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 15, 2014
You can find the current column HERE


Las Vegas - August 15, 2014



James Lee Reeves as Professor Milo Tremley

Mistinguett Productions presents Country Legends ...A Rip Roaring Good Time!, at the Starbright Theatre in Sun City Summerlin on Saturday, August 23rd, beginning at 7 p.m.
It's summer and hot, and everyone is looking for an evening of good entertainment. America's music - country music - includes the all-time greatest collection of top hit songs performed by a talented cast of four amazing singers. The show covers songs made famous by the top country artists, including Garth Brooks, Glen Campbell and Rascal Flatts. Starring - "The Many Faces and Voices" of Bethany Owen; Chad Collins, from Legends in Concert, as Tim McGraw; Ronnie Lee Twist performing as Johnny Cash; and featuring special guest star and headlining country comedian, James Lee Reeves, performing as "Professor Milo Tremley, Marriage Therapist," who puts the rip-roaring into this good time. Bethany will perform voices and visual impressions of some of the world's greatest female country artists of our time, from Tammy Wynette, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Reba McEntire, and Shania Twain, to a special duet with "Johnny Cash," as June Carter Cash. Bethany tours all over the world with her "Country Queens," a full 90-minute show featuring all of her impressions, so we are extremely fortunate to have her give us a sample of her talent. (Watch for her one woman show "1001 Voices and Faces" coming to the Starbright in Vegas in 2015.) Chad will perform his amazing tribute of one of the most popular country artist today, Tim McGraw, singing hits such as, "I Like It, I Love It," "Live Like You Were Dying," " I'm A Real Good Man," and many others. Chad has toured with Legends in Concert as both McGraw and Elvis. He will soon be signing a major recording contract in Nashville, so this may be the last time you will have a chance to see Chad perform as Tim McGraw! Ronnie is considered one of the top Johnny Cash tribute artists in the nation, as well as a versatile country and rockabilly singer. He will perform as Cash, and will also do a variety of country hits from Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson, as well as some other classic familiar country favorites. Ronnie has been nominated for 11 Grammy Awards as a songwriter, and achieved success with his tribute song to Johnny Cash, "I Lost A Friend Today." To tickle your funny bone and fill you with gentle "country fried wisdom" about life and relationships, Reeves' hilarious redneck ensemble would have "Larry the Cable Guy" envious. With his rendition of "I've Been Everywhere," made famous by Johnny Cash, you'll be hard pressed to find anyone more well-rounded than this singer, comedian. Having headlined on the Vegas Strip for years, Reeves has given in to his new passion for songwriting and recording, and we are sure there will be copies of his latest CD available for purchase after the show.

In 1985, Reeves, a seriously in debt and out of work Nashville songwriter was desperate to pay back his credit card debt of $25,000. At a time when comedy was hot, Reeves tried his hand at making money on the comedy club circuit. To that end, he created an exaggerated southern-fried character named Milo Tremley - a name he borrowed from a 1968 potato chip commercial: "Hah, I'm Mahlo Tremley, I was raised on a mayonnaise farm." The character was so well-received in comedy venues throughout the southeast and Midwest, Reeves graduated from opening act to headliner within nine months. In May, 1990, at the suggestion of a fellow comedian, he changed his stage name to Milo Tremley - a decision he would later regret. "Many people told me not to do it," says the entertainer. Other comics - some of whom actually were southern- born and bred (Reeves grew up on the West Coast) - borrowed the idea of a redneck wearing a cowboy hat, talking with a southern drawl and singing funny songs. Some got record deals and became millionaires. By 1996, "The flavor had been chewed out of that piece of gum. Lesson: Don't make fun of rednecks, if your neck ain't red," says Reeves. In pursuit of another original idea, Milo the "country western star" became PROFESSOR Milo - Marriage Therapist. By the time the late ‘90s rolled around, Reeves "had successfully completed three marriages, dating through divorce." At the time, jokes about relationship issues was all he could write about. Now, having lived through 12 years of happy marriage, Reeves doesn't write so much about love gone wrong, but still dispenses the bad marital advice and sings songs about road kill in his live routine. As for the name change, Milo has gone back to his original name. "If you see James Lee Reeves' name on the marquee, you will be seeing Milo, this time only as a PART of my show, not the whole redneck, blue collar deal. Those hats have long since been filled." As James Lee Reeves, locally the performer worked the Comedy Store in the main room at the Dunes, and the Riviera Comedy Club over the years. By the time he was playing larger venues, including The Aladdin, Golden Nugget, and Farm Aid, fueled by his hit 1991 song, "Kick Ass USA," he was being billed as Milo Tremley.

The Starbright Theatre is located at 2215 Thomas Ryan Blvd., in Sun City Summerlin.
Tickets for Mistinguett's Country Legends revue are $15 for Sun City Summerlin residents, and $20 for non-residents. 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! Show tickets may be purchased at Desert Vista, Mountain Shadows and the Pinnacle. All ticket prices include Live Entertainment Tax. Tickets are on sale seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. All ticket sales at the monitor stations are check or cash (exact change required). No credit cards are accepted. For up-to-date information on Starbright Theatre shows, call (702) 240-1301. Be sure not to miss this show!

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Celine Dion

If you haven't heard or read this elsewhere already, it has been announced that Celine Dion is canceling her shows that were scheduled through March 22nd of next year. That includes all her shows at the Caesars Palace Colosseum, and an upcoming Asian tour, citing family health issues. The vocalist had already taken time off since the end of last month, due to throat problems. Those who had purchased tickets prior to the announcement, will get their money refunded. Wonder what Caesars will do to fill those suddenly open Colosseum dates? How about Johnny Mathis, and/or Michael Buble for some of them?

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We got this announcement from Giovanna Sardelli too late for last Friday's column, so, unfortunately, most of the performances have already taken place. Giovanna says...
Welcome to the 2014 New Works Festival! I wanted to let you know about the exciting readings that are about to take place as part of the 2014 New Works Festival at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley. In May, I became the Director of New Works and one of my first projects was to put together this Festival. I was introduced to TheatreWorks in 2009, when I was invited to direct Rajiv Joseph's The North Pool in this same Festival. The fact that Rajiv Joseph is returning this year with his newest work, Describe the Night, in its earliest stages, speaks volumes to the creative home he has found here. This year, he will be joined by Kimber Lee, Melissa Ross, Jahn Sood, Alex Mandel, Lynne Kaufman, and Shakina Nayfack. These extraordinary authors are presenting work that spans the globe. The plays will take audiences from small town USA, to Tokyo and Russia. They encompass a century in their investigations, moving from the early parts of last century up to present day. If you are in the area, I hope you will join us for the Festival. If you aren't able to make it, I hope you will reach out to me to learn more about these exciting projects.
Warmly,
Giovanna Sardelli, Director of New Works
TheatreWorks Box Office, Mondays through Fridays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays, 12 noon to 6 p.m. Lucie Stern Theatre, 1305 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto, CA 94301.
Call (650) 463-1960.,


Giovanna Sardelli

Loretta Holloway by Paul Mehaffey

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The Belton Center for the Arts presents An Evening With Loretta Holloway on Saturday, August 23rd, with reception starting at 7 p.m., and show from 8 to 9:30. If you think good songs and the singers who sing them are a thing of the past, think again. Mark you calendar for the 23rd, when The Belton Center for the Arts presents Loretta Holloway at the city's new music venue, The Listening Room On Main. As one of the first acts to christen this intimate space, prepare for "South Carolina's Official First Lady of Song" to deliver a refreshing and classy evening of Broadway show-stoppers, torch songs, and standards, in an "up close and personal" performance. Holloway's effortless jazz styling's and ability to mesmerize an audience, have made her the stuff of legend for generations of listeners. Tickets are $25. Price includes a pre-show reception, light hors d'oeuvres, and performance, giving you the chance to experience one of jazz's most unique artists. Wine and beer will be available. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Belton Center for the Arts. Belton's new Listening Room on Main evening, with songstress Loretta Holloway, is one that should not be missed. The Belton Center for the Arts is located at 306 City Square, in Belton. Call (864) 338-8556,or email to beltonsc.com/arts.htm.

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Thanks to all who joined Joey Singer, Kenny Seiffert, Jess Gopen, and Nik Mastrangelo, known as Nik at Nite, last Sunday, as the ensemble paid tribute to the music of Nat King Cole. "It's always fun to do the songs he recorded, from the early days of the Nat King Cole Trio, to his later, more sophisticated arrangements," says Nik. As is often the case, there were some surprise guests, including Joyce Carole on vocals, and a good time was had by all. This Sunday, from 7:30 to 11:30 p.m., in the Piazza Lounge at the Tuscany, Nik and His Trio will be performing Broadway, My Way, Part 1. The Trio will once again consist of Joey Singer on keys and Kenny Seiffert on bass, with Mike Mechem returning on drums, as they give a salute to the tunes that originated on Broadway. Among the musicals featured will be My Fair Lady, Guys and Dolls, Cabaret, Brigadoon, Babes in Arms, Girl Crazy, Roberta, and Can Can.
There are so many great songs in this category, that Nik and The Trio plan to do Part 2 in the near future. Don't miss this one. The Piazza Lounge is located in the Tuscany Hotel (on the hotel side), at 255 E. Flamingo. Join the Sunday night crowd in the coolest lounge in town.

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From Lisa Gioia-Acres comes this information regarding the Las Vegas Media Group...
I think you'll all be in for a wonderful program on Monday, August 18th, as our guest speaker is the daughter of Moe Dalitz. Her name is Suzanne, and she has graciously agreed to come and share her Las Vegas memories with our esteemed group. Remember, this meeting will take place at the Main Street Station, downtown at 200 N. Main Street, in the Pullman Grill. Cost of the lunch will be $20, plus tip. If you park in valet, you'll have to go through the casino to find the location. There is another lot that might get you there closer - you'll have to scope it out. I think Joe Thomson will be taking a group photo at this meeting, so be sure to come in your Sunday (or Monday) best! Don and Gretchen Payne, our money takers, door keepers, membership compilers are getting tired, and, they have some health issues they must attend to, and it is time for them to pass the torch. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE consider taking their place at the door. I bet it will take 2-4 people to replace them. They will happily train you in the process of taking member money at the door, and I will handle the emails. The condition is that you must be able to attend each monthly meeting, and be there no later than 11 a.m. Please see Don and Gretchen this Monday to discuss your interest AND accept my thanks in advance. Our September speaker is Blaine Benedict, son of casino executive, Al Benedict . The October speaker is Bill Boyd, and November's speaker is Stan Pahr. These meetings will be held at Las Ventanas. Those of you on the mailing list with cox.net or aol.com email addresses, may have trouble getting these emails as these providers block my Gmail messages sometimes. When I remember, I pull out those names from the BCC and CC them, but that doesn't guarantee it works. Suggestion: get a Gmail email. It's free and you'll always be sure to get those emails. Just a thought. That's it for now. Have a great time Monday. I'll be thinking of you and wishing I were there. BIG HUG from me to all of you!
RSVPs for the lunch meetings are a must. Please contact Lisa at [email protected].


Nik Mastrangelo

Tommy Ward & Daniel Emmet

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ONE NIGHT ONLY! Two very musically talented young men, Tommy Ward and Daniel Emmet, will perform Sinatra, Groban, Buble, and Bocelli, at the Italian American Club, tomorrow, Saturday August 16th, at 8 p.m. Tommy is an 18-year-old Las Vegas Academy of the Performing Arts graduate, who so impressed multiple Grammy-winning record/television/ film producer, conductor, arranger, composer, Quincy Jones, that Jones is now Wards' manager. Joining Ward on stage will be Daniel, whose operatic voice has been heard at venues in Las Vegas, on television's The Real Deal and a tribute to the victims of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Tickets for Saturday's 8 p.m. concert are $20, and are available at the Italian American Club, 2333 E Sahara Ave. Also, for dinner and/or show reservations, call (702) 457-3866.

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The next Composers Showcase, will be on Wednesday, September 17th. If you have ANY interest in attending the late night soiree at The Smith Center's Cabaret Jazz club, we suggest not waiting to make your reservations, as the monthly events have been selling out weeks ahead of the performances. Yes, we will still have a list of participants involved closer to September 17th, but that will be a moot point, and not to sell tickets but just to give credit to the hard working contributors. Chances are good that at that time, there won't be any seats available. You have been warned. Note: Starting in September, tickets go to $25 per person.

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From John L. Smith's Las Vegas Review-Journal column, August 9th...
The gangsters are coming, the gangsters are coming. And, surprise, they're bringing fans.
My first three guesses would have been lawyers, guns and money, but that shows how little I know about the popularity of the bent-nosed set. Mob-Con 2014, a celebration of all things related to organized crime, hits town Sept. 27-28 with talks and book signings at Palace Station. Drafting off the Comic-Con craze, promoter Robert George Allen, writer Dennis Griffin and genuine gangster Frank Cullotta decided to try to cash in on the enduring notoriety of the American mobster mystique. Bloody though it may be, the gangster subculture and the outlaw in general continue to generate fortunes for Hollywood and cable networks.
With the 2012 opening downtown of the National Museum of Organized Crime & Law Enforcement, and more than one local casino resort willing to play up its mob-connected past to spur interest in its current offerings, the Mob-Con gang might be onto something.
For more information, go to mob-con.net. Or just drop by Palace Station and check it out for yourself. But leave the heater at home.

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The Spirit of '45

Dangerous Curves

"In the middle of New York's Times Square a white-clad girl clutches her purse and skirt as an uninhibited sailor plants his lips squarely on hers," read the caption under the iconic photo from the August 27, 1945 edition of Life Magazine. That photo captured one of the celebrations that swept across the country with the announcement of the Japanese surrender, the last country to surrender, signaling the end of World War II. The war had engulfed nearly the entire globe. Nearly 425,000 American military men and women died. America had united to bring about the victory. Today that Spirit lives on through a 2010 Congressional proclamation recognizing The Spirit of '45 Day marking the end of World War II. To honor the Spirit of '45, the soldiers and the civilians who fought, bought War Bonds, planted Victory Gardens, lived with rationing and gave birth to Rosie the Riveter, The Vegas Voice newspaper has assembled some of Las Vegas' finest entertainers for a tribute performance marking the 69th anniversary of the War's end. The free event, hosted by singer Gary Anthony and comedian/impressionist Rich Natole, begins this Saturday, August 16th at 2 p.m., at the M Casino Resort Spa Casino. Honorary Grand Marshall for the event is 92-year-old comedian, Marty Allen, himself a decorated World War II veteran. "I'm excited to be hosting this event," said host Anthony, himself a World War II history buff. "And I'm excited to be part of the show with Marty. Most people only know Marty through his comedy but he won a medal for jumping into a burning airplane and extinguishing a fire." Natole's comedy and impressions have quickly become a favorite, including his own show at downtown's Plaza Hotel. Anthony, famous for his Frank Sinatra tribute, combined his dancing, humor and music to bring audiences to their feet at New York's Metropolitan Room. Joining the pair are, radio show host and show producer, Dennis Bono; Former Lieutenant Governor and owner of the Bootlegger Bistro, Lorraine Hunt Bono; Frankie Scinta, star of the hit show at Fremont Street's D Hotel, with his brother Joey Scinta, and Peter O'Donnell and Janien Valentine; Broadway, Las Vegas and touring star, Eric Jordan Young; The new Las Vegas Tenors, Bobby Black, Shai Yammanee and Lou Gazzara; Dangerous Curves, musical trio of Lisa Smith, Margaret Menzies and Karen Michaels; Soul and blues singer and Nat King Cole tribute artist, Donny Ray Evins; Denise Rose, Judy in Liza and Judy Together Again, and her one-woman show, The Songs and Stories of Judy Garland, coming to the Italian American Club on September 28th. "We've gone all over Clark County," said Dan Roberts, publisher of The Vegas Voice, "listening and documenting the stories of these heroes and it's a real honor to pay tribute to them in this fashion." Doors open at 1 p.m. tomorrow, with the curtain going up at the M's nearly 2,000-seat Pavilion at 2 p.m. According to what we have been told, the show will run until 5 p.m., with a half-hour intermission around 3:13. The event is free to the public, but you must have a ticket (limited to two per guest). Assigned seating tickets can be picked up at the M Resort Box Office, located on the Spa Level, tomorrow, beginning at 10 a.m.

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Rob Garrett - The King of Diamonds

Reminders...
Entertainer Rob Garrett's Hot August Night show at the Cannery Casino Hotel in North Las Vegas (his 5th year for this one), takes place tomorrow, Saturday, August 16th, starting at 8 p.m. Rob was a Neil Diamond tribute artist for Legends in Concert for five years, before going off on his own, traveling around the world and becoming one of the most popular, respected, tribute acts in the industry. Now known as the "King of Diamonds," Rob's shows always sell out, which is a testament to the hard work and perseverance he has put into his trade. Last year, he was named the "Tribute Artist of the Year" by the Entertainment Exchange in Las Vegas. For his show tomorrow at the Cannery, he will be accompanied by longtime members of his "K.O.D. Band," Keith Neal on guitar/vocals, Daryl Slade on bass, Steve Gerard on keys, Jay Boyer on keys, LJ Harness on percussion, Jeff Borree on drums, and Russine Zellner and Rosanna Telford on vocals. Tickets are $10 at the door (get there early for the best seats). The Cannery Casino & Hotel is located at 2121 E. Craig Road, in North Las Vegas.

And, the English rock band and one of the pioneers of rock music, Deep Purple, joins the stellar lineup of musical acts performing in the Rock of Vegas summer concert series at Fremont Street Experience. Renowned for hit songs like "Smoke on the Water," "Highway Star," "Fireball," and "Speed King," Deep Purple will rock audiences, beginning at 9 p.m. tonight, Friday, August 15th, on the 3rd Street Stage, located next to the D Las Vegas, Four Queens Hotel & Casino and Fremont Hotel & Casino in fabulous Downtown Las Vegas. The band got its start in Hertford, England, in 1968, releasing a trio of albums between 1970 and 1973 that catapulted them to the top in concert grosses and record sales around the world. Deep Purple continues to operate on fresh cycles of adrenaline, picking up new listeners from around the world with five new studio albums since 1996, including the most recent 2013 release of Now What?!. There is no admission charge for the outdoor shows at the Fremont Street Experience.

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Larry Edwards in Vancouver

If you are a "regular" Frank Marino's Divas Las Vegas showgoer, and were at the Imperial Palace/Quad/Linq (or whatever they are calling the place across from Caesars Palace this week) to see Divas earlier in the month, the reason that Larry "Hot Chocolate" Edwards was missing from the "boys will be girls" cast, is because he was on vacation (all the cast members take a week or so off sometime during the summer). Part of Larry's "vacation" was spent in British Columbia Canada, where Affinity Auto Group, Vancouver's leading independent luxury and performance vehicle dealership, flew our star there to take part in the city's big Gay Pride Parade. This was the second year that the Tina Turner/Patti LaBelle/Beyonce impersonator participated in the event. Larry reports he had "Such a fabulous time there," where he was presented as Tina Turner in a Rolls Royce convertible to promote Affinity's brand (note the "Simply the Best" slogan on the side of the Rolls in the accompanying photo). Our Larry sure does know how to travel in style!

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Karan Feder by Sabin Orr

From Vegas Rated. Story by Eleni Parashos.
Theatrical Fashion
Costume designer Karan Feder on creating and curating
There's a room inside the Nevada State Museum that's unlike the rest. Its fuchsia-sequined walls house pieces of Las Vegas history as rich and important as the archaeological discoveries displayed in the adjacent exhibit hall. It's the costume and textile collection, a showcase of the cocktail uniforms of yesteryear and the original showgirl and showboy creations of Bob Mackie and Pete Menefee. And perhaps there is no better curator of the fabrics that define the type of entertainment this city was built on than award- winning Hollywood costume designer Karan Feder. Feder is no stranger to the baubles, beads, rhinestones and sequins that she carefully readies for display as the museum's guest curator. And you might say Feder's multi-decade career comes full circle with her position at the museum: She got her start working with Mackie on the national touring company of The Mitzi Gaynor Show as the production's wardrobe supervisor. Feder—who moved to Las Vegas 10 years ago-has since produced costumes for film, screen and stage, and has cultivated another passion: her handbag line. Sold nationally in department stores, Feder's creations-from her two collections, Karan Feder Hollywood and Karan Feder Studio-are now carried at Redstich in Container Park. Feder's handbags are part of the boutique's Vegas Design Stars initiative, a showcase devoted to promoting the work of locals. Drawing from her background and experience, Feder designs her bags within a costuming frame of mind. "I cannot remove myself entirely from the world of costumes when I create retail," Feder says. "My fashion design work is infused with theatricality. It typically weighs heavy in form rather than function."
In Container Park, (702) 900-3698; redstichboutique.com

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Mark Nadler is very excited to announce that he will be doing a special encore performance of Runnin' Wild: Songs and Scandals of the Roaring 20's, on 8 p.m. on Friday, August 22nd at Manhattans famed 54 Below. So many people missed this show when Mark did it in April and May, here's another chance to see it. Please call (646) 476-3551, or go to www.54Below.com to order your tickets. We suggest you do it SOON if you want to attend, as these one-nighters do sell out. Get 35% off the cover charge (when you sit in the main dining room), by using the code SUM54 when you order your tickets. Now you have no excuse to miss this show!!!

In May, Stephen Holden of the New York Times had this to say about the show...
"New York City may be crawling with contenders for the coveted imaginary title Mr. Show Business, but my vote would go to Mark Nadler, the hyperkinetic piano man and pop nostalgist who displays such voracious exuberance that it is a wonder he doesn‘t collapse onstage from exhaustion. In his rambunctious new show, Runnin' Wild: Songs and Scandals of the Roaring ‘20s, Mr. Nadler is out to demonstrate that the hedonistic excesses of today‘s New Gilded Age are a prim little tea party compared with the collective bacchanal of the Prohibition era, when New York was home to 32,000 speakeasies."


Mark Nadler

Wesley Eure

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Happy Birthday to some celebrating LEOs (July 23-Aug. 22), including Will Collins, Larry Manetti, Charisma Carpenter, Gallagher, Lynda Carter, Pam Tillis, Kristin Chenoweth, Jennifer Lopez, Verdine White (Earth Wind & Fire), Mick Jagger, Roger Taylor (Queen), Darlene Love, Sandra Bullock, Dorothy Hamill, Kevin Spacey, Johnny Thompson (The Great Tomsoni), Jerry Van Dyke, Peggy Fleming, Bobbie Gentry, Maureen McGovern, Bill Engvall, Sally Struthers, Jacques d'Amboise, Kevin Spirtas, Martina McBride, Paul Anka, "Professor" Irwin Corey (who just turned 100), David Sanborn, Buddy Guy, Gary Lewis, Robert George Allen, Kathy Lennon (The Lennon Sisters), Tony Bennett, Connie Stevens, Loni Anderson, Catherine Hicks, Geri Halliwell (Ginger Spice), Faith Prince, Herb Reed, B.J. Thomas, Lana Cantrell, Raul Malo, Jerry Tarkanian, Mel Tillis, David Steinberg, Ronnie Spector, Patti Austin, Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull), John Conlee, Eric Carmen, Kid Creole (August Darnell), George Hamilton, Buddy Greco, Dash Crofts, David Crosby, Rose Marie, Steve Martin, Antonio Fargas, Sarah Brightman, Rondell Sheridan, Joe Jonas (Jonas Brothers), Jimmy Webb, Madonna, Belinda Carlisle, Wesley Eure, Robert Redford, Denis Leary, Elayne Boosler, Deana Martin, Lee Ann Womack, John Stamos, Tori Amos, Jackie DeShannon, Don King, Rudy Gatlin, Billy Gardell, Demi Lovato, Judy Thorburn, Kenny Rogers, Collin Ray, Giada De Laurentiis (chef), Sandi Davis, Rod Russell, Piper Goldson, Woody Woods, Cynthia Robins, Donna Booth Koger, Kathy Proctor, Jimmy Girard, Toni James, Sally Porter Coombs, Elizabeth Foyt, Martin Kreloff, Spencer Baker, Giovanna Sardelli, Ronald Labarbera, Perry Palmer, Lou Toomin, Mike Straessley, Doug Taylor and Brenda Weems.
And Happy Anniversary to Jim Semmelman and Ray Disco.


Antonio Fargas

Angel Salazar

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Beginning on Monday, The Laugh Factory at the New Tropicana Resort on the Las Vegas Strip will surely be filled to capacity for the week (August 18th through 24th), because of the presence of a manic-human laugh factory, Angel Salazar, who will be headlining. Featured with Salazar will be Brandon "Gooch" Hahn, and Penny Prince, who is hosting. Salazar is a bit difficult to describe. His Cuban heritage, and penchant for sporting mini-skirts notwith-standing, Salazar's performance is a mixture of street-smart ethnic wisecracks, risqué humor, physical comedy, and audience involvement. Angel is known internationally for his catchphrase, "Sheck it out" (check it out), before, during, and after jokes. Salazar has been performing for more than 20 years, and has been in numerous major films, including Scarface, Carlito's Way, Where The Buffalo Roam, Punchline, and the cult film, The Wild Life. Salazar directed the hit show, El Barrio USA, which played at The Village Gate and Carolines on Broadway in New York City. Angel has opened for the Beach Boys, Billy Ocean, Whitney Houston, Van Halen and The Miami Sound Machine. A native Las Vegan, Brandon "Gooch" Hahn has been working as a stand-up comedian since 2000. Living in Las Vegas has afforded him the luxury of working with some of the biggest names in the industry, including Pauly Shore, Sebastian Maniscalco, Bret Ernst, Steve Byrne, and Larry the Cable Guy. Opening for Larry the Cable Guy has proven that Hahn can rock crowds of all sizes. When he's not doing stand-up, he is hosting his own afternoon FM radio show on KOMP 92.3, and his own internet TV show on www.vegasvideonetwork.com. "Gooch" does his homework. He is out there, visiting every comedy club he can, watching and learning, as he continues to become one of the best locally raised comedians. "Amazingly hysterical" and "outrageous" are just some of the adjectives used to describe Penny Prince, and his rapid fire act. For years, Penny has entertained audiences big and small with his dead-on impressions, and wickedly funny observations. He started his comedy journey in Northern California, and quickly gained a reputation for his ability to impersonate just about anyone. He currently resides in Las Vegas, where he served as the house MC for three years in the hit burlesque/comedy show, Sin City Comedy. He has also been seen on, NBC's Animal Planet, and on Comedy Central. Penny has performed with Andrew Dice Clay, Mark Curry, and Ron White. The Laugh Factory is located on the mezzanine level of the New Tropicana. Show times are 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. nightly, with tickets priced at $34.95 and $44.95. For further information call (702) 739-2411.

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Did we miss the notice informing the public (and/or the media) that the relatively new performance space, located at 1201 Las Vegas Blvd. South, has changed its name from the Viva Las Vegas Events Center to Ron DeCarr's Events Center?

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The world of entertainment has suffered some devastating losses recently. The death by suicide of the brilliant Robin Williams at the age of 63, on Monday the 11th, was the most shocking. He was a person who seemed to have it all - talent, fame, money, a family, and friends...millions of friends...friends he wasn't even aware that he had. Those who knew Robin, and spoke of him, had nothing but positive words to say about the actor, comedian. Among those mourning the loss of the Oscar-winning actor, is veteran comic, Las Vegan Marty Allen. When Marty and his wife, musician Karon Kate Blackwell, were performing at the Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley, California, in March of last year, both Robin Williams and Mort Sahl showed up to have dinner with Marty on his 91st birthday (see accompanying photo). Allen describes Williams as a genuinely warm and kind man. What a tragedy. What a waste.


Mort Sahl, Marty Allen & Robin Williams 3/25/2013

Lauren Bacall 1924-2014

Actress Lauren Bacall passed away on Tuesday, August 12th, following a stroke at the age of 89. Bacall, who began her career as a teenage fashion model, was known for her distinctive husky voice and sultry looks. She first emerged as a leading lady in the Humphrey Bogart film, To Have and Have Not (1944), and continued on in the film noir genre, with appearances in Bogart movies, The Big Sleep (1946), Dark Passage (1947), and Key Largo (1948), as well as comedic roles in How to Marry a Millionaire (1953) with Marilyn Monroe, and Designing Woman (1957) with Gregory Peck. Bacall worked on Broadway in musicals, earning Tony Awards for Applause in 1970, and Woman of the Year in 1981. Her performance in the movie The Mirror Has Two Faces (1996) earned her a Golden Globe Award and an Academy Award nomination. Bacall and Bogart were married in 1945. He was 45. She was 20, thus the nickname, Baby. Bogart died of cancer in 1957. Bacall married actor Jason Robards, Jr. in 1961. They divorced in 1969. In 1999, Bacall was ranked 20th out of the 25 actresses on the AFI's 100 Years...100 Stars list by the American Film Institute. In 2009, she was selected by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to receive an Honorary Academy Award "in recognition of her central place in the Golden Age of motion pictures." Lauren Bacall is survived by her three children - her son, Stephen Humphrey Bogart (born January 6, 1949), a news producer, documentary film maker and author; her daughter Leslie Bogart (born August 23, 1952), a yoga instructor; and Sam Robards (born December 16, 1961), an actor.

Arlene Martel, who Star Trek fans will remember for playing Spock's Vulcan bride, T'Pring, in Amok Time, also died on Tuesday, August 12th. She was 78. Martel had recently suffered a heart attack. In addition to Star Trek, Martel is also known for guest appearances on Hogan's Heroes, Bewitched, The Wild, Wild West, Battlestar Galactica and Gunsmoke.


Arlene Martel 1936-2014

Ed Nelson 1928-2014

Ed Nelson, a native of New Orleans, was an actor best known for his role as Dr. Michael Rossi in the ABC television series, Peyton Place. He died at the age of 85, on August 9th. Nelson appeared in episodes of many television programs, more than 50 motion pictures, and hundreds of stage productions. Until 2005, he had been teaching acting and screenwriting at two local universities in New Orleans. Hurricane Katrina prompted him to move his family to the to northeastern Louisiana. However, at the time of his death, he had relocated to Greensboro, North Carolina, where he had been in hospice care before passing away. Ed Nelson is survived by his wife of 63 years, Patsy Miller Nelson, six children, 14 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

Our sympathies go out to their families. RIP one and all.

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