Broadway To Vegas
SHOW REVIEWS CELEBRITY INTERVIEWS GOSSIP NEWS
Copyright: May 24, 1999
By: Laura Deni
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DEBATE OVER INTERNET MUSIC
Ahmet Ertegun, who founded the Atlantic record label in 1947, was the keynote speaker at the
second annual Emerging Artists & Talent in Music (EAT'M) conference, which just wrapped in
Las Vegas. Founded by David Cassidy's wife, Sue Shifrin-Cassidy and Lisa Tenner,
EAT'M offers a showcase for unaffiliated artists and forums to discuss important music industry
The hottest topic spinning concerned downloading music from the Internet.
"The reality is that for as long as there has been a music business, people have been excited and
threatened by new technology," Ertegun told the crowd which included both record label
executives and promoters of the latest in Internet technology.
"Technology is merely a tool to get the music out there. The medium is not the message," he
continued. In both his keynote address and in speaking to key players Ertegun hammered that
"artists and composers have to be compensated."
Ertegun was optimistic that "we will find a way of using modern technologies without sacrificing
the lives of the people involved in the industry."
A lively seminar "Internet - Nuts and Bolts" brought intelligent, staccato salvos from Michael
Robertson, CEO of MP3.com and Ron Sobel of ASCAP.
"Music is very viral," charged
Robertson. "It's how stars are broken. We're not big fans of security at MP3.com. Security gets
in the way with consumers."
"The net is also a marketplace," countered Sobel. "And therein lies the rub."
CELEBRATE WITH ECSTATIC
Tyne Daly, who snagged a 1989 Tony award for her portrayal of Mama Rose in Gypsy
and became a household name through the television series Cagney and Lacy, is returning
to the boob tube.
A new CBS entry casts Daly in Judging Amy, a series about a young female judge who
moves from the city to find closer family ties. Amy Brenneman plays the single mother judge of a
daughter, with Daly as her mother.
"They think you've died if you haven't been on TV on a regular basis in three years," Daly once
explained. "It doesn't matter to them that I was on Broadway grabbing my Tony. You can't think
about things like that or you get bummed."
The talented formally trained actress, who made her theatrical debut in 1966, has had an eclectic
career punctuated by interesting commentary.
When she was cast as the frump Lola in William Inge's Come Back Little Sheba, she
opined; "I'd like to be done with the sad and frumpy ladies. In some ways, I hope this is my
Tyne Daly in Gypsy
After she took part in the original cast recording of Gypsy she offered her own review. "It
was a nightmare. People were being mean to each other instead of loving. I was sick - and still
playing shows. The pressure was huge. So when people come up and say - Will you sign this
album? - I tell them to take it back to the store and get their money back!"
When her weight gain and then loss made headlines, Tyne retorted: "My relationship with food is
violent. If they'd just make food nasty, we'd all be better off. I once had a dream that I was
literally standing at the Pearly Gates and there was this angel with wings who asked me my
average lifetime weight. If you don't have a penis the only true cultural contribution you can make
is to lose 35 pounds. I didn't gain or lose nearly as much as the press said. I'm vain about my legs.
I think I have great legs."
Three years ago when Tyne approached her 50th birthday, she told the London Sunday
Mirror "My friends and I will gather among the giant redwood trees in Northern California
and wait until the moon is full. Then, stark naked, I will start the ecstatic dancing. There just
has to be a ceremony for being 50, and I want to enter the second half of my life like a
brand new baby."
What Daly did on her personal big five zero day was to shave her head, wanting to start her
second half-century in the same hairless state as her first. She says she's "always felt that I was
going to live to be 86."
Her grandfather was a Methodist minister. "The ministry, the theater and the law are all very
close. It's all about being more righteous as a human being. "
Although Daly has a room full of awards, she has learned to keep her perspective. Once while
with her daughters in a New York hotel, paparazzi sprang out, bulbs flashing. "My kids were
upset. So I was real brave. I walked up to them and said - Listen, fellows. Give us a break. We're
on vacation. They said - We're not interested in you, lady. Elizabeth Taylor is in the hotel. - It
was very humbling, which is good."
ASTAIRE AWARDS TO BE
The 1999 Astaire Awards will be presented at a benefit luncheon for the Theatre Development
Fund on Thursday at New York's The Supper Club. Bebe Neuwirth, who won the 1997 Astaire
Award for her work in Chicago, will emcee.
Broadway choreographers Patricia Birch and Matthew Bourne and Swan Lake dancer
Adam Cooper will be honored.
The awards were established in 1982, with the cooperation of Fred Astaire, by the
Anglo-American Dance Foundation to salute "outstanding achievement in dance on Broadway
each season on the part of a dancer or dancers and choreographer."
The awards honor Astaire and his sister, Adele, who appeared in 10 Broadway musicals between
1917 and 1931. Astaire also starred on Broadway without his sister in the 1932 Cole Porter
musical, The Gay Divorcee, which was his last appearance in a legitimate theater
In honor of the centennial birthday of Astaire, who was born May 10, 1899, the Theatre
Development Fund will celebrate the career of the famed dancer during Thursday's awards
Four time Tony award nominee Birch will receive his Astaire Award for Best Choreography for
the Lincoln Center and Livent co-production of Parade. London born Adam Cooper,
named Best Dancer, created the award winning role of Swan in Swan Lake. Bourne,
artistic director of the artistic director and choreographer of Adventures of Motion Pictures of
Britain, will receive a special award for concept, direction and choreography for Swan
Lake. His latest creation Cinderella earned rave reviews at the Ahmanson Theatre in
DAVID MERRICK HONORED
Legendary Broadway producer David Merrick is honored tonight, Monday May 24, with the 10th
annual Oscar Hammerstein Award.
The gala benefit in the sanctuary of Saint Peter's Church in the Citicorp Center, is staged by the
York Theatre Company, under the guidance of Artistic Director James Morgan and Managing
Director Robert A. Buckley.
Eight-time Tony Award winning producer David Merrick, who has produced over 100 musical
and dramatic works will receive the Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Musical Theatre.
Merrick's award will be presented by Mary Rodgers Guettel, composer of Once Upon a
Mattress.Cameron Mackintosh and Jerry Herman serve as honorary chairmen for the event,
which is hosted by Orson Bean.
Entertainment will include appearances by Tony Roberts, Anna Maria Alberghetti, Judy Kaye,
Tom Wopat, Tammy Grimes, Michael Rupert, Brian D'Arcy James, Dee Hoty, and Lee Roy
JAZZING IT UP
The Bell Atlantic 1999 Jazz Festival heads into Boston. On May 26 the downbeat is by Kurt
Elling & His Trio at Scullers.
On May 27 the Billy Pierce Quartet can be enjoyed at Ryles.
Same night the Pharoah Sanders Trio begins a three-night stand at Regattebar and the incredible
Hugh Masekele does a two nighter at Scullers.
On Friday, Medeski Martin & Wood plus DJ Logic and Leon Parker Solo take over the Orpheum
Theater. At the Berklee Performance Center it's none other than An Evening With Dave Brubeck
with Bill Ware's Vibes. The Ryles presents the Ryles Jazz Orchestra with special guest Baritone
sax legend Nick Brignola.
The jazzfest continues in Boston through May 30 then heads to New York with a different roster
of jazz greats.
SOAP STAR HEADLINES NEW
Florencia Lozano - she plays tough-as-nails attorney Te' a Delgado - on ABC's One Life To
Live, will star in Lick, a new comedy about the music industry.
Lick takes place in contemporary New York City at Lick Records, record company of the
moment, where what happened yesterday isn't nearly as important as what's happening ten
minutes from now. In this slightly off-center world. Lick's president, the sexy, near-legendary
Joan Gore is played by Lozano. Her subordinate, and undeclared rival, Mike is brought to live on
stage by Peter McCabe. In their sights is a hot, young singer, the fashionable arrogant, purposely
unwashed, singularly named Scruff - played by Quentin Mare'.He believes he is in control of both
his fate and career. Nothing, as he finds out, could be farther from the truth.
Lick is authored by Catherine Celesia Allen, a founding member of The Lab Theater
Company, is the winner of a Julie Harris Playwriting Award for her courtroom drama, The
Essence of Being. Eva Sacks will direct Lick, which begins performances June 4.
At the 78th Street Theatre Lab.
PRIDE HAS WORLD
(from left): Erik Kever Ryle (Alberto), Steven Patterson (Neil), Michael McAllister (Brady), and
Jett Pihakis (Doug). Photo by John Sowle.
We were delighted to hear from Steven Patterson of Kaliyuga Arts in San Francisco. The guy is a
bit exhausted, but for good reason. "We're in the midst of five different projects at the moment,"
he reported. "Most exciting is the world premiere of a new comedy called Pride,
by Myles Weber, which we'll be staging
at the Exit Theatre in San Francisco on weekends through Gay Pride month.
"The playwright is currently in residence with us, working on the piece as we prepare for the
opening June 7. Pride is a scathing new comedy that came to us as an unsolicited
manuscript in the mail. See, it can happen!," exclaimed Patterson.
"John has also designed sets for George Walker's (See Broadway To Vegas column of Feb. 1,
1999) Problem Child which will be playing across the hall at the Exit during our run, and
is heading back to helm a 3-performance run of Dan Carbone's Up From The Ground at
Westbeth Arts Center in Manhattan.
"We'll also be staging the U.S. premiere of an opera by British composer Judith Weir called
Heaven Ablaze In His Breast in June, at the College of Marin," continued Patterson.
"No time to breathe these days," he added. What wonderful reasons to be short of breath is all we
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BLESS THE BEASTS AND THE
Illusionists Siegfried & Roy, officials from Exxon Corporation, and the National Fish and Wildlife
Foundation held a press conference at the Mirage Hotel to announce a partnership to help save
the tiger in the wild.
At the press conference, which was held at noon on the day of the Atlanta school shootings, an
emotional Siegfried compared raising animals and children. He stressed that they both need to
know they are loved, but need to be taught discipline and respect. He begged for parents to spend
more time with their children, emphasizing that it takes time to train an animal and raise a child.
He divulged that while he didn't come from a family that was physically demonstrative, his
mother was home, knew what he was doing and he knew he was loved. He also knew he was
required to respect other people. As his partner, Roy, shared the podium, Siegfried added that
their animals are their children and it takes a lot of time, attention and love to raise them.
SIEGFRIED AND ROY AT PRESS CONFERENCE
For more than two decades, Siegfried & Roy have maintained an unequaled commitment to white
tigers and lions. Their internationally acclaimed Mirage performance features the rare
Photo by: Laura Deni
At the beginning of this century, there were approximately 100,000 tigers in the wild. Today,
there are fewer than 7,500.
"A key objective of the Save The Tiger Fund is developing public support for tiger conservation,"
stated Tony Atkiss, Exxon's vice president for public affairs. "The tiger can be considered an
umbrella species because it is crucial to conservation in the wild - when you save the tiger you
are actually helping to preserve an ecosystem."
Exxon has committed more than $6 million over five years to help save the tiger, its corporate
symbol for nearly 100 years. The centerpiece of that commitment is the Save The Tiger
Fund, established in 1995 by Exxon and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Since
then Save The Tiger Fund has supported 93 conservation projects. At the press
conference a new 30-second Save The Tiger commercial was premiered that features Siegfried &
Roy. The spot was produced by McCann-Erickson and premiered on the Discovery Channel last
Legislation enacted in the United States last year makes it illegal to sell, import or export any
product that claims to contain tiger bones or any other substance made from tigers or rhinos.
The Amendment to the Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Act of 1994 (P.L. 105-312) will help
keep these products out of the United States, which has been a major market.
An independent council including seven of the world's leading zoologists, conservationists and
tiger authorities oversee the Save The Tiger Fund. On that committee is Dr. Lee G. Simmons,
Director of the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, Nebraska. His zoo is currently at the forefront of
helping rhinos rebound.
Once on the brink of extinction, Southern white rhinos in Africa are being sold to faraway zoos to
raise money for wildlife conservation. Noted for its efforts at breeding endangered species in
captivity, the Henry Doorly Zoo will house three rhinos beginning this summer.
OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY
ANDRE AGASSI has asked the
Nevada Senate Finance Committee to pass Assembly Bill 348, which addresses compensation for
charter school employee - exempting them from collective bargaining requirements concerning
hours and days worked. Agassi wants to build a charter school next to the 25,000-square-foot
Boys and Girls club his foundation built in Las Vegas. His foundation and the federal government
have each pledged $750,000. Another $750,000 is needed. Testifying via a four minute video
Agassi pleaded; "I am looking for you to be our partner." Finance Chairman Bill Raggio, R-Reno,
stated that this is a tight money year, and that Agassi's request will be competing with all the
other money requests.
DESERT INN HOTEL sold to Sun
International for $275 million in cash. On April 24, 1950, Wilbur Clark's Desert Inn became the
fifth resort to open on the Las Vegas Strip. The 300 room resort held a two-day gala attended by
Edgar Bergan and Charlie McCarthy, Vivian Blaine, Pat Patrick, the Don Arden Dancers and the
Desert Inn Orchestra conducted by Ray Noble. In September 1951 at the age of 36, Frank
Sinatra made his Las Vegas debut at the Desert Inn. Ironically, it is also where he made his last
THEODORE BIKEL opens May 29
at the Jewish Repertory Theater in N.Y. starring in Arje Shaw's The Gathering. The Tony
Award and Academy Award nominee portrays a Holocaust survivor, whose son is a speech
writer for President Ronald Reagan. The play is based on Reagan's controversial 1985 visit to
Germany's Bitburg Cemetery, the last resting place of some notorious Nazis. Regan's visit caused
an uproar in the American Jewish community.
The five-member cast, under the direction of Rebecca Taylor, also includes Robert Fass, Susan
Warrick Hasho and Peter Hermann.
The design team is composed of Robert Joel Schwartz (sets), Susan L. Soetaert (costumes), Scott
Clyve (lighting) and Jeremy M. Posner (sound). Original music is by Andy Stein.
SACRAMENTO LIGHT OPERA ASSOCIATION has an upcoming marvelous season. West Side Story, leads off July
12, followed by The Most Happy Fella, Bye Bye Birdie, 42nd Street,
Carousel, and A Chorus Line.
NINE has its regional premiere
presented by the Clef Theatre Company, at the Nomad Theatre, Denver. Donald Berlin directs;
Melinda Wilson, Erica Sarzin-Borrillo, Karen LaMoureaux, Paul Page, Deborah Persoff,
SuCoffet-Berg and Lori Hansen. Performances begin June 6.
THUNDER FROM DOWN UNDER
that traveling band of hunky Aussies' have planted their jock straps at the Stardust Hotel in Las
Vegas for a month of twice a night audience titillation. Next week's column will have a display of
the stripped down pictures taken at the press party, which followed their opening night show.
GREASE is the word at the Las
Vegas Hilton Hotel. Seven performances, June 2-6.
HAROLD PRINCE has been in
London talent scouting for a new play.
ROSIE O'DONNELL who starred
as Rizzo in the 1994 revival of Grease, and just grabbed a daytime Emmy award for her
talk show, brings her stand-up comedic act to Caesars Palace, Las Vegas May 28-30. No word on
whether Tom Selleck plans to attend. O'Donnell hosted the 1997 and 1998 Tony Awards and this
year will be a presenter.
ETTA JAMES in a one-nighter May
29, House of Blues inside the Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas.
BELLE CALAWAY recently
nominated for Washington D.C.'s Helen Hays award for her performance in the National Tour of
Chicago steps into the role of Roxie Hart opposite Ruthie Henshall at the Shubert Theatre,
NYC through May 30th. Calaway was born in Heidelberg, to a German nurse who gave
her up for adoption. Jim and Doris Calaway, an American Sergeant and his wife brought her to
America at the age of three along with a new adopted brother. Her show business break came
after touring with Bye Bye Birdie. Tommy Tune set up an audition for her to replace the
star understudy in the Broadway show The Will Rogers Follies. She got the job and made
her Broadway debut at the Palace Theatre on a moon, suspended 50 feet in the air.
BOBBY TAYLOR who was in the
New York production of Smoke on the Mountain joins Mary Crabtree and Jack Irvin to
star in Foxfire at the Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville, TN. Inspired by the
Foxfire books, Appalachian traditions come alive in this 1980's story of a mountain family.
Performances through Saturday.
JEFF HARNER in Sammy Cahn
All The Way at the Firebird Cafe NYC through Saturday.
ELVIS COSTELLO Hard Rock
Hotel, Las Vegas. May 29.
THIS AND THAT
OUTER CRITICS CIRCLE party
hardy this Friday night at Sardi's NYC. That's the night the organization of writers who service
media outside the New York area, present their annual awards. It will be a star studded
night. The presenters include; Liam Neeson, Liza Minnelli, Donna Murphy, Robert Cuccioli,
Swoosie Kurtz, Carole Shelley, Matthew Broderick, Michael McGrath, Mario Cantone, George
Segal, Marion Seldes, and Brian Dennehy.
MICHAEL CRAWFORD has a
determined core of fans. For the second time a full page ad has been taken out in the Hollywood
Reporter International edition touting the benefits of casting Crawford in the movie version of
Phantom of the Opera, the role he made famous on Broadway. Diane Flogerzi and her
devoted Crawford fan club are determined that no other actor except Crawford should be
cast. (See related article in Broadway To Vegas Column of November 2, 1998.
ENGELBERT HUMPERDINCK has his Las Vegas home on the market, asking price $590,000. In a gated
community, the 1973 house was remodeled in 1997. The 5,000 sq. ft. place has five bedrooms.
The master bedroom has a spa and sauna.
PAMELA ANDERSON LEE
who photographs well no matter her bra cup size, apparently went through a childhood phase
as a publicity seeking troublemaker. The actress and on again off again wife of rocker Tommy
Lee, told Conan O'Brien that, as a child, she put her younger brother into a huge barrel, then
called police to report him missing. The police and fire departments came rushing to her home to
look for the "missing" sibling. Pamela, pretending to be worried, enjoyed the fuss. However,
the "game" backfired on Pamela. When the police found her younger brother in the barrel, the boy
refused to get out, saying that his sister had put him in there and told him he wasn't to make a
sound or get out until she told him it was okay.
THANK YOU AND GOOD LUCK
We at Broadway To Vegas are accustomed to doing the interviews, not facing a reporter who
poses questions. The unusual event started when a message was left by reporter Melissa Schorr
of the Las Vegas Sun, indicating she'd like to write a feature story about Broadway To
Vegas. I didn't know what to expect.
MELISSA SCHORR AWARDED AN MIT FELLOWSHIP
What I discovered was a delightful, bright, talented young woman with an incredible future ahead
of her in journalism.
First of all, we sincerely thank her for the marvelous page she devoted to Broadway To Vegas
which was printed in the Sunday edition, May 23, 1999 of the Las Vegas SUN section of
the Review Journal/Sun newspaper. Their website is www.lvsun.com.
Not able to control a reporter's natural urges, I started asking her questions. Raised in
New York City, as a child, she fell in love with Broadway.
"My first Broadway show was when I was six years old. My mom took me to see The King
and I starring Yul Brenner. That was wonderful! I've loved Broadway from that time on."
Some of Melissa's fondest memories are seeing Broadway shows with her Mom. "On Sunday
afternoons my Mom and I would go down, stand in the ticket line, and see a show."
Annie ranks as one of her all time favorites. "I got the record before we went to see the
show. I played it so many times that I remember my father coming into my bedroom and saying -
If you play that one more time we're not going to see the show!," Melissa laughed recalling the
They not only saw the Broadway show, Melissa even auditioned for the movie version. "They
were having an open casting and I begged my mom to take me down. We stood in this line that
went around the block. Finally we got in. We had to sing a few bars of The Sun Will Come
Out Tomorrow and then say a few lines: - Come here, Sandy. Good dog. I don't even think I
got a chance to say the lines. I sang my eight bars, they thanked me very much and gave me a
certificate that said I'd tried out for the movie."
A Northwestern University graduate with a journalism major, she came to Las Vegas to accept a
reporting position with the Las Vegas Sun. Recently, she was notified that she has been
awarded a Journalism Fellowship at MIT in Boston beginning this fall. She'll move there in a few
weeks. "I'm going to be focusing on women's health issues. It's going to be very interesting." We
wish her the very best.
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Next Column: May 31, 1999
Copyright: May 24, 1999. All Rights Reserved. Reviews, Interviews, Commentary,
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