Tuesday, July 2, 2013 | 6 p.m.
Terry Bradshaw’s own post-game analysis after the premiere of his song-and-dance show at The Mirage on Friday night: “It was a victory — not in Super Bowl terms, but maybe a conference final.
“I made a few mistakes. I have to work on my rhythm a little and timing with songs as they end, but I recovered. I didn’t fumble. I talked too much, but I didn’t go off track like everybody feared. With my ADD, I have to cut down that, but if The Mirage says, yes, I can come back with the show, then I will say yes.”
“Terry Bradshaw: America’s Favorite Dumb Blonde … A Life in Four Quarters,” premiered at Terry Fator Theater in The Mirage, and the ventriloquist entertainer was among the first backstage to congratulate the Fox TV sports anchor and NFL superstar.
Backstage, Terry Fator told me: “He joked about kicking me out of here, getting my 10-year contract, so I said, ‘Have at it — I need some time out!’ ” Terry told me he’s developing a life-story variety show of his own like Terry’s that he’ll debut on the road.
NFL legends Jimmy Johnson, Howie Long and Troy Aikman, Terry’s colleagues at Fox Sports, also were backstage. Jimmy told me: “The only reason I came was to make fun and heckle him. What’s he doing on a Las Vegas stage under the spotlights? But, surprise, I wound up giving him 10 out of 10. He made us laugh. He made us cry. He sang his heart out. He told amazing stories, and everybody in the audience said he’s born to entertain us.”
Terry entertained an enthusiastic crowd, many from Fox and NBC’s “The Tonight Show,” with his charismatic production of singing, dancing, comedy and storytelling. Produced and directed by Anita Mann and co-written by Jon Macks, the show included stories of Terry’s poverty-ridden childhood in Louisiana (where he chopped off chickens’ heads and cleaned up a two-holer outhouse), the journey to four Super Bowl rings, his legendary plays, his stint as a toupee model and how he went bust with ostrich and pigeon investments.
Alongside a group of talented Las Vegas singers and Nashville musicians, he performed original songs, including “Goin’ Deep” and “Humble Beginnings,” plus, a heartwarming duet with his daughter, Rachel Bradshaw, titled “Everything a Daddy Won’t Say.”
There were hilarious video clips from friends including Bradley Cooper, Michael Strahan and Jay Leno with their sarcastic words of encouragement. Howie expressed his reaction backstage: “I loved it. I laughed, I cried.”
Also there: the femme-fatale dancers of “Fantasy” and comedian Sean E. Cooper from their Luxor show lending support to their headline singer Lorena Peril and dancer Maren Wade, who had a break from “Fantasy” to be two of Terry’s backup singer-dancers The IQuties. Amanda Avila and Sarah Jessica Rhodes were the other two singer-dancers.
A preview, with two YouTube videos of my interviews with Terry, was posted June 27. Terry won a nearly five-minute standing ovation amid heavy applause. The ref’s verdict on his play: a touchdown.
Terry summed up: “I joked about making $1,500 from tickets tonight, as I need the money. But, seriously, I own this show, which means I put up the money to make a bucket-list dream come true, unlike a previous time in my life when I stupidly invested in ostriches. I’d better not lay an egg with this one!
“I love poking fun at myself; I’ve been doing it a long time. I want to do it for a long time to come, and I love the idea of taking this out on the road and then bringing it back to Las Vegas four times a year. I love entertaining and making people laugh.”
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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