Las Vegas Sun

November 26, 2015

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John Katsilometes

Editor at Large

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Story Archive

On the funny beat: Kevin Hart looms large at Cosmopolitan; Rocks Lounge reaches for laughs; Bonkerz goes long at the Sayers Club
Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015
The Kats Report Bureau at this writing is Fuel coffee bar at the Hard Rock Hotel, where the home entertainment center is playing video and audio of Bob Marley & The Wailers in concert, “I Shot the Sheriff” the selected number.
The Kats Report: Santa Fe and the Fat City Horns seek expansion at the South Point
Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015
Loaded with A-plus players and regarded as one of the best bands in the region.
A trickle of notes from The D Las Vegas, Penn Jillette and future of ‘Baz’
Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015
If you are Derek Stevens or Greg Stevens, urine luck. Manneken Pis is a great complement to the Long Bar inside The D Las Vegas downtown, for one obvious reason …
Monday By the Numbers: Celine’s standing O’s, ‘Baz’s’ run at Light, AFAN and a whole lotta tail
Monday, Aug. 31, 2015
Monday By the Numbers this week visits the Colosseum, Light, the Spiegeltent and the Joint. These are spaces. The humans are Celine Dion, the cast of “Baz,” Melody Sweets and the crowd at the annual AFAN Black & White Party. ...
Don’t shoehorn Steve Madden into one niche
Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015
Designer of women’s shoes hopes to expand his brand to higher circles of fashion.
SST is a million-dollar gem looking for a million-dollar boost
Saturday, Aug. 29, 2015
There are 1,500 people at Super Summer Theatre on this August night, but referring to this gathering as a “crowd” is not right. It’s a mingling, really, of friends and families who have spread out on blankets and lawn chairs at Spring Mountain Ranch. Before the performance of "Tarzan," we are reminded that ...
Groovy hang with Chippendales; Wayne Newton makes date; AFAN ready for colorful Black & White shindig
Friday, Aug. 28, 2015
In a conversation I’ll always remember, a former guest host of Chippendales at the Rio once told me that the BK Whopper Bar was the most advantageous place to meet women in all of VegasVille.
All by herself? Not Celine Dion, who soars in return to Colosseum
Friday, Aug. 28, 2015
We are so fully aware of Celine Dion’s family and life story because she has grown so naturally into our own Las Vegas community. She is willing to share her life’s triumphs and struggles, during performances onstage and away ...
Remembering J.T.’s welcome of Celine in ’02; Franky Perez gets his Earls all mixed up
Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015
Timberlake met Celine backstage that night, took one look around the lavishly appointed quarters and bellowed, “This dressing room is nicer than my first house!"
Tats and … more tats on display as Lou Lou D’vil joins Melody Sweets’ ‘Coney Island’ show
Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015
In some circles, and in many tents, you can never have enough tattoos. Lou Lou D’vil will illustrate that point Friday night. The 2013 Miss Exotic World is a featured performer in Melody Sweets’ “Coney Island! Burlesque at the Beach!” ...
Garrett’s ‘basement’ comedy club keeps drawing—especially when he’s onstage
Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2015
Garrett's philanthropic organization, the Maximum Hope Foundation, hosts a celebrity poker tournament on September 19 at MGM Grand.
Seeking new venue, ‘Baz’ is leaving Light on Sunday
Monday, Aug. 24, 2015
The immediate message from the show’s producers is that it will resurface in Las Vegas and the move is because the show is seeking a more hospitable venue. The show is a partnership of Cirque du Soleil’s theatrical division and ...
Challenge for Mat Franco is to really ‘reinvent’
Monday, Aug. 24, 2015
The most recent champion of “America’s Got Talent,” the 27-year-old Mat Franco celebrated his grand opening Friday night at the Linq Hotel. The room was packed with ...
Jerry Lewis is ‘Dead Serious,’ and, yes, it’s a comedy
Monday, Aug. 24, 2015
Jerry Lewis touches on myriad topics, including his upcoming film role, another tour of his stage show, his ongoing dreams of his famous friends, and even a brush of his never-released …
Monday By the Numbers: The Judds are set for nine shows at the Venetian
Monday, Aug. 24, 2015
The Judds are the Strip’s latest country superstar duo to hit the onetime home of the Phantom. Announced today, mother Naomi Judd and daughter Wynonna Judd are performing a series of shows at Venetian Theater beginning ...
Rick Harrison of ‘Pawn Stars’ builds empire to outlast show’s popularity
Sunday, Aug. 23, 2015
The star of the hit History Channel reality-TV show is finishing construction of Pawn Plaza, a reported $2 million project that will house 13 restaurants and retail outlets. His objective: Build a mini-empire that will long outlive the popularity of “Pawn Stars.” ...
No guarantee of Britney-J.Lo two-step at Axis; Sabina Kelley leaves in ‘Pin Up’ shakeup
Saturday, Aug. 22, 2015
Britney Spears caused a tremor on the Strip by telling E! Online that she is not sure she’ll extend her contract to perform at Axis at Planet Hollywood. “I’m not really sure,” she told the celebrity news website. “I haven’t made up my ...
ONJ, Susan Anton show up to Showcase; Santa Fe moving from Palms to South Point
Thursday, Aug. 20, 2015
On Wednesday night about 10:30, Olivia Newton-John made her way through a thicket of well wishers to Susan Anton, and both said, nearly in unison, “It’s great to see you.” The scene was the latest Composers Showcase ...
‘Ace’ ace Sam Cordes is an unfettered pilot
Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2015
Steadier in the portrayal of the central character than he is when riding a bike one-handed, Sam Cordes and co-lead Tina Walsh hardly leave the stage in the musical co-written by “Ka” music director Richard Oberacker and ...
Monday By the Numbers: Necks and strings of Cheap Trick guitars; what Wynn paid Sinatra; Las Vegas Club
Monday, Aug. 17, 2015
Monday By the Numbers this week digs into Cheap Trick history as the band returns to Las Vegas at the Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel on Saturday night.
‘Spirit of 45’ a high-caliber event; setting new scene at Beacher’s Madhouse
Monday, Aug. 17, 2015
An oft-discussed venue on the Strip, for its recent history and perceived opportunity, is Beacher’s Madhouse at MGM Grand. There have been murmurs about a supper-club show going into Madhouse. Don’t bet on it. An MGM Grand ...
It’s time for Las Vegas to stop messing around with minor leagues
Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015
Now that the Outlaws have been thrown onto the pile of Arena Football League failures Las Vegas has suffered through, John Katsilometes says the city should settle for nothing less than a major-league team. The team's demise is ...
Las Vegas Club closing begins Sunday, may finish Thursday
Saturday, Aug. 15, 2015
For five years, owners of The D Las Vegas talked with officials of the Tamares Group, expressly GM Jonathan Jossel, about buying the Las Vegas Club. That back-and-forth finally intensified about a month ago, and Friday it was announced that Greg and Derek Stevens ...
‘Rick the Bartender’ might be worthy of ‘Pawn Stars’ spinoff
Friday, Aug. 14, 2015
Rick Harrison will be bartending Fridays and Saturdays at the top-level bar at Rick’s Rollin’ Smoke Barbecue & Tavern when the complex opens Oct. 1. He won’t develop any “flair” bartending skills, so don’t ...
Shakeup in Zowie Bowie as Lydia Ansel departs; ‘Starry Starry Night’ has Cirque twist
Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015
The Kats Report Bureau is about to relocate to the home of Jerry Lewis. Time for an update from J.Lew as he prepares to film National Lampoon’s “Dead Serious” next month. Also on the film front, the Lewis ...
The Kats Report: Olivia Newton-John and her daughter Chloe are making sweet music—but will their creative power stay in Vegas?
Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015
The folks at Caesars Entertainment originally offered Newton-John an additional year on a contract due to expire in January.
Penn & Teller making profits magically appear; David Perrico clears the wall at Rocks Lounge
Monday, Aug. 10, 2015
Penn & Teller are leaving them wanting more in their run at Marquis Theater in New York. The latest “financials” are the most impressive yet for the duo’s first Broadway run in nearly ...
Monday By the Numbers: Dressing up ‘Zarkana’; Rod Stewart renews; free speech at Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame
Monday, Aug. 10, 2015
This week, Monday By the Numbers charts the costumes in “Zarkana” at Aria, the stage attire conceived by Slovenian fashion designer Alan Hranitelj. Elsewhere, we statistically figure in Rod Stewart and ...
Hall of Fame event honoring Muhammad Ali, Floyd Mayweather Jr. is a rare 15-rounder
Sunday, Aug. 9, 2015
The Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame gala at Caesars Palace honored Lennox Lewis, Muhammad Ali, “Marvelous” Marvin Hagler, Felix Trinidad, Marco Antonio Barrera, Roger Mayweather, Johnny Tapia, Gene Fullmer and ...
Former mayor catches up with times; hotel may turn back clock
Sunday, Aug. 9, 2015
Oscar Goodman, the man who ran Las Vegas without a computer, is now answering emails. And the Fremont is preparing for a milestone birthday ...
Mike Tyson to ‘dig deep’ in presenting Muhammad Ali at Hall of Fame gala
Friday, Aug. 7, 2015
Mike Tyson doesn’t need long to respond to this hypothesis: If Muhammad Ali and he had squared off when both fighters were at their athletic peak, how would the fight have turned out?
“Nobody beats Ali in his prime. Nobody,” Tyson said during ...
The Kats Report: Martin Kaye of 'Million Dollar Quartet' launches a solo show
Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015
The Brit juggles longtime MDQ gig with a new show, Odd Socks.
Sean & John back in the saddle with Steven Tyler; Elvis residency in Las Vegas still a possibility
Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015
The ever-scurrying tap-dance tandem of Sean and John Scott were among the members of “Absinthe” to meet Steven Tyler on Sunday night after the show’s performance at Caesars Palace. This was not the first meeting among the twins and Tyler, but it was ...
Guitar great Doug Aldrich vaults from ‘Vault’; Wall of Sound encloses Rocks Lounge
Monday, Aug. 3, 2015
“Raiding the Rock Vault,” still tirelessly churning out the classics at Tropicana Theater, is seeking to replace one of its real rockers in guitarist Doug Aldrich.
Monday By the Numbers: ‘Million Dollar Quartet’ reaches a grand mark at Harrah’s
Monday, Aug. 3, 2015
The Kats Report this week focuses on “Million Dollar Quartet,” the musical at Harrah’s that is celebrating its 1,000th performance Tuesday night. We met the cast in January 2013 during their first full rehearsal.
Horsford out to make a difference, any way he can
Monday, Aug. 3, 2015
Former U.S. Rep. Steven Horsford was forced to do some unanticipated soul-searching in November, after he was defeated by Republican Assemblyman Cresent Hardy in the race to represent Nevada’s 4th Congressional District. He would become managing director of the R&R Resources+ office in the D.C.-Maryland-Virginia region ...
Steve Wynn looking for a ‘belter’ to fill void left by ‘Showstoppers’ singer
Saturday, Aug. 1, 2015
“Steve Wynn’s Showstoppers” auditions are continuing for a principal female singer in the production at Encore Theater in Wynn Las Vegas. The departing cast member is Kerry O’Malley ...
Big-cat illusionist Dirk Arthur lands on his feet at Westgate Las Vegas
Friday, July 31, 2015
It’s not easy to pinpoint the number of lives for Dirk Arthur, but it is likely about the same number as a cat. One of the city’s great survivors, Arthur has lived through yet another hotel ownership change and closure and ...
First responder marks rapid-moving events of Cosmopolitan fire
Thursday, July 30, 2015
It’s rare that a first call for a fire at a fire station is made by a firefighter running into that station. The front door of Station 32 is a little less than 500 feet from ...
Breaking ‘Baz’: A musical in a nightclub aims to shake up the Vegas entertainment scene
Thursday, July 30, 2015
Will the new Baz musical at Light Nightclub succeed when Broadway shows and other nightclub productions have failed?
Donny Osmond recovering from throaty concerns; ‘Absinthe’ joins the (night) club
Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Even the term sounds uncomfortable: bleeding polyp. It is the vocal condition from which Donny Osmond has been suffering for the past several weeks. At issue is a lesion on his right vocal chord that ...
If this is it for Rush, they leave on a high note
Sunday, July 26, 2015
Rush-infused memories are so plentiful and indelible, we don’t always know where to begin or end. On Saturday night, the band took that task themselves, rolling in reverse from finish to start during its “R40 Tour” stop.
Vegas needs its own pro sports team, not someone else’s
Sunday, July 26, 2015
Just this month, talk bubbled out of Milwaukee that the Bucks might be willing to move to the under-construction Las Vegas Arena if the Wisconsin Senate could not approve funding for a new arena. Once more, the specter of Las Vegas as a home for a pro team clouded the reality of a franchise’s relationship with its home city ...
Fountains incident recalls night at Caesars Palace starring Shecky Greene
Friday, July 24, 2015
In a slice of Strip lore that might be lost to time for many visitors to Las Vegas, the greatest fountain crashing ever was the 1968 drive into the Caesars Palace fountains by venerable comedian Shecky Greene ...
On 40th anniversary, 40 reasons to still dig Rush
Thursday, July 23, 2015
The timeless band Rush, my fave, fave, favorite for nearly all of its 40 years of existence, is back for its “R40” anniversary tour Saturday night at MGM Grand Garden Arena.
The Kats Report: Monte Carlo’s new theater could remake the Strip’s concert look
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
For MGM Resorts, the new theater adds versatility and volume to its entertainment options.
‘Vegas Nocturne’ still alive — in New York; Mac King faces down Penn & Teller on ‘Fool Us’
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
The Spiegelworld Production “Vegas Nocturne” lives on, if in a scaled-back form. The show that closed a year ago at Rose. Rabbit. Lie. in the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is set for a one-off Thursday night at the Slipper Room in New York.
Monday By the Numbers: Inside the David Saxe Productions empire
Monday, July 20, 2015
This week, Monday By the Numbers crunches the stats related to the shows in David Saxe Productions. Its signature production, “Vegas! The Show,” celebrates its fifth anniversary this month at Saxe Theater at Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood.
CEO wants to bring downtown out of the ’70s
Monday, July 20, 2015
Jim Simms remembers the moment, about 16 years ago, when he was a newly hired casino marketing official at Paris Las Vegas. He was walking along Le Boulevard at the then-new hotel, just past ...
Lon Bronson trumpets reunion with Drew Carey; Penn Jillette has one word for The Donald
Sunday, July 19, 2015
Lon Bronson’s All-Star Band played its latest sold-out show at Cabaret Jazz on Saturday night. During the performance, “The Price Is Right” host Drew Carey, a longtime friend of Bronson’s, strode onstage and sang ...

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