Broadway To Vegas



Copyright: August 3, 2003
By: Laura Deni


William Shatner gets top dollar for an autograph
The Trekkers have landed.

This week-end the Las Vegas Hilton Hotel looks like another planet. That's because the official Star Trek convention beamed in on Friday. For three days over 4,000 devoted followers have been living and breathing all things Klingon - following William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy where no man has gone before - or anywhere the two headliners wanted the lemmings to follow.

Leonard Nimoy ties with Shatner in commanding big bucks
Fans dined on a Klingon Feast beginning with a Klingon Blood Wine Goblet Toast, followed by a bowl of Skull Stew (clam chowder), and Targ platters (ribs). Souvenir Klingon menu included.

On Friday Robert Picardo introduce the new multimillion-dollar attraction Borg Invasion 4D, slated to open at Star Trek: The Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton in spring 2004.

Billed as a "darker, edgier" experience, Borg Invasion 4D features Picardo reprising his role as the hologram doctor. Also in the 3-D film are Alice Krige, and Kate Mulgrew.

Paramount Parks, a division of Viacom Entertainment Group, which owns Paramount Pictures, producer of the various Star Trek television shows and movies, developed Star Trek: The Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton five years ago. The company also is behind the new ride, which is an addition to the existing popular attraction.

The new ride consists of a 3-D film produced by Threshold Digital Entertainment along with sensory special effects, props from Star Trek shows and live actors.

Marina Sirtis
"As visitors tour a futuristic research facility, the terrifying drones of the Borg collective attempt to capture and assimilate them using 24th-century cybernetic technology," reads a Paramount Parks statement.

This morning a charity breakfast took place, and a sold out actor's workshop taught by Picardo and Ethan Phillips. Participants were provided with scripts ahead of time. Then they "performed" scenes in class with Piccardo and Phillips delivering the critique.

Star Trek conventions are serious for the fans and big business for the stars. Events sell out. Obtaining autographs and photographs is a major incentive to attend.

If purchased before the show, autographed tickets were priced from $15 to $60. A warning came with the promo hinting that prices could be higher at the convention. Shatner and Nimoy were the only ones commanding the $60 tab.

Getting face time with a star immortalized by a flash bulb comes at a higher price. To get your picture taken with one of the stars will set you back anywhere from $40-$70. Again, the two that bring in $70 a snap are Shatner and Nimoy.

Commanding $60 for a picture are; Kate Mulgrew and Robert Beltran.

Kate Mulgrew was sensational as Katharine Hepburn in Tea at Five Star Trek fans eagerly pay $60 to have their picture taken with her
Fans eagerly pony up $50 to get their picture taken with; James Doohan, Nichelle Nichols, Walter Koenig, George Takei,Connor Trinneer, Anthony Montgomery, J.G. Hertzler and Robert O'Reilly ("together with you! $50") and Rene Auberjonois/Armin Shimerman "Here's the chance to get your photo with these famed stars who made TV Trek history as Quark and Odo. They will both be in the picture with you! $50."

$45 will get your face in the same frame as Roxann Dawson.

The lines are long to spent $40 and be posed next to; Alexander Siddig, Robert Picardo, Ethan Ohillips, Marina Sirtis, Tim Russ, Robbie McNeil, Nicole deBoer, John Billingsley, Nana Visitor, Dominick Keating, Cirroc Lofton, or Corin Nemic.

Robert Picardo
There can be big money in collectibles. Richard Arnold billed as "the world's leading authority on all-things Star Trek and a 15 year associate of Gene Roddenberry, is available to provide appraisals for your rare Star Trek memorabilia."

Robert Picardo and Robert Duncan McNeill, both of Star Trek: Voyager are also singers who performed their Robert/Robbie Show. Max Grodenchik (Rom) and Chase Masterson (Leeta) and Tim Russ (Tuvok) entertained at Friday night's party. Saturday's Happy Hour featured Rene Auderjonois and Armin Shimerman (Odo and Quark of DS9) in their performance "act".

Star attending included:

From the original classic cast: WILLIAM SHATNER Captain Kirk, LEONARD NIMOY Mr. Spock, JAMES DOOHAN Scotty, NICHELLE NICHOLS Uhura on TOS, WALTER KOENIG Chekov, GEORGE TAKEI Sulu, GRACE LEE WHITNEY Yoeman Janice Rand.

Michael Dorn
From STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION were: MICHAEL DORN Worf, MARINA SIRTIS Counselor Troi, WIL WHEATON Wesley on ST:TNG, Wil, it was pointed out, has "since become one of the web's most popular celebrity writers, a talent featured in his new book which will be available at the convention. Wil will be on hand during the convention to meet fans and also will be doing one of his very well received readings on stage."


From STAR TREK: VOYAGER; KATE MULGREW Captain Janeway, ROBERT BELTRAN Chakotay of Voyager, ROBERT PICARDO Voyager's Doctor, TIM RUSS Tuvok, ROBBIE DUNCAN McNEILL Paris, ETHAN PHILLIPS Neelix, ROXANN DAWSON Torres, MANU INTIRAYMI Icheb from Star Trek: Voyager and more recently on "24".

ENTERPRISE: DOMINIC KEATING Lt. Reed of Enterprise, CONNOR TRINNEER "Trip" of Enterprise, JOHN BILLINGSLEY Enterprise's Doctor, VAUGHN ARMSTRONG Admiral Forrest of Enterprise, Telek of Voyager and Korris of TNG, JEFFREY COMBS Shran in Enterprise, Weyoun in DS9.

Additional guests included: Xenia Seeberg, Paul Goddard, Celeste Yarnall, William Wellman, Jr., Kathnleen Kinmont, Lorenzo Lamas, Corin Nemic, Peter Marko, Don Marshall, Richard Biggs, Gregory Itzin, Joanne Linville, Brian Downey, Patricia Zenilli, Louise Wischerman, Jeffrey Hirschfield, Greg Evigan, Jake Busey, Richard Herb, Natallia Nogulich, Spice Williams, Larry Nemecek, Virginia Hey, Jason Marsden, Rena Owen, Bill Blair, Tanya Lemani, Todd Bryant, Tony Amendola, Phyllis Douglas, Tania Lamani, Lawrence Montaigne, William Jordan, Michael Dante, Derek Partridge, Patrick Kilpatrick, Glenn Snadix, J. Paul Borhmer, Alan Ruck and Anthony Montgomery.

Dan Madsen founder of The Official Star Trek Fan Club Magazine, Adam Unger Vice-President of Business Development at Art Asylum and Manny Jesus, resident Star Trek Guru from Art Asylum, are in attendance as is Herb Wright the producer/writer of Star Trek: The Next Generation.


Jim Baldassare. Photo By Laura Deni
Some people just never get enough of the theatre. When you've already seen every show on the Great White Way, it only makes sense to see what London has to offer.

Jim Baldassare is Chapter Chair of the Press Agent side of the Association of Theatrical Press Agents and Managers (ATPAM) Board of Governors.

In that capacity the Tony voter covers every Tony nominated production. Not getting his fill of theatre in the Big Apple, Baldassare ventured across the pond for a two-week adventure that amounted to a busman's holiday. Baldassare agreed to provide Broadway To Vegas with coverage of the London productions he saw. We found his comments insightful and interesting.

"The revival of Tom Stoppard's Jumpers, directed pitch perfectly by David Leveaux, was the best all around production I caught," declared Baldassare. "Mesmerizing and wonderful."

"The leads Simon Russell Beale and Essie Davis were incredible."

"It's not quite as difficult or dense a play as some of Stoppard's more recent stuff - still it's very talky - yet this director and these actors make Stoppard's words sing," he analyzed.

"What a great, great production."

"I enjoyed Jerry Springer-The Opera," stated Baldassare. "The audience was younger than at most shows I caught and there was excitement in the air both before the show began, during it, and following it."

"For me, the first act was outrageously wonderful, but the second act was a huge disappointment."

"Still, lots of fun all told. High art (opera) meets blasphemy - the worst language you've ever heard - is the very giddy appeal."

"Glenn Close and Laurie Anderson were in the audience the night I saw it."

"This moves to the West End in the fall and to Broadway some time later. There have already been rumors that it might be a $200 ticket in New York. Yikes!"

POWER: NATIONAL'S COTTESLOE THEATRE "This is by Nick Dear, staged at the smallest of the three theaters at the National."

"It's a play basically about the power struggle between Nicolas Fouquet, a minister of Finance, and the Sun King - Louis XIV."

"I found this intriguing and fun. Robert Lindsay, of Me and My Gal fame, as Fouquet was terrific."

"Elmina's Kitchen, a drama about black on black violence in a bad section of London."

"Lots of threatened violence and interesting characters and a really violent ending, which comes as no surprise."

"You know the violent ending is coming - but when it arrives - it's still shocking and surprising, because you don't really expect the actual outcome - or at least I didn't."

"I left the theater stunned."

"This play is by an interesting new voice, a man named Kwame Kwei-Armah."

HIS GIRL FRIDAY; NATIONAL'S OLIVIER THEATRE "This is John Guare's adaptation of The Front Page, based on the film His Girl Friday, which was based on The Front Page," Baldassare continued.

"It was lotsa fun - even though I'm not sure it will transfer to these shores. Ben Brantley of The New York Times has already dissed it. Personally, I think it would be better to revive The Front Page here. Nonetheless, I still had a terrific time and enjoyed the huge cast headed by Zoe Wanamaker and Alex Jennings."

"Margaret Tyzack almost steals the show in a smaller role. Recent Tony winner Jack O'Brien deftly directs. One thing's for sure: They should get rid of the "framing" device they're using if they do bring it here. They're trying to say it's actually a movie that's being filmed and not a play we're seeing - but that doesn't go anywhere and makes less sense. It almost seems like an apology."

The cast of Dubya. Photo courtesy Stefano Cagnoni
"I found this totally lame," declared Baldassare.

"Some say it's sophomoric. I wanted to see this since it had gotten a fair amount of notice in the New York press."

"Unfortunately, it doesn't even rise to the level of bad Saturday Night Live."

"I left at the intermission."

"For me that's the ultimate slap."

"In the past four years of being a Tony voter I haven't left one show prior to its conclusion. I'm always afraid I'll miss something "great" in the second or missed act."

Royal Haymarket Theatre. Photo by: Jim Baldassare
"Ralph Fiennes in Ibsen's Brand, was tough sledding."

"It's the most tedious and laborious thing I saw," complained Baldassare.

"I'd never seen Fiennes live before. I didn't see his New York Hamlet, and was curious."

"He was okay, but doesn't really send off any fireworks."

"Ibsen is on record as saying he never meant this piece to be performed. I'd say Ibsen knows whatfore he speaketh about. I didn't see any Shakespeare while I was there so I thought I'd throw that in," quipped Baldassare.

"One last thought: I was taken by the leading lady, an actress I was not familiar with, named Claire Price."

Photo By: Jim Baldassare
"A very interesting play by Terry Johnson that had transferred from the Royal Court to the West End, which doesn't fully click," Baldassare opined.

"It takes place in three different time periods - and wouldn't you know - the current time period is never as interesting as the older ones."

"The more interesting part of this play includes an impersonation of Alfred Hitchcock done to perfection by actor William Hootkins."

"And, there's the Blonde of the title, who was supposed to be the body double for Janet Leigh in Psycho."

"This part of the play was fascinating."

"Rosamund Pike, a Bond girl in Die Another Day as said Blonde amazed me."

"The design for this show, by William Dudley, was fascinating all by itself, including astounding projections and video and eerie holographs. Unfortunately, the whole thing needs a re-write if it's ever going to come to New York. Or a re-thinking. It might be worth the effort."

"I surprisingly enjoyed this production," Baldassare exclaimed.

"It was Michael Ball's next to last week in the show. I found him to be an ingratiating and likeable performer."

"It's a kiddie show, but so much better than say Frog and Toad."

"And when the car flies - it's this show's "helicopter" or "chandelier" - I loved watching the children near me being excited by it."

BOMBAY DREAMS; APOLLO VICTORIA THEATRE "I really love the music. New leads had just replaced the originals and they were both attractive and excellent."

"The problem with this show is the book," complained Baldassare. "It's Godawful. As everyone knows by this point, the book is being re-written for New York by Thomas Meehan and it really needs to be. But, already there's controversy about that, from reports in the tabloids, centering around that he's included "white people!" as a framing device. Those framing devices'll get you every time!"

"Of course, this version has not been added to the London edition."

"And, as much as I loved the music, you have to feel sorry for the people who work in The Apollo Victoria's lobby, as they have to hear the continual and constant playing of Shakalaka Baby. That title is repeated incessantly in the song."

"This is 70's Mamet, with Matthew Perry, Hank Azaria, Minnie Driver and Brit newcomer Kelly Reilly."

"Didn't get very good reviews. Reilly, the unknown fared best," said Baldassare.

"But, its been doing boffo biz - one of the hardest tickets, along with Jerry Springer."

"I wanted to see the cast and wasn't expecting much, but I had a real good time, so this was a pleasant surprise."

"Matthew Perry might not want to do Brand anytime soon, but then neither should anyone else!"

TWYLA THARP DANCE; SADLER'S WELLS THEATRE "Being a huge fan of Movin Out' I went to see Twyla Tharp Dance and wasn't disappointed. Loved it!" he exclamied. "They're in New York this week at the Joyce," reported Baldassare about Twyla Tharp Dance, which has returned to the Joyce Theater through August 9th.

"Went to the Opening Night performance and recent Tony winner Tharp came out and bowed with the dancers at the end."

ABSOLUTELY! {perhaps};WYNDHAMS "This is actually Pirandello's Right You Are If You Think You Are, explained Baldassare. "Staged by Franco Zeffirelli at the Wyndhams, it stars Joan Plowright in her first London stage appearance in quite a few years."

"It's rumored to be coming to New York."

"Great to see Plowright, but not that special an evening. Not a total snooze - but close. Fortunately, I saw it near the beginning of my trip. If the Jerry Springer audience was the youngest audience, this was clearly hands down the oldest one."

THE BALLAD OF LITTLE JO; BRIDEWELL THEATRE "This received its World Premiere at Steppenwolf some years ago and was being performed at a small Off West End theater."

"It's a musical based on the film of the same name. I thought the company was totally committed to the piece, which has an equal amount of strengths and weaknesses. Anna Francolini in the lead role was amazingly good."

Kenneth Branagh as Edmond (Photo: Manuel Harlan)
"On my final night in London I went see a preview of Kenneth Branagh in the revival David Mamet's 1983 Edmond."

"A relatively short play - one long act - it's a really nasty piece of work - with the Branagh character, Edmond, leaving his wife at the beginning of the play and then traversing through Manhattan's underbelly."

"Things get nastier and nastier."

"I found this to be a top notch production," Baldassare emphasized.

"Branagh's performance and New York accent are excellent. By the way, he does total frontal nudity in full light, center stage, and not super quick. It's not too often you see a big star naked in a stage play. If you're thinking Kathleen Turner, surely a big star, her nudity was quick in The Graduate and very dimly lit."

"For the record," added Baldassare, "Rosamund Pike, not a big star, also goes "starkers" in Hitchcock Blonde as Hitchcock screen tests her for the body double role."

Broadway To Vegas is supported through advertising and donations. Priority consideration is given to interview suggestions, news, press releases, etc from paid supporters. However, no paid supporters control, alter, edit, or in any way manipulate the content of this site. Your donation is appreciated. We accept PAYPAL.
Thank you for your interest.


is an ode not just to guitar music, but to a particular brand of guitar - The Taylor. As such, the concept could have resulted in the biggest mess ever consigned to a disc or hocked on QVC.

What developed are compilation volumes of excellent craftsmanship, a soothing balm to the listening ears as well as informative technical information, for those who long to play as well as the finger pickin' masters spotlighted.

Sparkling with talent, Sounds of Wood & Steel 3 is a celebration of the acoustic guitar - an instrument which can lead worship in church or back a rock band.

Taylor Guitars and Windham Hill Records have teamed up for the third time to sing the instrumental praise, with top-tier artists exhibiting their acumen in an array of styles.

Sounds of Wood & Steel 3 on Windham Hill will be released August 5.

As with the first two discs, Volume 3 showcases world class guitarists bound together by their love of acoustical guitars. The excellent musical selections are augmented by individual technical notes, from each acoustical guitarist, regarding the Taylor guitar they prefer to play and why. There are also interesting notes about how the composition came to life.

This is not your average pickin' and a grinin' crowd.

Guitarland - Russ Freeman; I Will Take Care of You - Susanna Hoffs; Cajon Pass - Phil Keaggy; Ozymandias - Chris Proctor; Trio - C. Michael Spriggs; Sleep On It Tonight - T.J. Baden Featuring Jimmy Messina, Chris Pelonis; Butter Fingers - Bill Cooley Featuring Kathy Mattea; Three Little Miracles -Doyle Dykes with Duane Eddy; Chinese Checkers - Steve Poltz; Ain't Misbehavin' - Suzy Bogguss; Night Winds - Kenny Rogers; St. James Infirmary - Robben Ford; You Just Missed Me - Fred Mollin; Jesse's Song - Jars Of Clay; Litho Blitho - Dave Matthews; Cynthia's Place - Paul Rogers; Bombay Doors - Billy Sheehan.

West Virginia native Kathy Mattea, who once worked as a tour guide at the Country Music Hall of Fame, has been influenced from sounds acoustic to Celtic. Her favorite instrument is a custom black-stained maple 612-C Florentine cut-away Taylor guitar, nicknamed Blackie.

Bill Cooley
Nashville veteran Bill Cooley is called “one of Nashville’s most respected sidemen” by Guitar Player magazine. After stints with Merle Haggard, Reba McEntire, Alan Jackson, and Hal Ketchum, he joined forces with Mattea, for whom he has served as guitarist and bandleader for the last 12 years.

Dave Matthews isn't sitting still. He's playing Portland, Vancouver and the Gorge Amphitheatre in Washington this week. Susie Bogguss is performing at the Iowa State Fair this coming Friday and Saturday. Kenny Rogers is at the Meadowbrook Farm Musical Arts Center in Gilford, New Hampshire on Friday and then is playing and singing on Saturday at the South Shore Music Circus in Cohasset, Mass.

Phil Keaggy
Phil Keaggy, whose remarkable Cajon Pass was written and recorded in a single afternoon, has won seven Dove Awards for Instrumental Album of the Year. In addition to this offering, his new CD Hourglass, is scheduled to be released on August 2nd. That marks the first studio album from the band in 31 years.

In the September 2003 issue of Acoustic Guitar magazine Doyle Dykes is featured in an article, "Compose Yourself; how eight cutting edge fingerstylists developed their ideas into finished compositions."

By the way, anybody who is a fingerstylist has to take special care of those digits.

The nails of "finger pickers" take a beating and "pickers" also need thicker nails. Doyle's nail technician, Kathleen Tallent, puts acrylic on Doyle's ring finger, middle finger, and pointer finger on his right hand.

Individually, every artist on Sounds of Wood & Steel is renowned. Collectively, they present a compelling assortment of jazz, pop, country, classical and new age. People who don't think they'd enjoy guitar music will be enthralled by this effort.

To commemorate the release of Sounds of Wood & Steel 3, Taylor has created a limited edition Windham Hill guitar valued at $5,000. The guitar, which is featured in the album's artwork, will be given away in a national contest.


It's Sundance Meets Mercer. Object - to harness the power of songs, which they equate to "like capturing lightening in a bottle."

In the summer of 2002, The Johnny Mercer Foundation formed a thrilling new alliance with the famed Sundance Film Institute and created an intense one-on-one seminar program designed for and dedicated to Theatre/ Film Performers, Writers, and Directors.

The Power Of American Popular Song features Master Classes, Panels and Performance, focusing on the interpretation and personalization of our Great American Songbook, along with the value of incorporating pop classics as a tool for subjective character motivation and directorial thru-line. This all takes place the weekend of August 7-10, on the Sundance Film Institute ranch.

The program is designed for professional theatre and film actors, as well as writers and directors.

Limited to 30 participants, auditions are were held in New York, Los Angeles, and in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Marilyn and Alan Bergman
The Power of American Popular Song will feature master classes instructed by legendary singer and recording artist Margaret Whiting; multiple Oscar-winning songwriting team Alan and Marilyn Bergman; composer -The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas - Carol Hall; composer and musical director Shelly Markham, who also does duty as accompanist for vocalist Andrea Marcovicci; actor, director and producer Jack Wrangler, co-conceiver of the Broadway musical, Dream; stage director Philip Himbery and Broadway and cabaret star Betty Buckley.

Included in the weekend are two special public performances in the Sundance Screening Room. On Friday, August 8, Alan and Marilyn Bergman will perform songs of their own composition. All of the participating artists and instructors will present a final performance on Saturday, August 9.

In 2003, in addition to The Power of American Popular Song workshop, the Mercer Foundation will underwrite a new musical play supported by Sundance Institute.

(left to right): Richard (Gary Cole), Rebecca (Emily Bergl) and Corrine (Catherine Dent) in a scene from The Country Photo: Ken Howard
by Martin Crimp. Starring Emily Bergl, Gary Cole and Catherine Dent.

On a cold, Dark night, an English country doctor brings an unconscious woman into his home. He tells his wife that he found her lying by the side of the road. As the truth about the woman slowly emerges, the relationships among this unlikely triangle are tested. The countryside is not as peaceful as it seems.

Lisa Peterson returns to direct the American premiere of The Country, exploring what Martin Crimp has to say - and what he chooses not to say - about contemporary marriages.

Opened July 28 with performances through August 31. LaJolla Playhouse, California.

HAIRSPRAY welcomes Kathy Brier to the role of Tracy Turnblad beginning August 12th. When not on stage Brier portrays Marcie Walsh on ABC's One Life to Live. Tony winner Marissa Jaret Winokur is leaving the production to produce and star in an as-yet-untitled film due October 19 on the ABC Family channel. Also in the works for Winokur is a deal to develop an ABC series for the 2004-2005 season.

THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER welcomes well-known CBS weatherman, Ira Joe Fisher, to the cast of the Off-Broadway production for a one show appearance - a special Thursday matinee performance, August 7th Times Square’s historic Lamb’s Theatre.

No stranger to the stage, Fisher has several theater performing credits, including the legendary musical The Fantasticks. His appearance in The Prince and the Pauper is part of a feature news story about performing in a New York musical. The news story is planned to air on the popular CBS Saturday Early Show, August 9. Directed by Ray Roderick, The Prince and the Pauper has music and lyrics by Neil Berg with additional lyrics by Bernie Garzia and features a book by Garzia and Roderick.

HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY ITCH text by John Cameron Mitchell. Music and Lyrics by Stephen Tra. Directed by Brad Rouse. The production features Anthony Rapp, the star of the Broadway production of Rent, as Hedwig. Opens August. 2 at Hartford Stage. Performances through August 17. Hartford, Conn.

DOWNSIZE The Bathroom Tour, by Chris Welzenbach,directed by Stephan Mazurek. Downsize has been performed over the past two months in public restrooms throughout Chicago, for obviously limited audiences - in what has been dubbed the Restroom Tour.

Downsize is a one act comedy that explores the scheming and alliances made and unmade behind the closed doors - in this case the bathroom doors of a powerful corporation.

While working as a legal secretary in the corporate sector, playwright Welzenbach observed the change in behavior of managers between the offices and the restroom. In a strictly male environment, they let down their guard and voiced some shocking opinions about women and minorities - things that never would have been said in the office proper. Welzenbach became intrigued with this concept and subsequently penned Downsize, a play in which five corporate middle-managers meet to cut deals in the men's room.

Downsize evokes memories of all the bathroom conferences one has been a party to in one's lifetime, from middle school to the present. Nothing really changes much after the fourth grade, it's just that the stakes are higher.

The production will run August 8 through 30 at the Cubby Bear Cafe, Chicago.

BABES IN ARMS will see its professional Los Angeles premiere of the 1937 Rodgers and Hart classic, when Reprise begins their 2003-2004 season September 9th. The musical will star Ruta Lee, Neil Patrick Harris and Rachel York at UCLA’s Freud Playhouse. Performances are scheduled for two weeks only, September 9th through 21st.

by August Wilson. Directed by Marion McClinton. World Premiere Production starring Anthony Chisholm, Yvette Ganier, Peter Francis James, John Earl Jelks, Phylicia Rashad, Raynor Scheine and Al White.

Set Design David Gallo. Costume Design Constanza Romero. Lighting Design Donald Holder. Sound Design Dan Moses Schreier. Original Music Kathryn Bostic.

August Wilson nears completion of his 20th Century cycle with the first decade in his new play, Gem of the Ocean, set in Pittsburgh, 1904.

Theodore Roosevelt is President. Scott Joplin and ragtime music are a hit. Cy Young pitches the first perfect baseball game. New York City’s new subway opens its doors. The first Olympic games in the U.S. are held in St. Louis. And blacks in the southern states start to explore new possibilities. Many head north looking for jobs, trying to claim the citizenship promised by emancipation and guaranteed by the Constitution. It is a new journey in a young century.

Open Forums -post-play discussions take place every Tuesday evening beginning August 5. Deaf Audience Theatre Experience and Audio Described Performance: Saturday, August 23.

Mark Taper in Los Angeles through September 7th.


LUCIE ARNAZ drops by for a walk down memory lane, sharing her award winning documentary: Lucy & Desi A Home Movie, revisiting the private lives of her very public parents. August 10 at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Ogunquit, Maine.

MARIAH CAREY in The Charmbracelet Tour, in support of her latest album Charmbracelet, wowing fans and winning over her worst critics. She performing tonight, August 3, at the Scene Pavilion in Cleveland, Ohio. On Thursday the energetic, talented diva is at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto.

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E STREET BAND performing Wednesday at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, PA. On Friday they open a three night gig at the Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.

WAYNE SHORTER LIFE AND MUSIC Artists: Wayne Shorter Quartet; Hollywood Bowl Orchestra; Nicole Paiement, guest conductor; Herbie Hancock, Carlos Santana, and Savion Glover are special guests. Wednesday, August 6 at the Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles.

FARMERS GREAT AMERICAN CONCERT starring Carol Channing, special guest Michael Buble with John Mauceri conducting the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, takes place Saturday, August 9th at the Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles.

THREE MO' TENORS Victor Trent Cook Roderick Dixon and Thomas Young, tackle seven musical styles–delivering everything from jazz and soul to swing and Broadway with finesse. Monday, August 4 at the Filene Performance Center at Wolftrap.

LONESTAR performing August 6 at the Palace Indian Gaming Center in Lemoore, California. On August 8th they are on stage at Caesars Palace in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. On August 10th the show is at the Konocti Harbor Resort in Kelseyville, California.

JERRY SEINFELD making people laugh Friday and Saturday at the Au-Rene Theatre in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

ALISON KRAUSE in the spotlight Saturday at the West Virginia State Fair in Fairlee, West Virginia.

WYONNA at the Rosebud Casino in Valentine, Nebraska on Thursday. Friday she is at the Soo Pass Ranch in Detroit Lakes, Minn.

LEE GREENWOOD performing Saturday at the Warren Country Fairgrounds in Lebanon, Ohio.

B.B. KING MUSIC FESTIVAL 2003 starring B.B. King, Jeff Beck and Galactic have a busy week. Tonight they are on stage at the Santa Barbara Bowl in Santa Barbara, California. On Tuesday, August 5, the show is at Dodge Theatre in Phoenix, Arizona. On Wednesday they can be enjoyed at the Journal Pavilion in Albuquerque, New Mexico. On Thurs day they'll be entertaining at Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre in Engelwood, Colorado. On Saturday the USP Sun Dome in Tampa, Florida will be packed with fans. And, next Sunday, August 10th, they'll delight the crowds at Mizner Park Amphitheatre in Boca Raton, Florida.

FLEETWOOD MAC perform Saturday at the Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah.

METALLICA Robert Trujillo, Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich, performs Wednesday at the USANA Amphitheater in West Valley City, Utah.

VICKI LAWRENCE opens a four night stand Thursday at Casino Magic in Bay St Louis, Mississippi.

MICHAEL FEINSTEIN Thursday at the Mann Center in Philadelphia, Penn.

PRESERVATION HALL JAZZ BAND entertaining Thursday, August 7, at the Great Waters Music Festival in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire.

ARLO GUTHRIE on stage Monday, August 7 at the Ocean City Music Pier in Ocean City, New Jersey. On Saturday he is at the Boarding House Park in Lowell, Mass.

JOHN PIZZARELLI entertaining Thursday at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts in Eugene, Oregon.

PAULA POUNDSTONE opens a four night engagement on Thursday at the Improv in Miami, Florida.

HEART on stage Monday at the Ventura County Fair in Ventura, California. On Wednesday and Thursday they perform at the Historic Mountain Winery in Saratoga, California.

PETER CINCOTTI entertaining at the JVC Jazz Festival in Newport, Rhode Island on Friday. The singer is in the spotlight Saturday at the New Melody Fair in North Tonawanda, New York.

PAUL ANKA singing his hits August 8th at the North Shore Music Theatre in Beverly, Mass.

KD LANG at the JVC Jazz Festival in Newport, Rhone Island on August 8th. On Saturday she's in the spotlight at the New Melody Fair in North Tonawanda, New York.

KAREN MASON performs as part of the Chicago Theatre Festival, August 8 in Chicago.

HUEY LEWIS AND THE NEWS at the Hampton Beach Casino on Hampton Beach, New Hampshire on Wednesday. A two-nighter. Thursday and Friday, takes place at the South Shore Music Circus in Cohasset, Mass.


BOB HOPE 1903-2003 passed away last Sunday at his home in California. Friends and fans have been recalling memories of this American icon, for which they gave thanks.

Over the years we have a few of our own.

Bob Hope in Las Vegas performing at an outdoor celebration at the Flamingo Hotel during Helldorado Days in 1947
His family told of Hope not wanting to discuss his funeral arrangements - quipping "surprise me."

Bob's aversion of caskets called for his needing a movie double. In August of 1987 I interviewed 77-year-old Marcus Turk, a former stuntman who had doubled for Tyrone Power, Ray Milland, Don Ameche, Henry Fonda and - Bob Hope. According to Turk the comedian was game to attempt almost anything - except for one hang-up.

"The first time I ever doubled for Bob Hope was in one of the Hope road movies," Turk had remembered. "The scene called for Bob to lie in a casket and be carried away. Bob had a phobia about caskets and refused to get inside. So, I was called in to double for him. All I had to do was lie down in the casket. I did nothing and got $35.00."

Hope was a frequent visitor to Las Vegas, performing at convention, playing golf or attending a friend's showroom opening.

In 1989 Hope performed in a rare appearance at the Tropicana Hotel and told the receptive convention audience that the delivery of pups at the White House would "give Vice President Dan Quayle something to play with."

Then there was that time in Alaska when diners thought Hope was choking to death. It was 1987 and Hope was in Alaska salmon fishing. While eating mulligatawny soup Hope suddenly started choking. People rushed to his side. They discovered that the comedian was having trouble breathing because there was too much curry powder in the soup. Later that week, Hope incorporated the incident into an off-the-cuff comedy routine.

The Wolfman in Las Vegas starring Wolfman Jack was produced for the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas. This show presented Wolfman Jack as the star headliner in an original musical production, which included a full orchestra, 20 singers and dancers, as well as guests Peaches & Herb and France Joli.

The Wolfman had appeared on Hope's television show and Hope attended opening night. He sat directly in front of me. Turning around the comic suggested that if he ever blocked my view I should simply "give me a nudge." Since the production ended up being dreadful, Bob's head was a welcome sight.

Next Column: August 10, 2003
Copyright: August 3, 2003. All Rights Reserved. Reviews, Interviews, Commentary, Photographs or graphics from any Broadway To Vegas (TM) columns may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, utilized as leads, or used in any manner without permission, compensation and/or credit.
Link to Main Page

Laura Deni