Adam Taylor / ABC
Tuesday, May 19, 2015 | 11:30 p.m.
The Kats Report Bureau is ensconced in a favorite haunt, Fortuna coffee and wine bar at Westgate Las Vegas. This weekend at the hotel, Suzanne Somers begins her run in “Suzanne Sizzles” at the renamed Westgate Cabaret.
The name of this theater has been changed, but not for Somers’ show, as was expected. The old name, Shimmer Cabaret, was a great name and is now open for pilfering for anyone looking to slap a name onto something.
Somers’ show opens Saturday night (and that night is sold out), with prices set at $79 general admission, $99 for VIP and a $350 “ultra VIP package,” which includes a meet-and-greet with the star after the show.
Across the casino, the production “Elvis: The Experience” starring Martin Fontaine as the King, ends May 27. There are plans for additional, limited-run productions in a venue also recently renamed, the Elvis Presley Theater at Westgate, but nothing has been confirmed or announced.
That leaves it to us commoners to rock it out:
• Wednesday’s latest performance of “Alice: A Steampunk Rock Concert Fantasy” at Vinyl in the Hard Rock Hotel is a benefit for “Vegas! The Show” dancer Lauren Clark (where she is Hershey-riffic in the “Candy Man” scene). The 29-year-old Clark, a favorite in the city’s entertainment scene, is fighting breast cancer, and proceeds from the show will help her pay medical bills (the show is at 11 p.m., and tickets are $30, $10 for locals with a valid Nevada ID). Donations also can be made to Clark at GoFundMe.com/ForLauren.
The “Alice” production is forever evolving, and Wednesday’s show will feature for the first time a Red Queen in Lora Kelsey of “Zombie Burlesque” at V Theater and a Red King in Curtis Goodman of “50 Shades! The Parody” at Bally’s. “Alice” founder Anne Martinez is determined to find a permanent home for this production, and Vinyl seems not that venue. Two shows remain at the Hard Rock venue, June 17 and July 15. Meantime, suitors with suitable rooms are checking out “Alice” with great interest.
• On the topic of Vinyl, Michael Grimm’s CD release party for “Grimm,” his latest effort, is 8:30 p.m. Saturday at the Hard Rock. The champion of Season 4 of “America’s Got Talent” is embarking on a series of shows at Vinyl running Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from May 29 through the end of August. This stretch marks Grimm’s most significant residency since he defeated Jackie Evancho for the “AGT” title.
Coming up Thursday in Las Vegas Weekly is my latest chat with Grimm, who talks of the challenges he has faced and overcome since winning that show’s top prize.
• Frankie Scinta has closed at The D Las Vegas, the final show performed Saturday night. The act once and long known as The Scintas has a July 25 appearance booked at the M Pavilion at M Resort. The act drew a capacity crowd of about 2,000 at the M a couple of years ago. Tickets are $19.99, $24.99 and $29.99 and available through the hotel website and Ticketmaster.com.
• Leave it to Lon Bronson to outlast the hotel that launched his band on the Strip. The Riviera, where The Lon Bronson All-Star Band debuted in 1990, is no more. But Bronson powers on and appears once more Friday night at Cabaret Jazz in the Smith Center for the Performing Arts. Bronson is featuring his usual lineup of fabulous vocalists in Lisa Mayer, Tony Davich, Lannie Counts and Eric Sean. A tribute to the late B.B. King is planned.
Tickets are $30 VIP, $15 for MIP (Moderately Important People) and worth every scent. Er, cent.
Arguably one the coolest joints in town, the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino houses some of Vegas' best entertainment, restaurants and nightlife.
At Hard Rock, it's all about the music. From the light fixtures made out of drum cymbals and guitar shaped door handles to stage costumes and tools of the trade of legendary musicians displayed on the walls, the hotel screams rock and roll. The Hard Rock's Joint has hosted some the biggest names in music — from The Who to Bob Dylan to hometown heroes, The Killers.Aside from the music venues, the pool at the Hard Rock is one of its biggest attractions. Spread out over 4.7 acres, the pool area features swim-up blackjack, a bar and grill, private cabanas, a bevy of secluded nooks, a waterfall and an extensive live music venue with a dance floor. During the summer, the pool transforms into the Rehab club on Sunday afternoons.
The resident nightclub Body English fuses European elegance with a rock star bachelor pad and it often a hot spot for visiting celebs and popular DJs. Vintage rock memorabilia lines the walls at Wasted Space, Hard Rock's anti-club.
Restaurants at Hard Rock are just as hip as the rest of the casino. Pink Taco serves up Mexican dishes, as well as a Central American and Caribbean menu. Nobu, one of five worldwide Japanese-specialty restaurants from famed Nobu Matsuhisa, satisfies a different taste. For round-the-clock cuisine, Mr. Lucky's 24/7, is sure to ease your appetite even after a Vegas-all-nighter.
Vinyl, which opened in August 2012, is the intimate live entertainment venue at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, featuring a diversity of genres, including rock 'n' roll, jazz, blues, pop and even country.
The multifunctional room provides an intimate setting that puts the audience within an arm's reach of the performers.
The space, which is just under 7,000 square feet, can accommodate 650 guests. With a speakeasy atmosphere, Vinyl has an industrial look from its Chicago-common brick and cinderblock, distressed wood floors and an exposed, sky-high ceiling.
An elevated VIP section houses leather banquette seating and offers guests their own wait staff and an exclusive bar. The perimeter features a bar where guests can watch all the action. A state-of-the-art entertainment system offers high-definition screens on both sides of the main stage.