not listed on the Web site or in the catalogs, and, as we have told you, even the telephone order-takers won't tell you until after you have given them more information than necessary (this year, apparently See's has decided that summer started on April 25th). Talk about sticker shock! To send one pound of candy (at $20 a pound) during "See's summer," costs $15.25, as opposed to $7.25. We can understand that they need to know how much what you are ordering weighs, and where it is going, but this is ridiculous, as well as a waste of time for both the customer and the See's employee the customer is dealing with! Incidentally, even if you are sending practically indestructible lollypops or other hard candies, as opposed to chocolates (which we know can melt in the heat), you are still required to pay for and use the summer packaging. If you find this as offensive as we do, let the powers-that-be know your feelings...either by sending something other than candy in the summer, or by expressing your opinions to the company. Mary See died in 1939 at the age of 85. We have a feeling that she would not be pleased about how her candy stores are being run today.

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Michael Sarrazin passed away on April 17th, a victim of cancer. He was 70. Although he appeared in many TV shows and movies (Sometimes a Great Notion, The Reincarnation of Peter Proud, The Flim-Flam Man), the Canadian-born actor who later studied at the famed Actors Studio in New York, is probably best known for playing opposite Jane Fonda in They Shoot Horses, Don't They? Sarrazin earned the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Most Promising Newcomer Award as Robert in the Sydney Pollack directed film. (The late Gig Young won an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his performance in the movie.) Sarrazin was originally cast to play Joe Buck in 1969's Midnight Cowboy. When he couldn't get out of a prior contract, the role went to Jon Voight, who won an Oscar nomination as Best Actor in the film. For fourteen years, Sarrazin was romantically involved with actress Jacqueline Bisset, whom he met while making 1968's The Sweet Ride. They later appeared together in The Pursuit of Happiness. Michael Sarrazin is survived by his daughters, Catherine and Michele.

Also, veteran actor William Campbell has died. Campbell passed away last Friday at the Motion Picture & Television Fund's hospital in Southern California's San Fernando Valley. His age was reported to be 84. For those of a certain age, Campbell's face was familiar, although his name may not have been. In the 1950s, he had film roles in Man in the Vault, with Anita Ekberg, and Dementia: 13, an early horror film directed by Francis Ford Coppola. Campbell worked steadily through the 1960s and 1970s, appearing in a long line of popular television series, including Gunsmoke, Star Trek and Perry Mason. In 1952, the actor met President John F. Kennedy's onetime paramour, Judith Exner, then Judith Immoor, at a party. She and Campbell married that year and divorced in 1958. Exner died in 1999. William Campbell is survived by his wife, Tereza, whom he married in 1963.

William Campbell

Bill Maher

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At 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 15th and again on Sunday the 22nd, in the Viva Elvis Theatre at Aria Hotel & Casino, Nevada Ballet Theatre and Cirque du Soleil present A Choreographers' Showcase, a project designed to stimulate and encourage artistic growth. Now in its fourth year, this critically-acclaimed production has created an avenue of growth for local artists and a dynamic, organic dance experience that has thrilled sold-out houses. In addition to two public performances, a school-time matinee for Clark County students and participants in NBT's Education and Outreach program, Future Dance, will be held. Proceeds from public performance ticket sales subsidize this special student-only performance which has been attended by 3,000 students during the last three years. The 90-minute production will feature an array of contemporary artists from the various resident Cirque du Soleil shows performing with the classical ballet dancers of Nevada Ballet Theatre and will include ten original choreographed pieces, five from Nevada Ballet Theatre dancers and five from Cirque du Soleil artists. Tickets are $20 and $40. The $40 premium ticket purchase provides preferred seating (when available) and helps to subsidize the special matinee performance for students. To purchase tickets, click here or call (702) 531-3800.

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On approach...Bill Maher goes into The Orleans Showroom, July 2nd and 3rd. Tickets are on sale beginning tomorrow, May 7th. Elvis Costello & The Imposters, are at the Palms' Pearl Concert Theater on Friday, May 13th. Blues legend, B.B. King brings his co-star, Lucille (his guitar), to Green Valley Ranch for a performance on Saturday, August 13th. Tickets for B.B. King, priced from $29.95 to $64.95, plus taxes and fees, go on sale on May 14th.

Elvis Costello

B.B. King & Lucille

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On Wednesday, May 18th at 7 p.m., the Duquesne University Tamburitzans will perform at the Starbright Theatre in Sun City Summerlin. America's longest-running multicultural song and dance company, the Tamburitzans is a unique ensemble of talented young folk-artists dedicated to the performance and preservation of the music, songs, and dances of Eastern Europe and neighboring folk cultures. The performers are full-time students who receive substantial scholarship awards from Duquesne University, with additional financial aid provided by Tamburitzans Scholarship Endowment Funds. Tamburitzans is like nothing you have ever seen before. Tickets are $18 for Sun City residents, and $22 for non-residents. Prices include Live Entertainment Tax. All shows at the Starbright Theatre are first come, first served, with no limit on the number of tickets purchased. Saving seats is prohibited. Be sure to get your tickets early so you don't miss out. Tickets may be purchased at Desert Vista, Mountain Shadows and Pinnacle Community Centers. Tickets are non- refundable. 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. The theater is located at 2225 Thomas Ryan Blvd. For up-to-date information on Starbright Theatre shows, call (702) 240-1301.


The Scintas

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The City of Henderson will present four performances of The Wizard of Oz at the Henderson Pavilion, 200 S. Green Valley Parkway. The Las Vegas Shakespeare Company will bring to life the classic film, The Wizard of Oz, in a stage performance starring Dorothy and her three companions, Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion. The group will travel along the yellow brick road in search of a return home for Dorothy, a brain for Scarecrow, a heart for Tin Man and courage for Lion. Performances are on Saturdays, May 14th and 21st, at 8 p.m., and Sundays the 15th and 22nd, at 4 p.m. Tickets for all shows are just $10 and are available at or by calling (702) 267-4TIX (4849). The City of Henderson supports the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Advanced notice may be necessary to ensure that appropriate accommodations will be provided. For full telephone, use Relay Nevada by dialing 7-1-1.

The City of Henderson Department of Cultural Arts and Tourism is dedicated to creating and promoting innovative events, entertainment, programming and venues that celebrate diverse cultural arts, enhance tourism, involve and serve the community and enrich the economic and cultural fabric of Henderson. The Henderson Pavilion, Henderson Convention Center and Henderson Events Plaza are all managed by the Department of Cultural Arts and Tourism. For additional information on our programs and entertainment, please contact us directly at (702) 267-2171. Our office hours are Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

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Popular Las Vegas entertainment family, The Scintas, return to the Suncoast Showroom, May 14th and 15th with shows at 7:30 p.m. The Scintas, Buffalo, New York-raised brothers Joey and Frankie, sister Chrissi and "Irish Scinta" Peter O'Donnell, entertain, surprise and provide an anything-but-typical performance filled with music, comedy and impersonations. Their Las Vegas act, which got its start in a bar owned by former Buffalo Bill and present-day ESPN commentator, Paul McGuire, includes "guest" appearances by Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, Johnny Mathis, Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles and others, singing songs audiences love. Collectively, they've dazzled sell-out crowds in Las Vegas showrooms and on the road. Individually, each member of The Scintas has enjoyed a stunning rise to fame. Frankie, recognized as a musical prodigy, appeared on The Merv Griffin Show at age 11. He plays the keyboard in the show and is also a master guitar, mandolin, banjo, drum and bass player. Joey, who originally intended to become a music teacher, developed and mastered his talent for comedy and impressions. Chrissi, is known for her stunning renditions of the big ballads. Although not related, O'Donnell has been a member of the close-knit clan since joining The Scintas in 1988. He has played gigs with more than 700 bands. A family on stage and off, The Scintas often welcome their mother, Mary Scinta, affectionately known as "Mama Scinta," and their brother Tony, a retired Buffalo homicide detective, and his family, as special guests at their shows. Tickets start at $29.95, plus tax and convenience fees, and can be purchased by calling the Box Office at (702) 636-7075 or visiting

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Ken Medema

David Cassidy

Internationally known singer-songwriter, Ken Medema, will make his return to Southern Nevada on May 14th, to deliver his second benefit concert to raise money for Family Promise of Las Vegas, a non- profit organization that helps homeless families in the Valley to achieve lasting independence. The interfaith concert starts at 7:30 p.m. and will be held in the 730-seat amphitheater at Community Lutheran Church, located at 3720 E. Tropicana Ave. Nearly blind since childhood, Medema has performed across the U.S. and Europe for more than 37 years, recognized for his improvisational talents as he takes audience members' life stories and turns them into song. His music emphasizes spirituality and universal concerns such as peace, justice and the environment. After graduating from high school, the Grand Rapids, Michigan- native studied music therapy at Michigan State University, where he honed his performance skills in piano and voice. After earning his master's degree in 1969, he worked as a music therapist at Essex County Hospital in New Jersey where he began writing music about the lives of the troubled teenagers whom he counseled through song. In 1973, the therapist-turned-musician began his career as a performing artist, recording albums for Word and Shawnee Press. Today, the 67-yearold Medema, who currently resides in San Francisco, performs in a variety of venues across the country, including numerous charity fundraisers. His music is available through his independent Brier Patch Music label. Tickets for the May 14th concert are on sale now at , or by calling (702) 638-8806. For more information, visit Cost is $25 for general seating, and $35 for VIP seating ($30 and $40 at the door). Doors open at 6:30 p.m. to preview the silent auction. All seating is assigned.

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Award-winning singer, producer, actor, and recent contestant on Celebrity Apprentice, David Cassidy, performs his international hits at The Orleans Showroom, this weekend, with shows tomorrow night and Sunday night at 8 p.m. Cassidy achieved mega-stardom and heartthrob status for his role in ABC's The Partridge Family. At The Orleans, he will sing fan favorites such as "Cherish," "Could It Be Forever," "Lyin' to Myself," and of course, "I Think I Love You."
During his run on The Partridge Family, Cassidy ranked the No. 1 selling single and record of the year as well as receiving multiple Grammy nominations. Seven chart-topping Partridge Family singles, including "Doesn't Somebody Want To Be Wanted," "I Woke Up In Love This Morning," and "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do," helped solidify his spot in American music and television history. The album, I Think I Love You, was the best selling record of 1971. His solo career has been equally as successful, with more than 30 million records sold worldwide, including 24 gold and platinum recordings, and four consecutive multi-platinum albums. Cassidy has excelled as a songwriter, producer and actor. His television and film credits include the 1978 Police Story made-for-television movie, A Chance to Live, which earned him an Emmy nomination as Best Dramatic Actor. He has also appeared on Malcolm in the Middle, Popstar, Less Than Perfect, The Love Boat, Fantasy Island and, in the 2009, ABC Family comedy Ruby and the Rockits, with his half-brother, Patrick Cassidy, created by another half-brother and fellow '70s-sensation, Shaun Cassidy. David starred in the Las Vegas stage production EFX at the MGM Grand, and At the Copa, with Sheena Easton, at the Rio. The Rat Pack is Back, produced and written by Cassidy and Don Reo, opened at The Desert Inn on July 18th, 1999, playing to sellout audiences for one year. It then moved to the Sahara Hotel in March of 2000, where it was a hit for the next three years. David has also appeared in multiple Broadway shows, including Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Blood Brothers. Tickets for David Cassidy are available at The Orleans, starting from $39.95, plus tax and convenience fees, and can be purchased by calling the Box Office at (702) 365-7075, or visiting

And, on Saturday, May 14th, Yanni will perform in concert at the Orleans Arena. The world music legend is set to present his instrumental hits at The Orleans, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Yanni's concerts are legendary. His live shows have amazed millions on every continent in the world. Now, he returns to the USA and Canada with a concert tour that will give fans what they have been waiting for. Fans will witness Yanni and his world-class musicians as they take the stage to perform his greatest instrumental hits made famous in his shows from the Acropolis in Greece, the Taj Mahal in India, the Forbidden City in China and the Royal Albert Hall in England. For the first time ever, the live show will also introduce some of the music from Yanni's new album, Truth Of Touch, which is the composer's first album of original studio music in almost a decade. Seating is reserved and tickets are priced at $38, $48, $68 and $78. All prices include tax. Tickets can be purchased at the Orleans Arena Box Office by calling (702) 284-7777, or by visiting The Orleans Arena, a Boyd Gaming facility, is host to more than 200 events each year, including top concerts such as Van Halen, Black Eyed Peas, Akon, Rihanna, Brooks & Dunn, and Panic at the Disco; family favorites, Disney on Ice, Harlem Globetrotters, and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus; and a variety of sporting events including the Las Vegas Wranglers professional ECHL hockey team, NCAA basketball tournaments, the West Coast Conference Tournament, plus three major motor sports events each year.


Elvis, Elvis, Elvis

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For all you Elvis Presley wannabes and fans...The Second Annual Las Vegas Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest takes place at the Fremont Street Experience, tonight and tomorrow, May 6th and 7th, from 8 p.m. to midnight, on the 3rd Street Stage. Last year's Las Vegas preliminary winner took first place in Memphis during Elvis Week. Once again, Elvis tribute artists will have their chance to shine as Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc. (EPE), Las Vegas' famed Fremont Street Experience, and the celebrated tribute artist production, Legends in Concert, host the Las Vegas preliminary round of the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest. Enjoy special presentations on the canopy and a parade of Elvi starting each night's competition. VIP seating for both nights will be available directly in front of the stage for $20 but is limited and will be distributed on a first come, first served basis. Photo opportunities with "Elvis" will also be offered to fans on Friday from 3 to 4 p.m. at Binion's Gambling Hall Million Dollar display, and Saturday from 3 to 4 p.m. at Four Queens' free pull machine located at the East entrance. Additionally, Bingo with Elvis will be held at Binion's at 11 a.m. on both Friday and Saturday. Binion's will host an Elvis after-party on Friday at midnight, immediately after the competition that will include Elvis karaoke, special guests from the competition and live Elvis ice sculpting. On Saturday night, Elvis Karaoke will be featured at the Main Street stage immediately after the event. The road to Memphis goes through Vegas, as proven by Justin Shandor, the winner of last year's Las Vegas Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist contest at Fremont Street Experience who took first place in the national competition in Memphis during Elvis Week. Shandor's Las Vegas victory gave him a chance to compete against other finalists from around the world for the grand prize and title of the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist 2010. Justin will make a special appearance at this year's competition as well. Contestants in Las Vegas' Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest will be judged on the best 'representation of the Elvis legacy' in talent, appearance, performance, stage presence, and overall tribute. Judges will consist of Vegas industry experts as well as individuals instrumental in Elvis' life. The winner of the contest qualifies to compete in The 2011 Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest presented by EPE in Memphis during Elvis Week, August 10th through 16th. In addition, the winner of Las Vegas' Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist contest preliminary round will take home a $2,500 cash prize and a Graceland getaway prize package. On Stage Touring, a subsidiary of On Stage Entertainment and creators of the world's longest-running celebrity tribute show, has been officially licensed by EPE to produce preliminary contests at Legends in Concert venues and other locations throughout the country, including Las Vegas. The winner will also have the opportunity to sign a performance contract with Legends in Concert, as well as a cash prize of $20,000, recognition by EPE, the title of Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist of 2011, and selection of other valuable prizes. Launched in August of 2007, the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest in Memphis is one of the highlights of Elvis Week activities, which last year attracted more than 70,000 fans from all over the world.

Fremont Street Car Show

And, speaking of Fremont Street...For the reader who asked about the car show on Fremont Street, here is what we know. The Vegas Cruise Car Display will take place Friday, June 3rd, through Sunday the 5th. This is the car show to end all car shows. The hottest rods in the country will be displayed under the 2.1 million lights of the Fremont Street Experience canopy. Vegas Cruise 2011 includes five city blocks Rockin' & Rollin' all weekend long with free entertainment from the '50s and '60s on two stages and awesome Fremont Street Experience light and sound shows. Free performances are held on two stages all weekend long. An awards ceremony for all registered Vegas Cruise vehicles will be held on the Fremont Street Experience 3rd Street Stage, June 5th at 10 a.m. All vehicles registered in the judging competition must be pre-1972 classics. Entry fee is $30 per car and is limited to the first 150 registrants. Click here for Registration information. Vegas Cruise festivities are free and open to the public. Ample parking is available in the Fremont Street Experience Parking Garage located at Carson and Fourth Streets and at all Downtown properties. For more information, call (702) 678-5777, or (800) 249-3559.

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