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July 26, 2021

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Curtain Up: ‘Menopause The Musical,’ ‘An Evening with Whitney’ and more Vegas showbiz news

Whitney Houston Hologram Concert

Courtesy Base Hologram

“An Evening with Whitney: The Whitney Houston Hologram Concert” has a new start date and a new showroom.

The longest-running scripted musical on the Las Vegas Strip is reopening tonight at Harrah’s Las Vegas and the only original member left in the cast since “Menopause The Musical” first debuted here 15 years ago at the Las Vegas Hilton is naturally very excited to be back onstage.

“We’re pretty much picking up where we left off,” says Vita Corimbi, a multi-talented, Emmy Award-winning singer and musician who portrays “Earth Mother” in the comedy and music-driven show. “I think audiences have been really clamoring to get out and see things and be entertained, and we can’t wait to make them feel welcome and make them laugh, which is the greatest gift on the planet.”

Click to enlarge photo

The four stars of "Menopause The Musical" at Harrah's.

“Menopause” returns to its previous home at the Harrah’s Cabaret for performances at 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday plus additional matinees at 4 p.m. Tuesday and Saturday. It was an off-Broadway sensation before producers Alan and Kathi Glist brought it to Las Vegas and it's been seen by nearly 17 million people worldwide including more than 5,600 performances here.

It infamously sounds like a show that men would ignore, but it actually attracts mostly couples along with girls-night-out groups, and the instantly recognizable and timeless music — comedic parodies of hits from the 1960s through the 1980s — adds a lot of fun.

“My husband was one of those guys and the finally he was, ‘Fine, I’ll come see you in the show,’ and he’s probably seen it 50 times. He brings friends all the time, tells them, ‘Dude, you’re gonna love it, it’s hilarious.’ And they do,” Corimbi says. “I think it’s lasted for a lot of reasons. People recognize the songs but they also love feeling like they are part of the show. There are four women in the show, four iconic characters, and we call the audience the fifth girlfriend.”

Nearby at Harrah’s Showroom, “An Evening with Whitney: The Whitney Houston Hologram Concert” will finally make its Las Vegas debut on October 26 per an announcement this week. This innovative production created by Base Entertainment, GFour Productions and the late superstar singer’s estate was originally unveiled in spring 2020 and primed for the Flamingo Showroom starting last April. Like Harrah’s, the Flamingo is operated by Caesars Entertainment and the "Whitney" relocation is part of the company’s ongoing venue and show shuffle. Houston’s voice will be the star, backed by a live band, backup singers and dancers plus loads of special effects. Tickets range from $49 to $89 and will go on sale Friday.

Derek Hough: No Limit,” which I reported on earlier this week, also pre-emptively moved out of the Flamingo Showroom thanks to pandemic craziness and will now open at the Venetian’s Summit Showroom on September 22. Summit is the new name of the Sands Showroom, which will come alive again on August 19 with the After Party musical nostalgia spectacular featuring members of Boyz II Men, Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC.

The Bronx Wanderers, the fantastic band that has performed at the South Point, Bally’s, the Linq and Harrah’s over the last five years, has found an appropriate new home for its rock-and-roll extravaganza at the Westgate. The group will open a new residency on September 20 at the Westgate Cabaret, slated for a schedule of shows at 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 5:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday. That doesn’t appear to provide any days off, so expect things to settle a bit once the Wanderers get situated in this busy room that also currently houses “The Magic of Jen Kramer” and “Soul of Motown” and will soon welcome back the comedy of George Wallace and “Sexxy: The Show.” The old school elements of both the band and the property are a perfect fit.

Headliner extraordinaire Bruno Mars postponed this coming weekend’s residency shows at Park Theater at Park MGM “due to unforeseen circumstances.” The new dates are August 27 and 28, and Mars is expected to return to the Strip next weekend on July 30 and 31. Still no official news on the return of his theater mate Lady Gaga, but her bandleader Brian Newman will be back in Las Vegas for his acclaimed late-night gig at Park MGM’s NoMad Library on August 12-14 and 19-21. The edgy jazz trumpeter and vocalist anchors Gaga’s “Jazz & Piano” portion of her residency and his sex comeback shows could pave the way for her return later this year. There are currently no New Year’s Eve shows on the calendar at Park Theater.

New concert announcements this week include: Earl Turner returns to the stage at the South Point Showroom August 6 and 7; Alejandro Fernández has added a second show to his Vegas visit at MGM Grand Garden Arena, grabbing up the venue for September 16; Randy Bachman and Burton Cummings reunite to perform the music of the Guess Who, Bachman-Turner Overdrive and Burton Cummings at the Smith Center’s Reynolds Hall on September 24; comedian Bert Kreischer takes over the Park Theater on September 25; Lagwagon performs at Brooklyn Bowl at the Linq Promenade on November 19; Daughtry will play with Sevendust, Tremonti and Travis Bracht at the Theater at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas on December 5; Pink Martini will perform at Encore Theater at Wynn on December 15; Journey will be back for one night only at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace on December 18 for a special symphonic performance; John Mayer will make a tour stop at MGM Grand Garden Arena on March 11; and as you’ve no doubt already heard, the Killers will return to T-Mobile Arena on August 22, 2022.

Pollen, a travel and entertainment company that has recently unleashed events in Las Vegas with Migos and J Balvin, has teamed with Los Angeles party crew Emo Nite to bring a multi-day event featuring Avril Lavigne, Travis Barker, 3OH!3, Mayday Parade and more to various Vegas venues including Virgin, Mandalay Bay, Area15 and other sites on October 14-17. For more info visit pollen.co.

Due to overwhelming response to the recent announcement of the Las Vegas Philharmonic’s upcoming season, the orchestra has announced its adding an additional concert that will preclude the previously planned opening night at Reynolds Hall. The music will return on October 23 featuring Aaron Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man” and Joan Tower’s “Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman,” plus Dvorak’s “Cello Concerto” featuring new artist-in-residence Joshua Roman and Tchaikovsky’s “Fifth Symphony.” For more information, visit lvphil.org.

Live music returns to Arizona Charlie’s on Decatur Boulevard with a performance by Eagles tribute band American Eagle USA on August 7 at the Naughty Ladies Saloon. Admission is free and guests must be 21 or over. Entertainment continues there every Saturday from 9 p.m. until 1 a.m.