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October 1, 2014

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Voice concerns prompt Brady to call off shows at The Venetian

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Erik Kabik/Retna/www.erikkabikphoto.com

Wayne Brady at the 70th birthday celebration for Mayor Oscar Goodman at the Golden Nugget on July 31.

For the month of October, Wayne Brady is taking what’s behind Door No. 2, which opens to the Tropicana Pavilion for “Let’s Make a Deal.”

But he’s leaving a pretty good prize in the box, his regular show at The Venetian.

Bowing to a schedule that put too great a demand on his already taxed voice, Brady has pulled out of every performance in October and early November at The Venetian Showroom for his regular music-and-improv gig, “Making It Up.” He’s out through Nov. 12; refunds are available through The Venetian box office (call direct, 414-9000).

In a statement, a spokeswoman for Brady said: “Due to vocal strains, Wayne Brady has decided to postpone his show, ‘Making It Up,’ for the month of October to give his singing voice a rest. He will continue to shoot ‘Let’s Make a Deal’ and will return to The Venetian in November, where his show will continue through September 2010.”

The nationally televised game show replaces “Guiding Light,” which was on the air for about 150 years, and begins airing on CBS (KLAS Channel 8 in Las Vegas) on Monday. Taping at the Trop began two weeks ago, and the twice-daily regimen of serving as a high-energy game show host and frontman for his own demanding nightly Strip production proved too demanding for Brady, even if he is a fit 37.

The Venetian Showroom will still be home to the Chazz Palminteri one-man show, “A Bronx Tale,” from Wednesday through Oct. 18 (dark Oct. 13-14). So the loss at the hotel is tempered by ChazzFest ’09, but members of Brady’s supporting cast have been left scrambling to find work for a few weeks. For them, it's something of a "zonk," and there's no home version of the game.

Bobby! The Musical

Made official today was Bobby Slayton’s departure from -- Where? Where kids? –- the Trop. Slayton had no luck on the southeast corner of Tropicana Avenue and the Strip, where he couldn’t make his searingly funny (but not for everyone) stand-up act work at Hooters or the Tropicana. His last show was Sunday. “The Pitbull of Comedy,” an angry sort with a heart o’ gold, is working on a sitcom based on his relationship with his daughter (“A ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’-esque show” is how he describes it), and on Nov. 13 records a Showtime stand-up special at UC Irvine.

Slayton was originally under contract at the Trop through May 2010, but sagging business combined with a change in ownership at the old hotel (where Alex Yemenidjian has been plotting a multimillion-dollar makeover to a South Beach theme since taking over on July 1) hastened Slayton’s departure from the Bobby Slayton Room, formerly the Comedy Stop at the Trop. Also being swept out are a Beatles tribute act called Penny Lane and Rich Natole’s “Voices of a Generation” act (if my seemingly confident listing of those acts implies I have actually seen either of them perform, you’re wrong).

“The way things are going in Vegas, it’s time for me to get back into the TV and movie stuff,” said Slayton, whose Trop show was a financial partnership with hypnotist Anthony Cools. “Dreamgirls,” from 2006, in which he portrayed a Joey Bishop-type comic, was Slayton’s last film role. Slayton says he’ll be back, maybe next spring, for a rematch with Vegas. I hope so. Until then, I’ll miss his bite.

Post ’em notes

New Harrah’s President Rick Mazer has already been in town for three weeks. Mazur is in charge of the five properties (Harrah’s, Bill’s Gambling Hall & Casino, O’Shea’s, Flamingo and Imperial Palace) once presided over by Don Marrandino, who has departed for an expanded role in Atlantic City. Mazur has finally attended his first Vegas entertainment event, media night for “Mental” at O’Shea’s. To his credit, he's pacing himself. … “The Biggest Tattoo Show on Earth,” set for Friday through Sunday at Mandalay Bay, features dozens of tattoo-themed workshops. Among them: History of Scarification (Primitive to Modern), Flesh Hook Suspension, Religious Black & Gray Tattooing, Quality Body Jewelry 101, Japanese Bonage and From Voodoo to Vogue. ... During our conversation on Tuesday, Adam Gentile -- GM of both the Palomino Club and Club Paradise -- said he had heard nothing regarding the lawsuit filed by James Hackett of Andover, Mass., who claims his American Express card was lifted last October and he was wrongly charged nearly $30,000 in bar fees and personal attention from a sextet of dancers at Club Paradise. … Matt Goss is throwing gas -- NO! GOSS -- on the fire with this Gossification project we started a while back. He’s asked everyone following him on Twitter (@mattgoss) to send their most Gossirific Gossisms to me @johnnykats. More than 20 have been pitched out there. One fan sent, “If you’re Gossy and you know it, clap your hands!” Gossome, just Gossome. ... Speaking of game shows, when he owned Vegas World, Bob Stupak wanted to bring a game show into the hotel's showroom. There were a half-dozen rehearsals before the idea was scuttled, one of Stupak's many unrealized dreams. Also, a person who knew Stupak well (like, really well) swears that he had bluebirds tattooed around each nipple. I hate having to report that, y'know?

Follow John Katsilometes on Twitter at twitter.com/JohnnyKats.

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