Claire Voyant's Las Vegas Gossip Column



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

Claire Voyant  

Note: This is a past column from August 30, 2013
You can find the current column HERE


Las Vegas - August 30, 2013


Air Supply

Bethany Owen

Australian soft-rock group, Air Supply, a staple of early '80s radio, is returning to The Orleans Showroom for three Labor Day weekend shows, tonight through Sunday, August 30th through September 1st. Englishman, Graham Russell, and Australian, Russell Hitchcock, met in 1975 while performing in the Australian production of Jesus Christ Superstar. Later that year, the duo formed Air Supply and released their first smash hit and self-titled debut album, reaching gold in Australia. After opening for Rod Stewart's tour in the United States in the late '70s, Air Supply had an international break-through and signed a distribution deal with Artista Records in 1980. Their album, Lost in Love, featured three U.S. top five singles, including the title track, which was the fastest-selling single in the world, "All Out of Love" and "Every Woman in the World." Over the next three years, Air Supply produced hit after hit, including "Just Another Woman," "The One That You Love," "Here I Am," "Sweet Dreams," "Even The Nights Are Better" and "Making Love Out Of Nothing At All," which reached No. 2 on the Billboard charts in 1983. Their most recent album, Mumbo Jumbo, was released in May 2010, and their most recent single, "Sanctuary," was released in December 2011. With 30 albums and more than 15 hit singles, Air Supply is renowned around the world. In 2008, Air Supply was named No. 83 on Billboard's Top 100 musical acts of all time, making them the only Australian band on the list. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are available, starting from $39.95 plus tax and fees, and can be purchased at any Boyd Gaming Box Office, by calling (702) 636-7075, or by visiting www.orleanscasino.com. Go, and take "The One That You Love" along.

* * * * * * * *

For those, who might be in the neighborhood of Santa Ana, California, today, maybe they can still make it over to see Bethany Owen's show at the Attic Community Theater this evening.
Yesterday's Huntington Beach Independent featured an extensive article about the talented entertainer on the paper's front page. Bethany, known as "The Woman of 1001 Voices and Faces," brings her one-woman music, comedy and voice impressions variety show to the 99-seat theater for one performance only, tonight, Friday, August 30th, starting at 7:30 (doors open at 7). The Las Vegas headliner just returned home to Huntington Beach, following a recent 5500 mile, two-month West Coast Summer tour of her theatrical stage show titled One Voice. Produced by JRW Group Entertainment, and created by the husband and wife team of Impressionist Owen, and Technical Director/Producer, Jim Whirlow, this unique production celebrates the traditional, zany and fun side of celebrity personalities through the use of comedic parody and vocal singing tributes to some of the world's most legendary female stage and screen superstars, including Cher, Tina Turner, Macy Gray, Shania Twain, Reba McEntire, Patsy Cline, Ella Fitzgerald, Liza Minnelli, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Madonna, Marilyn Monroe, Joan Rivers, Minnie Pearl, Sharon Osborne, Sarah Palin, Hilary Clinton, and countless others. Dolly Parton says, "Bethany does my voice better than I do my own," and ventriloquist Terry Fator calls Bethany "The Best Female Voice Impressionist I've ever heard." General admission tickets for adults are $20. Seniors and students pay $15. The Attic Community Theater is located at 2995 West Segerstrom in Santa Ana. Call (714) 662-2525.

* * * * * * * *

Michael McDonald performs in the Event Center at the Eastside Event Center, this Sunday, September 1st, with show starting at 8:30 p.m. The five-time Grammy Award-winning vocalist and songwriter is known for a soulful baritone style. He began his career singing back-up vocals with Steely Dan. He was a member of The Doobie Brothers, from 1976 to 1982, a period which resulted in him recording some of his best-known songs, including "Takin' It to the Streets," "Minute by Minute," and "What a Fool Believes" (which became a No. 1 single in the U.S. and earned him, along with co-writer Kenny Loggins, a 1980 Grammy Award for Song of the Year. At the same time, McDonald, with that distinctive an recognizable voice, appeared as a session singer and piano player for artists such as Christopher Cross, Stephen Bishop, Jack Jones, Bonnie Raitt, the rock band Toto, and Loggins. McDonald continues to tour and record. Tickets for his show at the Eastside Cannery, on the Boulder Strip, range from $29.95 to $59.95. For reservations, call (702) 856-5300.


Michael McDonald

Jack Jones by Ed Foster

Over at the South Point, it's Jack Jones in the spotlight, next Saturday and Sunday, September 7th and 8th, with shows at 7:30 p.m. With a disarming smile, an effortlessly engaging wit and a vocal style that stands alone, Jack Jones is one of the greatest singers, ranking with the legendary Mel Torme, Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra and Vic Damone. A true Singers' Singer, Jones performs around the globe to sold-out audiences in venues ranging from Jazz clubs to the London Palladium. Jack's talent and commitment to his art earned him two Grammy's for "Best Pop Male Vocal Performance" with his singles "Lollipops and Roses" by Anthony Velona, and Burt Bacharach/Hal David's "Wives and Lovers." His latest release, Jack Jones Paints A Tribute To Tony Bennett, was nominated for "Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance." He was also nominated for "The Impossible Dream." Other hit records include "Lady", "Call Me Irresponsible," and "What I Did For Love." Jack is also renowned as a leading interpreter of musical theater - with acclaimed performances in Guys and Dolls, South Pacific, She Loves Me, and Pajama Game. Most recently, he starred as Don Quixote in the national tour of Man Of La Mancha. Whether he performs with his trio or full Symphony orchestra, his musical perfection and vocal passion unfailingly illustrate why he stands with the luminaries. From the thematic threads of his shows, to his ability to make the largest halls intimate, Jack Jones is the very definition of a complete and total entertainer. The New York Times raves, "He is arguably the most technically accomplished male pop singer..." . There is only one Jack Jones. Tickets for the South Point shows are $30, $35 and $40. Call (702) 796-7111 for show reservations.

* * * * * * * *

Last Friday, it was revealed that singer, Linda Ronstadt, is suffering from Parkinson's Disease and, more than likely, will never be able to sing again. The Tucson-born, 67-year-old has earned 11 Grammy Awards, two Academy of Country Music awards, an Emmy Award, and an ALMA Award. She has also earned nominations for a Tony Award and a Golden Globe award.
Ronstadt helped define '70s and '80s rock, with a voice pure and true. Not many singers would take on Roy Orbison's "Blue Bayou" or many of the other classics she covered, including "Desperado," "Someone to Lay Down Beside Me" and "You're No Good." Regarding her illness, Ronstadt said, "I couldn't sing, and I couldn't figure out why. It didn't occur to me to go to a neurologist. I think I've had it (Parkinson's) for seven or eight years already, because of the symptoms that I've had. Then I had a shoulder operation, so I thought that's why my hands were trembling." The diagnosis was devastating. "Parkinson's is very hard to diagnose, so when I finally went to a neurologist and he said, 'Oh, you have Parkinson's disease,' I was completely shocked. I wouldn't have suspected that in a million, billion years." As a result, she said, she "can't sing a note." "No one can sing with Parkinson's disease, no matter how hard you try," Ronstadt said. Note: In 2004, Ronstadt performed in a concert at the Aladdin (now the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino). It was reported that the singer's controversial political comments drew loud boos and some of the 4,500 people in attendance stormed out of the theater. We think that was the last time that Ronstadt performed in Las Vegas.

Speaking of entertainers dealing with Parkinson's, actor Michael J. Fox, who was diagnosed with the disease in 1991, returns to weekly television in his own series, The Michael J. Fox Show, airing on NBC, beginning on September 26th. The now 52-year-old Canadian-born actor/ producer/activist, is probably best known for his Emmy-winning role as Alex P. Keaton in the TV series, Family Ties (1982-1989), and as Marty McFly in the three Back To the Future films.


Linda Ronstadt

Rob Garrett & Rosanna Telford

* * * * * * * *

Neil Diamond tribute artist, Rob Garrett, performed two almost sold out shows in Sunset Station's Club Madrid, last Saturday afternoon and evening. Rob and The King of Diamonds Band, made up of Keith Neal (guitar/vocals), Daryl Slade (bass), Jay Boyer (keyboards), Jeff Borree (drums), and Rosanna Telford and Russine Zellmer (vocals), both entertained and charmed the crowd, with their repertoire of Diamond gems. We look forward to Garrett and company's next local appearance.

And speaking of Rosanna Telford, following a number of successful nights performing in the lounge at the Italian American Club over the past couple of months, the sultry songstress has been booked for weekly performances at the social club on Wednesdays from 8 p.m. to midnight. Stop in for a listen and a look, before or after dinner at the IAC.

And, while still on the subject of he Italian American Club, Lena Prima, daughter of the famed Louis Prima, will perform at the club on Sunday, September 8th, with a show at 8 p.m. (doors open at 7). To some performers, having a legendary father might be daunting, but not for Louis's youngest daughter. Born into show business, and raised on the road with her famous dad, singer/ recording artist, Lena, has earned her own stellar reputation around the country for her energetic and charismatic performances. Lena Prima has received numerous honors while performing throughout the U.S., including a best jazz song nomination from the Hollywood Music In Media Awards for her original composition, "Silly In The Middle." She also has been hailed by the distinguished American Italian Cultural Roundtable of New York for continuing her father's legacy and representing women in the field of jazz. Lena, who currently calls New Orleans home, performs throughout the country with her six- piece band, and is also currently in the studio writing and recording songs for her upcoming release in the fall. Tickets to see Lena Prima at the IAC are $15. For show reservations, or dinner reservations, please call (702) 457-3866.


Lena Prima

Bob Anderson

And, as we have mentioned in earlier columns, singer/impressionist, Bob Anderson, returns to Las Vegas with two performances in the same East Sahara venue. From Paris, to Monte Carlo, to New York City and Las Vegas, Anderson's powerful voice, engaging style and incredible talent, captivates music lovers of every generation. In 2002, Anderson was inducted into the Las Vegas Casino Legends Hall of Fame. His shows are a tribute to the composers, arrangers, musicians, and singers that make up The Great American Songbook. Vegas... I Remember You, with Vince Falcone conducting the quintet, will delight audiences with a one-of-a-kind musical homage to Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra and a host of other Las Vegas Stars who dominated the Vegas Strip for four decades. Tickets are $25. To purchase, call (702) 457-3866, or pick up at the Italian American Club. For separate dinner reservations, call the same phone number. The Italian American Club is located at 2333 E. Sahara, and offers plenty of free parking.

* * * * * * * *

We are saddened to report the death of Elvis Presley tribute artist, James Rompel. The former Legends in Concert performer passed away in Ohio, on August 18th. Rompel performed worldwide, from the Caribbean to Korea, and also worked for the City of Las Vegas as one of the goodwill ambassadors for the local Convention and Visitors Authority. James was born in Hillside, N.Y., December 4th, 1961. While based out of Las Vegas, his television credits included appearances on VH1, MTV and The Tonight Show. In addition to his role in Legends in Concert, James also appeared locally at the MGM Grand, Caesars Palace, Hard Rock Café, and House of Blues. In August of 2011, the Elvis impersonator performed during An Evening to Honor Sonny West, at the Imperial Palace Showroom in Las Vegas. A friend, confidant and security official for Elvis Presley, West was injured in a fall earlier that summer, and the event was a fundraiser to help him with his medical bills. Rompel was preceded in death by his parents, George and Peggy Rompel. He leaves behind a sister, Natale Clark; niece, Ashley; nephew, Phillip; and several cousins. James was a kind, gentle, spiritual person, who gave freely of his time and talent entertaining seniors, veterans and at nursing homes. Services for the entertainer were previously held in Ohio. A celebration of his life was held earlier today, Friday, August 30th, at the American Legion Post 8, 733 Veterans Memorial Drive in Las Vegas.


James Rompel 1961-2013

Dixie Evans

* * * * * * * *

A Las Vegas memorial service for the late burlesque legend, Dixie Evans, is set for 3 p.m. Sunday, September 1st, at Palm Downtown Mortuary, 1325 North Main St., between West Washington and Owens. Rightfully, this is expected to be a celebration of Dixie's life. She died in Las Vegas on August 3rd at the age of 86. The co-founder of the Burlesque Museum and Hall of Fame, Evans had been in failing health since suffering a stroke in January. Friends and fans are invited to attend Sunday's service. Note: Unlike another weekend "memorial" for Dixie, the one at Palm is free, and has no ulterior motive, other than to pay homage to a great lady and a respected burlesque pioneer.

* * * * * * * *

Sharp-eyed reader/writer, Judy Thorburn (Las Vegas Round the Clock), and the very alert Merrick Wolfe, both caught a typo in last Friday's column. In the paragraph regarding notable things that took place on August 16th, we wrote that Madonna turned 50 on that date. As Judy pointed out, it should have said that the Material Girl turned 55 (which is what we thought we had written). "Madonna was born in 1958 which makes her 55," says Ms. Thorburn, and former Las Vegan, Mr. Wolfe, knew that Madge "was older" than he is." They are both absolutely right. We are glad that our readers are paying attention, even when we aren't.

* * * * * * * *

Puppeteer-comedian, Jerry Halliday, performs his one-man show, Labor Day Weekend in the main room at Azul, located in the heart of downtown Palm Springs. The historic 1920s building at 369 N. Palm Canyon Dr. has been transformed into a charming two-storied dining and entertainment venue, and is one of the most popular destinations in the desert community. Jerry and his outrageous puppets perform in the style of Wayland and Madame with show times tomorrow, Saturday August 31st at 8:30 p.m., and Sunday September 1st at 7:30 p.m. The price is $40 for Prix Fixe dinner and show, or $15 for the show with Full Menu options. Call (760) 325-5533 for reservations. Rumor has it that Mr. Halliday is thinking about adding a Kathie Me Gifford puppet to his collection of characters. We can hardly wait!


Jerry Halliday & The Not So Holy Nun

Dennis Miller

* * * * * * * *

Five-time Emmy Award-winner and crowd favorite, comedian and talk show host Dennis Miller, returns to The Orleans Showroom September 6th and 7th. Celebrated as a witty comic with an entertaining and intriguing stand-up routine, Miller keeps audiences laughing with his irreverent observations. A favorite of the public and critics alike, The New York Times said, "Mr. Miller is exquisitely attuned to contemporary foibles. His material can be scathing, his delivery low-key. Mr. Miller reaches a bit farther than most comedians for the scorching comment ... this smart aleck has an uncommonly sharp eye." Called "one of the premiere comedy talents in America today," Miller emerged on the national scene during the 1980s as the "Weekend Update" correspondent on NBC's Saturday Night Live. After leaving SNL in 1991, Miller moved to HBO, where he hosted the critically-acclaimed talk show, Dennis Miller Live, for nine seasons. Miller is a regular on Fox News Channel's Hannity and The O'Reilly Factor. He was also host and executive producer of CNBC's, Dennis Miller, which featured conversation, opinion and humor. In a career that has spanned far beyond showrooms and interview sets, Miller has also made a name for himself as a film actor and author. Notable motion picture credits include such mid-'90s favorites as Disclosure, Murder at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and The Net. Miller's "rant" books, including I Rant Therefore I Am, Ranting Again and The Rants, have all been on The New York Times best-sellers list. Miller is host of the nationally syndicated radio show, The Dennis Miller Show, airing weekdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. EST at www.dennismillerradio.com. Showtime at The Orleans is 8 p.m. Tickets are available, starting from $49.95, plus tax and convenience fees, and can be purchased at any Boyd Gaming Box Office, by calling (702) 365-7075, or visiting www.orleanscasino.com.

* * * * * * * *

Last Friday, August 23rd, a very lucky slot player won more than $17.3 million on a Megabucks machine at the M Resort. The winning spin paid $17,329,817 on the statewide progressive jackpot. Following the big win, the jackpot was reset to $10 million. The latest win came nearly two years after a woman hit a $12.7 million Megabucks jackpot January 21st, 2011, at the Aria. The record remains $39.7 million, paid to a California software engineer March 21, 2003, at the Excalibur. It CAN happen...not to us, but it CAN happen.

* * * * * * * *

The last show of Super Summer Theatre's 2013 season, the Mel Brooks comedy romp, The Producers, opens on September 5th, and plays Thursdays through Saturdays, until September 21st. An Equity version of The Producers entertained audiences at Paris Las Vegas, from January 2007 to February 2008. Among the musical's stellar cast, from A to Z, were Rich Affannato, Katrina Loncaric, Bill Nolte, Larry Raben, Lee Roy Reams, and Leigh Zimmerman. Super Summer Theatre productions are performed at Spring Mountain Ranch State Park in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, approximately 10 miles west of the Las Vegas Beltway on Charleston Blvd. Advance tickets are $12, and $20 at the Ranch gate, plus a handling charge (children five and younger are admitted free with a paying adult). Call (702) 594-7529, or go to supersummertheatre.orgsupersummertheatre.org, for additional information.

* * * * * * * *

Helene Neville, a 53-year-old four-time cancer survivor, nurse, author and transcontinental runner, will be a guest speaker at World of Girls, presented by Girl Scouts of Southern Nevada at Cashman Center, tomorrow, Saturday, August 31st, at 10 a.m. The event is open to the public and is free. Neville's topic is Border to Border: An Inspirational Running Journey. Neville has dedicated her life to inspiring and motivating people across the country. In 2010, she ran from California to Florida and, in 2013, from Vancouver to Mexico. From these journeys, she has organized the 2013 National Nurses Health Institute Speaker Series, taking place at the Red Rock Resort, October 11th and 12th, followed by the National Nurses Half Marathon at Red Rock Canyon and 5K on Sunday, October 13th. Both events are open to anyone who would like to attend. For more information, visit nationalnurseshealthinstitute.com, and nationalnurseshalfmarathon.com. Neville has gone places few would dare to go, and for good reasons - she wants to inspire others to rethink their own "impossible" dream. Her dream is that her running makes a difference to the world. World of Girls, presented by Girl Scouts of Southern Nevada, runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and features family fun. There will be activities for all ages, live musical entertainment, celebrity characters, speakers and exhibits. Check out http://girlscoutsnv.org/wog/index.html.

* * * * * * * *

Palms Pool & Bungalows, at the Palms Casino Resort, 4321 W. Flamingo, is presenting its Cabanas for a Cause fundraiser event benefiting Animal Network, a non-profit organization that rescues and finds homes for pets in need in the Las Vegas Valley. Monday, September 9th, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., cabanas are specially priced at $100, with all proceeds donated to Animal Network. The Animal Network is a nonprofit organization and network of passionate individuals that work with local and regional shelters as well as private adopters in an effort to place homeless animals in forever homes. Fosters are always in high demand. If you can become a foster family, please let us know. For more information and to get involved, visit www.facebook.com/TheAnimalNetwork, or email [email protected]. Cabanas for a Cause, which kicked off in May, has continued throughout the summer, with each week benefiting a different non-profit organization throughout Las Vegas. All ages are welcome to share their support, but children, 16 years of age and younger, must be under the supervision of an adult at all times. For reservations, including cabanas, daybeds and island tables, please call (702) 942-6832, or email [email protected]. Pool chairs are complimentary on a first come, first serve basis. For additional information, please visit www.palmspool.com, or call (702) 938-9999.

* * * * * * * *

We certainly should have given credit to Tom Donoghue of the Las Vegas Sun, for his photo of Third Eye Blind on Fremont Street, used in our last Friday column. Tom's excellent picture, taken of the downtown mob scene that Third Eye Blind generated, definitely was important to our blurb, and the omission of his name was an oversight on our part. Thank you, Tom

* * * * * * * *


Lon Bronson Band

Last Chance! Lon Bronson tells us that this is his band's last Friday at Boulder Station. "It's going to be a zoo, so please come out and help us say one last "Cheers" tonight, Friday, August 30th, from 9 p.m. to midnight," says Bronson. The farewell to the Boulder evening will feature Tony Davich (all night), Nina D, Jim Buck, Mike Johnson and all the All-Stars. Lon will be making an announcement about their next concert date in September. "It's pretty cool!!," Bronson promises.

* * * * * * * *

In the NiteKings September Newsletter, Richard Perez writes, "I'll See you in September."
As the "Dog Days of August" slowly expire, there in the horizon is the marvelous month of September. The cooler weather, the magnificent lightening storms, the flash floods, Labor Day picnics, and of course, The NiteKings, come out to play! Once again you can find us performing every Sunday, in Roxy's Lounge, at Sam's Town (Boulder Highway & Flamingo) from 7-11. The place is rockin' as Victor, Angelo, Eddy, & Skip belt out those vocals reminiscent of "The Sounds of Detroit." John, Red, Chris, & Tony provide the complete musical background for these Motown hits. We do not use any "tracks" or recorded music, as every-thing we play is LIVE! Few bands can make that claim in this day of "padding" the instrumental (and vocal) output. We will be at Sam's Town on September 1, 8, 15, 22, & 29. That's a bonus, as there are 5 Sundays in September. Unfortunately, there are only 4 Wednesdays in September, but you can find us each Wednesday at The Orleans, in The Bourbon Street Cabaret, from 4-8. (Tropicana, West of The Strip) Mark your date book for September 4, 11, 18, & 25. This place gets busy early, as our fans can't wait to hit the dance floor to the beat of The NiteKings, provided by our drummer Chris of course. Listen to Eddy sing those wonderful lyrics as John & Red put everyone in a comfortable groove. Angelo adds his own special take on his tunes, and Victor croons "Cara Mia" to a standing ovation. The crowd waits in anticipation as Skip bellows "Blue Moon" while Tony slams his foot on top of his keyboard! Ouch, that's tough to do! September is indeed a great month with The NiteKings! But wait, here's a little advance notice that you might like also. On Friday, October 11, we will be performing at The Suncoast, in The Showroom, from 6:30-10:30. I can't wait, and I hope neither can you! So there you have most of our September calendar. Sundays at Sam's Town and Wednesdays at The Orleans. We certainly do appreciate your loyalty and friendship, and we will strive to keep our product entertaining all of the time. Once again, "See you in September!"

* * * * * * * *


Robert George Allen & Frank Cullotta

Las Vegas is famous for its glitz, entertainment and gambling, but it is also just as famous for its past ties to the Mob. Vegas' mob history has been featured in countless documentaries, movies, and books and will now have its own Mob Convention, Mob-Con. Mob-Con 2013 will take place at Palace Station Hotel & Casino, next weekend, September 7th and 8th. For the first time ever, former mobsters, lawmen, true crime writers and historians, and people from the entertainment industry, will be together in the same place at the same time to talk about "the day." Attendees will have the opportunity to hear and meet the very people they used to read about in the papers or see portrayed on the big screen. Mob-Con 2013 is a presentation of Las Vegas entertainer and businessman Robert George Allen and former mobster Frank Cullotta. They have also teamed with Mob Attraction to further enhance the Mob-Con experience. "Las Vegas is the ideal city to host Mob-Con (and for many years to come)," said Allen, "People are fascinated about the mob and, without the mob Las Vegas would not be what it is today." "Anyone who has an interest in the mob will not want to miss this event," Allen added "Mob-Con is giving the general public unprecedented access to the individuals who were a part of this history." The current lineup of guests include: Cullotta (Chicago Outfit & Hole in the Wall Gang), Tony Montana (Chicago Outfit), Andrew DiDonato (Gambino Family), Frank Calabrese Jr. (Chicago Outfit), Kenji Gallo (Columbo Family), Dennis Arnoldy (FBI), Vito Colucci (Law Enforcement), Denny Griffin (Law Enforcement & Author), Warren Hull (Author), Gary Magnesen (FBI), Gary Jenkins (Law Enforcement), Ronald Fino (FBI/CIA), Cathy Scott (Author) and others. Visit http://mob-con.net for updates, additional information and to register.

* * * * * * * *


Tommy Thompson & Jeannie Snow

If you are reading this early enough, The Tommy Thompson Project is performing at the Lake Las Vegas MonteLago Village Concert Series tonight, Friday, August 30th, from 7 to 10 p.m. The MonteLago Village Concert Series is now a ticketed venue. General Admission is $10 per person, and VIP Stage Seating is $20. Present a receipt from any vendor at Lake Las Vegas, and attend the concert for FREE. No coolers, outside food, alcohol or portable chairs are permitted.

* * * * * * * *


KT Sullivan & Larry Woodard

KT Sullivan and Larry Woodard, with weekly surprise guests, continue their Remember Mabel & Bobby shows at New York's Laurie Beechman Theatre, Wednesdays, through September 18th. In this presentation, Sullivan and Woodard honor the legacies of the clipped Mabel Mercer and the exuberant Bobby Short, two icons of classic New York nightclub music.
The Laurie Beechman Theatre is located at the West Bank Café, 407 W 42nd St. (between 9th and 10th Avenues), downstairs in Hell's Kitchen. Performances start at 7 p.m. To make show reservations, call (212) 695-6909.

And while we are in the Big Apple...The Eric Comstock/Barbara Fasano Quartet performs Jazz at Kitano, Saturday, September 7th, with sets at 8 and 10 p.m. Sean Smith is playing bass and Vito Lesczak is on drums. The group will be doing their usual mix of tunes, as well as a centennial salute to the genius of James Van Heusen (1913-1990), who composed most of Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra's most-loved songs, from the exquisite ("But Beautiful") to the irresistibly swinging ("Come Fly With Me"). Jazz at Kitano is in the Kitano Hotel, 38th Street and Madison Avenue (entrance on 38th Street). There is a $25 cover/$15 food and drink minimum (word is that the club has an excellent kitchen).


Eric Comstock & Barbara Fasano

Grant Philipo's Production Show Costumes

* * * * * * * *

A new TV show, called Extreme Collectors, will premier on September 2nd, on Slice TV. Although we don't know anything about the Slice network, or even if it can be viewed in Las Vegas, what we DO know is that Extreme Collections is being touted as "Part road trip, and part treasure hunt." The show features host, Andrew Zegers, touring through meticulously cared-for collections in homes all across North America, and revealing the often shocking values of their collections to the owners. A segment will feature Las Vegan Grant Philipo's amazing collection of production show costumes. Other highlights include, Emmy and Golden Globe nominated actor and director, Corbin Bernsen, who shares his collection of 8,000 snow globes and is shocked when he finds out that his collection is worth more than double than what he expected. Veteran actor, director and producer, Penny Marshall of Laverne & Shirley fame, shows off her amazing collection of sports memorabilia worth millions. A beer can collection in Philadelphia, consisting of more than 80,000 cans, is appraised at $1.6 million. A Brantford, Ontario-native shares his collection of 15,000 videogames, the largest collection in Canada. A Cadillac collection based out of London, Ontario, is appraised at a whopping $12.5 million. And a Florida collector, with a Guinness Book of World Records yo-yo collection, was blown away when he learned that one of the yo-yos in his collection is appraised at $80,000.
You can see a short teaser for Extreme Collectors by going to http://youtu.be/vrJn_BYttcg.

* * * * * * * *


Liberace's Last Las Vegas Home

On Wednesday, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that the home at 4982 Shirley Street, once owned and lived in by the late Liberace, had been sold for $500,000. The R-J article tells that the pianist purchased the residence in the 1960s, and called it home until his death in 1987. The property has since bounced from owner to owner, used as an event space until it fell into foreclosure in 2010. JP Morgan Chase owned the property until it was purchased last week by a lifelong Liberace fan, Englishman Martyn Ravenhill. In 2006, a real estate investor paid $3.7 million for the property, located in a non-descript neighborhood, off East Tropicana, not far from UNLV. The "mansion" (originally a couple of houses joined together some years back) was once a showcase of Liberace's signature over-the-top style: crystal chandeliers, custom marble pillars and etched glass could be found throughout. Reports indicate that the performer once paid $75,000 to transport a spiral staircase from France, and another $350,000 to cover a room with copper tile. A mural on the ceiling of the master bedroom, reminiscent of the Sistine Chapel work, was said by Liberace to be worth $1.5 million, because it was "painted by a descendant of Michelangelo." Recent photos of the property show it as a dilapidated shadow of its former self, with stained and peeling paint, cracked tile and other signs of neglect. Ravenhill said his first priority is to restore the property. He is also on the lookout for Liberace memorabilia with which to decorate the 15,000-square-foot home. (Maybe he can buy back the antique desk that mysteriously disappeared from the Liberace Museum before its untimely closing). Ravenhill says he is hoping to eventually open the property to the public. He also said he is working closely with the Liberace Foundation to restore the property to its former glory. The Liberace Foundation (or what's left of it)? Why is that of little comfort for us? Stay tuned.



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