Broadway To Vegas



Copyright: October 1, 2017
By: Laura Deni


It was a gorgeous October 1st evening in Las Vegas when 22,000 country music fans arrived at the fourth annual, Route 91 Harvest concert location - a 15 acre lot - across from the Luxor Hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. They were fans of country music attending the final night of the three day music festival featuring singers like Jason Aldean, Eric Church, Sam Hunt, Maren Morris, the Brothers Osborne, Lee Brice, Kane Brown, and Lauren Alaina.

They came to have a good time.

Suddenly, shortly after 10 pm, concertgoers thought firecrackers were being set off as part of the show. Instead, the worst mass shooting in United States history was taking place.

At least 59 people are dead and 515 injured, when lone gunman 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, a resident of Mesquite, Nevada, fired at the crowd. from a 32nd floor window of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, using a 10 automatic weapons. He had been staying at the hotel since last Thursday, September 28. His wife was out of the country. Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said. Paddock shot himself in his Mandalay Bay hotel room and was discovered when S.W.A.T. arrived.

Performing at the time of the shooting was Jason Aldean who tweeted: "Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still don't know what to say but wanted to let everyone know that Me and my Crew are safe. My Thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved tonight. It hurts my heart that this would happen to anyone who was just coming out to enjoy what should have been a fun night. #heartbroken #stopthehate Jason Aldean (@jasonaldean) on Oct 2, 2017 at 1:17am PDT"

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman asked for prayers for her grieving city. “Thank you to all our first responders out there now,” she tweeted. Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval released a statement on Twitter that a “tragic & heinous act of violence has shaken the #Nevada family” and offered prayers to those affected by “this act of cowardice.” Pope Francis termed the shooting a “senseless tragedy” and sent a telegram of condolences to the bishop of Las Vegas, saying the pope was “deeply saddened” to learn of the shooting.

President Trump will visit Las Vegas on Wednesday.

UPDATE MGM Resorts, which owns Mandalay Bay, canceled entertainment performances in all of their properties for Monday, October 2, 2017.

Authorities updated the number of injured to 527 with several remaining in critical condition.

Paddock opened fire on an outdoor concert from his 32nd floor, two room Mandalay Bay hotel suite which he had converted into a lethal armory, smuggling 18 to 20 guns - some rifles with scopes - one hand gun and hundreds of rounds of ammunition inside several suitcases, according to authorities.

An analysis of the shooting video showed Paddock fired an amazing 280 rounds in one 31-second span.

SWAT teams descending on Paddock’s home about 90 minutes outside Las Vegas recovered 18 additional firearms, explosives and several thousand rounds of ammo and some electric devices.

Almost immediately after the shooting an ISIS spokesman’s claimed that Paddock was one of the terror group’s “soldiers.”

“We have determined to this point no connection to an international terrorist group,” responded FBI Special Agent Aaron Rouse of the Las Vegas office. In the past ISIS has claimed false credit.

However, ISIS responded with a second communique that identified the purported nonpolitical Paddock as having converted to Islam a few months ago and said his Islamic name was “Abu Abdul Barr al-Amriki,” describing him as a martyr for the Islamic cause.

In a rapidly developing investigation Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo initially said that Paddock likely acted along. Hours later Lombardo updated his opinion stating that Paddock had received assistance in obtaining guns, ammunition and substantial explosive material, including several pounds of ammonium nitrate, which were found in his vehicle located in the Mandalay Bay parking garage.

Lombardo indicated that investigators are trying to make arrangements to talk to Paddock's girlfriend who recently flew to Tokyo.

Neil Portnow President/CEO of The Recording Academy issued the following statement: "The Recording Academy is deeply saddened by the unthinkable tragedy that occurred last night in Las Vegas. As members of the music community, we will come together as we always do in defiance of this senseless act, and provide love and support to those affected. The Recording Academy’s charity, MusiCares, will be working closely with the music industry to provide trauma counseling and support to those in need. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families during this harrowing time."


It's one of the most recognized and beloved characters ever to capture the hearts of children and adults - SpongeBob SquarePants.

"Since premiering on Nickelodeon in July 1999, SpongeBob SquarePants has emerged as a pop culture phenomenon. The series has been the most-watched animated program with kids for more than 13 consecutive years, and over the past several years, it has averaged more than 1 million total viewers every quarter across all Nickelodeon networks. As the most widely distributed property in Viacom history, SpongeBob is seen in over 185 countries and translated in more than 50 languages. The character-driven cartoon chronicles the nautical and sometimes nonsensical adventures of SpongeBob, an incurably optimist and earnest sea sponge, and his undersea friends."

Producers are betting their sea shells that both parents and children will flock to see the musical stage version and carry home the original cast CD.

A lot of thought has been put into turning this TV series into a toe-tapping tuner. A legendary roster of Grammy Award winners created songs for SpongeBob SquarePants The New Musical, the original cast album released by Masterworks Broadway.

Wonderful, fun, quirky - a real feel good listen.

Successfully utilizing a most unusual concept, a slew of prominent rock/pop songwriters have each created an original song written specifically for a scene. They include: Yolanda Adams, Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith, Sara Bareilles, Jonathan Coulton, Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, The Flaming Lips, Lady Antebellum, Cyndi Lauper, John Legend, Panic! At the Disco, Plain White T s, They Might Be Giants, T. I., and songs by David Bowie, Tom Kenny & Andy Paley, with additional lyrics by Jonathan Coulton and additional music by Tom Kitt - a Pulitzer Prize-winning composer - who also did the orchestrations and arrangements.

Unlike a novice composer who might feel compelled to inject their own feelings into the composition, the tune-smiths involved are all pros who know how to write songs to move along a script. The fact that only composers who know how to write for a product or production, rather than only their own moods, is what makes the various compositions seamlessly flow together.

Like the television series, all of the sea creatures are there. And, like the series where each episode has a plot which concludes with a moral lesson, this stage musical also has a story line brought to life in the stage book by Kyle Jarrow.

Stakes are higher than ever before as SpongeBob and all of Bikini Bottom face the total annihilation of their undersea world. Chaos erupts. Lives hang in the balance. And just when all hope seem lost, a most unexpected hero rises up and takes center stage.

The songs are energetic and catchy to keep the kids' attention while many of the lyrics will resonant with adults.

The cast is headed by Ethan Slater as SpongeBob SquarePants, Gavin Lee as Squidward, Lilli Cooper as Sandy Cheeks and Danny Skinner as Patrick.

Bikini Bottom Day by Johnathan Coulton performed by the Company has the pithy and true observation: "Money doesn't matter if you love your work. Who said that? Probably some penniless jerk."

Adding a delightful almost comedic depth to the sea creatures is the unusual character voice singing the phrase 'No Control' in the number of the same name by David Bowie and Brian Eno, sung by baritone-tenor Kelvin Moom Loh, who plays Perch Perkins.

Sheldon Plankton has a scheme to "get lost," abandoning the town which is explained in the Hip-Hop number When the Going Gets Tough by T.I. That is also the number which has the clever line: "You must have something up your sleeve. I'm a one celled organism. I don't even have sleeves."

Rock ballad Just a Simple Sponge, is sung by SpongBob and was penned by Panic! At the Disco’s frontman Brendon Urie. Daddy Knows Best written by Alerk Ebert of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, performed by Eugene Krabs (Carlos Lopez) and Pearl Krabs (Emmy Raven-Lampman) is the money song, with Pearl complaining that her father always has dollar signs in his eyes.

Bikini Bottom Boogie by Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith, performed by The Electric Skates (Curtis Holbrook, L'ogan J'ones, and JC Schuster) has an interesting orchestration, periodically turning into a boogie on down arrangement, before again revving up.

Super Sea Star Savior, by Yolanda Adams, offers a take it to the rafters (or top of the ocean) uplifting gospel beat song as we learn SpongeBob’s best friend, Patrick Star, (Danny Skinner) is viewed as the town’s only hope for survival. That is followed by the inspiring and beautiful Tomorrow Is, a lovely anthem by The Flaming Lips extolling that "we only have tomorrow to find our way."

Poor Pirates by Sara Bareilles performed by Patchy (Jason Michael Snow) and the pirates is definitely an "aaar" song in which they declare that Pirates have a good side.

I Guess I Miss You by John Stephens is the show's romantic/friendship ballad sung by Patrick and SpongeBob as each admits that they miss the other.

I'm Not a Loser written by John Flansburgh and John Linnelli performed by Squidward Tentacles (Gavin Lee) and the Sea Anemones is literally a tap dancing delight. Lee's distinctive voice adds character and depth to Squidward Tennicles. With an arrangement first featuring the clarinet and then the drums, I'm Not a Loser is a big, Broadway production, show stopping number if there ever was one; followed by the catchy Best Boy Ever, performed by SpongeBob and company. It begins as a tender, yet bittersweet ensemble number which turns vibrant and hopeful.

SpongeBob SquarePants - The New Musical begins performances November 6 at the Palace Theater on Broadway. The CD is already on sale. Buy the CD. After you listen to it, you'll want to get your show tickets.


Conductor: Julie McBride - Concert Master: Sylvia D'Avanzo - Violin: Sean Carney, Katherine Livolsi-Landau - Viola: Rob Taylor, Orlando Wells - Cello: Deborah Assael - Keyboards: Julie McBride, Matt Gallagher, Matt Hinkley - Piano, Organ, Accordion: Matt Gallagher - Electric and Acoustic Guitars: Michael Aarons, Ken Brescia - Banjo, Ukulele: Michael Aarons - Lap Steel Guitar: Ken Brescia - Acoustic and electric bass guitar: Randy Landau - Saxophone and clarinet: Dave Noland, Aaron Heick - Flute: Dave Noland - Bass clarinet and oboe: Aaron Heick - Trumpet, Flugelhorn: Tony Kadleck - Trombone: Keith O'Quinn - Penny Whistle and Kazoo: Julie McBride - Drums: Damien Bassman - Foley Artist/Percussion: Mike Dobson - Synthesizer Programmer: Randy Cohen - Associate Synthesizer Programmers: Taylor Williams, Jeremy King.

Recording Credits:

Recorded by Lawrence Manchester on August 9-12, 2016 at DiMenna Center for Classical Music, New York. Additional engineering: Derik Lee, Isaiah Abolin, Ian Kagey. Assistant engineers: Akihiro Nishimura, Doug Iszlai, Robert Cooper, Nate Odden. Digital Editing: Ian Kagey Mixed by Lawrence Manchester. Mastered by Ryan Smith at Sterling Sound, New York, NY. Recording Services provided by Audiosmith Digital Solutions. Recording Production Manager: Janet Weber. Music Assistant: Timothy Hanson. Tappers directed by Lou Castro. Taping by: Gavin Lee, Mark Ledbetter, Curtis Holbrook, Juliane Godfrey.

1. Prologue
2. Bikini Bottom Day – by Jonathan Coulton
3. No Control – by David Bowie
4. BFF – by Plain White T's
5. When the Going Gets Tough – by T.I.
6. (Just a) Simple Sponge – by Panic! At the Disco
7. Daddy Knows Best – by Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
8. Hero is My Middle Name – by Cyndi Lauper
9. Super Sea Star Savior – by Yolanda Adams
10. Tomorrow Is – by The Flaming Lips
11. Poor Pirates – by Sara Bareilles
12. Bikini Bottom Boogie – by Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith
13. Chop to the Top – by Lady Antebellum
14. (I Guess I) Miss You – by John Legend
15. I'm Not a Loser – by They Might Be Giants
16. Best Day Ever – by Tom Kenny & Andy Paley
17. Finale: Bikini Bottom Day Reprise
18. SpongeBob SquarePants Theme

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The Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft docket with the ISS. Photo ESA/NASA/Science Museum
on display through November 19, 2017 at the National Science and Media Museum in Yorkshire, England is the Soyuz TMA-19M descent module, the historic spacecraft that brought Major Tim Peake back to Earth after his mission to the International Space Station.

Bearing the scars of an incredible adventure, the capsule on display offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get up close to an object that's been on the ultimate journey and marvel at something truly out of this world.

On December 15, 2015, Major Tim Peake embarked on the Principia mission to the International Space Station, where he spent six months orbiting Earth. Thanks to extraordinary leaps in communication technology, people could watch as he broadcast live experiments, walked in space and even ran the London Marathon - albeit from outer space.

June 18, 2016, Tim returned to Earth in the Soyuz TMA-19M descent module. Now, thanks to the Science Museum Group’s partnership with Samsung, you can get up close and personal with this historic spacecraft - complete with scorch marks from its re-entry through the atmosphere.

To accompany this extraordinary exhibit the museum is also offering an immersive new family show taking place in the Wonderlab Studio every weekend beginning yesterday, September 30. . Find out what chemistry and color can tell us about distant planets and stars, and how we use telescopes, satellites and rockets to explore our universe.


JENNIFER LOPEZ has donated $1M to aid hurricane victims in Puerto Rico.

She also has teaming up with Mark Cuban and Dallas Mavericks player J.J. Barea to get generators to the island.

BRUNO MARS has expanded his support of the Grammy Museum's Grammy Camp with the Bruno Mars Scholarship.

Thanks to the generous support of the five time Grammy winner and 21-time Grammy nominee, five additional students will receive financial assistance for Grammy Camp. The scholarship will cover the tuition, housing, and transportation of one qualified high school student each year for the next five years.

Grammy Camp, now celebrating its 14th year, is the Grammy Museum's signature music industry camp for U.S. high school students. This scholarship was first established in 2014 through a grant from Mars to the Hawai’i Community Foundation in honor of his late mother for students from the Hawai’i area to attend Grammy Camp. It has now expanded to include applicants from across the country.

The deadline to apply is March 31, 2018.

ALAN ALDA is the keynote speaker for its 36th Annual University of Nevada, Reno Foundation Banquet. on Tuesday, October 3, 2017.

Best known for portraying Hawkeye Pierce on M*A*S*H, which earned him five Emmys for acting, writing, and directing. He is the only actor in history to win in each category for a single series.

A life-long lover of science, Alda will discuss Getting Beyond a Blind Date With Science - how science affects us all and the importance of understanding and relating to science.

Established in 1981 as a fundraising event for the University of Nevada, Reno Foundation, the Foundation Banquet is the premier social event in the community. Presented by the Reynolds School of Journalism, the Alan Alda speech is sold out.

TOSCA - SPECIAL NIGHT GALA takes place Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at the Kings Head Theatre in London.

Join the King's Head Theatre for a special gala performance of Puccini's classic tragedy, Tosca followed by an after-show reception with drinks, canapés, live music and the opportunity to meet the cast and creative team.

Proceeds from this one-off event will raise crucial funds to help secure the future of the King's Head Theatre, and ensure that they are able to keep producing high quality, accessible and affordable opera for years to come.

Paris. August, 1944. As the Second World War rages on, lovers Tosca and Cavaradossi give refuge to a political prisoner and find themselves ensnared in the machinations of the tyrannical head of the Paris Gestapo, Scarpia. As Charles De Gaulle’s liberation movement advances and US troops tighten their net around the Nazi occupiers, everything Tosca holds dear is about to be torn apart.

"The King’s Head Theatre’s brand new production of Puccini’s searing thriller of power and passion relocates the action to the heart of the twentieth century’s defining conflict. With rousing melodies, an intimate setting and a brand new libretto by Becca Marriott and Adam Spreadbury-Maher, this is Tosca as you’ve never seen it before."

Featuring Becca Mariott, Roger Paterson, Michael Georgiou, Philippa Boyle, Martin Lindau, Przemyslaw Baranek and Tom Isherwoood.

Tosca has performances through October 28, 2017.

BRIAN STOKES MITCHELL will perform with the Kansas City Symphony in an October 7 concert of Broadway tunes from his nearly three-decade career. Taking place in Helzberg Hall at the Kauffman Center in Kansas City, Missouri, the concert is designed as a benefit for Kansan City Young Audiences.

A veteran of 10 Broadway shows that have garnered him a slew of awards including two Tonys and most recently induction into the Theatre Hall of Fame, Brian Stokes Mitchell will be performing some best-loved classics from Broadway and the American Songbook, including selections from Camelot, Les Misérables, Stephen Sondheim, Man of La Mancha, South Pacific, Les Misérables, a Gershwin medley and compositions by Sondheim and, for the first time with any orchestra, selections from his upcoming album, Plays With Music.

TOMMY CHONG has donated his signed, custom golf cart to help Hurricane Harvey victims.

The charity raffle is being run by Angel’s Garage, which added metallic paint and colored lights. Charities that benefit are Feeding Texas, The L.A Kitchen in Los Angeles, the Food Bank of NY, San Antonio Food Bank, and the North Texas Food Bank in Dallas TX

"This cart is painted with Holographic Metallic flakes, detachable colored lights for fun, Battery Charger and interior has Wood Grain, pull out cup holders, glove box, on-board cooler, (Bonus it has its own drain plug. ) Cart has its own Club for protection, snap on cover, the cart has Blinkers turn signals and lights, brake lights. Its really cool."

Winner is responsible for transportation of golf cart.


The famed festival which runs October 5-9 will open with the showing of Alison Chernick’s documentary about famous violinist and conductor Itzhak Perlman.

Perlman, an East Hampton resident, will be in attendance at the October 5 Guild Hall event.

The HIFF will also honor several iconic performers.

Grammy, Golden Globe and Tony-nominated actor Patrick Stewart will receive the Variety Creative Impact in Acting Award. The award will be presented by Steven Gaydos, Vice President and Executive Editor of Variety, at A Conversation With Patrick Stewart on Saturday, October 7, which Gaydos will also moderate.

Oscar-winning stage and screen legend Julie Andrews will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award on October 7, 2017.

Conversations with notables are also a high point.

Julie Andrews will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award. Photo: HIFF
Jennifer Garner, Deon Cole, Michael Finley, Spencer Haywood, Oscar Robertson and P.J. Tucker will attend the festival.

A conversation with Annette Bening, a four-time Academy Award-nominee and two-time Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild Award winner, is slated for Sunday, October 8, at East Hampton Middle School, moderated by HIFF Board Member and actor Bob Balaban.

Bening also stars in one of the festival’s Spotlight films, Paul McGuigan’s Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, opposite Jamie Bell, which will screen during the festival on Sunday, October 8, and Monday, October 9, at Guild Hall.

A conversation with two-time Emmy Award winner Rob Reiner will be moderated by Alison Willmore. Reiner's latest film, LBJ, starring Woody Harrelson, will screen at HIFF25. Reiner is currently in post-production on Shock and Awe also starring Harrelson, Tommy Lee Jones, James Marsden, Jessica Biel, Milla Jovovich, and Reiner himself.

In addition to the documentary about Itzhak Perlman, seven additional world premiers will be showcased.

Andy Serkis makes his directing debut with Breathe. Serkis is best-known for his motion-capture work as Gollum in the Lord of the Rings trilogy and Caesar in the Planet of the Apes series.

Produced by Jonathan Cavendish, written by William Nicholson, Breathe features Andrew Garfield, Claire Foy, Tom Hollander, and Hugh Bonneville in the inspiring true story of activists Robin and Diana Cavendish who broke the stigma surrounding disability rights by launching a groundbreaking campaign.

Darkest Hour directed by Joe Wright is billed as a thrilling drama centered on Winston Churchill - starring Academy Award nominee, Gary Oldman in his most forceful and transformative role.

The First To Do It directed by Coodie Simmons and Chike Ozah recounting the life of Earl Lloyd, the first African American to play in the NBA, which features interviews with NBA players Carmelo Anthony and Kawhi Leonard.

Tiffany Bartok’s Larger Than Life: The Kevyn Aucoin Story, profiling the professional and personal life of iconic makeup artist Kevyn Aucoin, featuring interviews with Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss and more.

Patrick Stewart will receive the Variety Creative Impact in Acting Awarda. Photo: HIFF
Onur Tukel’s The Misogynists, a narrative following the tales of characters coming and going from a hotel room on the night of the 2016 general election, starring Dylan Baker.

Brendan & Emmett Malloy’s The Tribes of Palos Verdes, a coming-of-age drama centering around the lives of a family who move to affluent LA suburb Palos Verdes, starring Jennifer Garner, Justin Kirk, Elisabeth Rohm, Goran Višnji, and Joely Fisher.

Josh Klausner’s Wanderland, which was filmed on the East End, telling the story of a character escaping his isolated life only to find himself lost on a surreal, all-night musical odyssey of misadventures, starring Tate Ellington, Dree Hemingway, Ronald Guttman, Harris Yulin & Tara Summers.

The Tribes of Palos Verdes directed by Emmett Malloy and Brendan Malloy stars Maika Monroe and Jennifer Garner. Set amidst the sun-kissed beaches and crystal blue waters of the California coast, movie is "a stirring look at how life’s greatest challenges forge who we become."

The Festival is proud that "selections from all of our programs continue to play an important role during awards season. 2017 marked the 7th time in a row that a film in the Festival has become the eventual Best Picture winner at the Oscars, making HIFF the only Festival on the East Coast with such a distinction."


CHICAGO CONTINUES AS A LAUNCHING PAD for Broadway shows with the announcement that the musical based on Cher's life, appropriately titled The Cher Show will mount its pre-Broadway world premiere at the Oriental Theatre in Chicago, running June 12 – July 15, 2018.

Using her songbook to tell her story, the musical will feature a book by Rick Elise, direction by Jason Moore, choreography by Christopher Gattelli and musical supervision and orchestrations by Daryl Waters.

THE 60th ANNIVERSARY DUBLIN THEATRE FESTIVAL has opened. This year's festival features 31 full-scale productions, 352 performances, over 17 stages, and runs for 18 days and nights.

COMPOSER JIMMY WEBB who collaborated with Glen Campbell on over 100 songs spanning 50 years is back on tour with his multimedia show Jimmy Webb: The Glen Campbell Years. Campbell recorded more than 80 Webb compositions with Galveston, By the Time I Get to Phoenix and Wichita Lineman becoming the foundation of Campbell's stage performances.

Webb began his tribute tour in 2015. In August of this year Campbell died from Alzheimer's. Webb played Wichita Lineman at Campbell's memorial service.

Webb has now returned to American from London where he recorded BBC's Mastertapes on Radio 4 and participated in An Evening with Jimmy Webb at St. James Church Piccadilly. He's back on tour with Jimmy Webb: The Glen Campbell Years in which he pays homage to his friend and collaborator, with virtual duets, new music videos, and stories of how these iconic songs came to be. His tour includes a stop October 6, 2017 with An Evening with Jimmy Webb at The Kessler Theater in Dallas and an October 7 staging of Jimmy Webb - The Glen Campbell Years at the Grand 1894 Opera House in Galveston, Texas.

KWAME KWEI ARMAH has been announced as taking over from David Lan next year as artistic director of London's Young Vic.

The actor and director will leave his current post as artistic director of Center Stage in Baltimore, Maryland, in June 2018. He is currently in rehearsals for his production of Ibsen's The Lady from the Sea at the Donmar in London.

THE SIMON AND GARFUNKEL STORY direct from its success in London’s West End, a sold out UK tour, The Simon & Garfunkel Story uses huge projection photos and original film footage to help tell their story. Directed by Dean Elliott with musical supervision by Elliott and Evan Jay Newman, this 50th Anniversary Celebration also features a full live band performing all the hits including Mrs. Robinson, Cecilia, Bridge Over Troubled Water, Homeward Bound, and many more. October 10, 2017 at the Ordway Theatre in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Featuring Taylor Bloom and Ryan M. Hunt. musicians Evan Jay Newman Music Director/Keyboards; electric guitarist and singer Las Vegan Matt Baldoni; vocalist, guitarist, and bassist Randy McStine; drummer Bob Sale. Sound Design – Dan Hamilton. Video Design – Keith Skretch & Josh Woods. Lighting Design – Randell Gillespie.

OCTOBER 1 is National Pumpkin Spice Day and World Vegetarian Day. Taco Tuesday is also appropriately National Soft Taco Day while Wednesday is simply a non specific National Taco Day. Thursday is National Apple Betty Day. Friday is National Noodle Day and Saturday is National Frappe Day.


AMAZING FANTASY 15 a comic book published in 1962 with the first appearance of a new super hero called Spider Man, was bought by a then 8-year-old Rex Shoemaker for 12 cents. He wrote his name in pencil on the cover.

Last week at the Wichita, Kansas toy show which ran through Thursday, he sold it for $12,000. Buyer was book buyer and collector Joel Magee, also known as The Toy Scout. As first reported by the Wichita Eagle, it is one of the most collectible of all comic books.

Raised in Sioux City, Iowa, Magee began his family-owned business in 1996. Now, his company includes his wife, daughter, nephew, assistant, and field manager. He travels the country to buy nostalgic toys. According to the Dallas Morning News he then "refurbishes the toys he finds and resells them to collectors."

At a 2014 Dallas Vintage Toy-buying Show he reportedly spent about $60,000 on at least 1,500 items.

THE LATIN RECORDING ACADEMY has announced the nominees for the 18th Annual Latin Grammy Awards. Winners will be revealed November 16, 2017, during the 18th Annual Latin Grammy Awards Premiere and telecast ceremonies, live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, broadcast over the Univision Network.

Leading the list are Residente with nine nominations, Maluma with seven, Shakira with six, and Kevin Jiménez ADG, Juanes, and Mon Laferte with five each.

In addition to the top nominees, several artists and technical professionals received four nominations each: Rafa Arcaute (producer and engineer), Tom Coyne (engineer), Luis Fonsi, Vicente García, Nicky Jam, Natalia Lafourcade, Danay Suarez, and Daddy Yankee.

The Record Of The Year list is composed of a diverse group of artists, genres and interesting collaborations, such as: La Flor De La Canela - Rubén Blades: El Surco - Jorge Drexler: Quiero Que Vuelvas - Alejandro Fernández: Despacito - Luis Fonsi featuring Daddy Yankee: El Ratico - Juanes featuring Kali Uchis: Amárrame - Mon Laferte featuring Juanes: Felices Los 4 - Maluma: Vente Pa' Ca - Ricky Martin featuring Maluma: Guerra - Residente: Chantaje - Shakira featuring Maluma.

The Latin Grammy Awards are voted on by The Latin Recording Academy's international membership body of music makers, who represent all genres and creative disciplines, including recording artists, songwriters, producers, mixers, and engineers. The 2017 nominees were selected from nearly 10,000 submissions across 48 categories during the eligibility period July 1, 2016 through May 31, 2017.

THE HAROLD AND MIMI STEINBERG CHARITABLE TRUST has announced that Ayad Akhtar and Lucas Hnath are the recipients of 2017 Steinberg Playwright Awards, which will be presented December 4, 2017 at Lincoln Center Theater in New York City.

Akhtar’s Discraced won the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama; it subsequently ran on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre and was nominated for the 2015 Tony Award for Best Play.

Hnath’s A Doll’s House, Part 2 recently concluded a Tony-nominated Broadway run.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the “Mimi” Awards, which are presented to honor the outstanding artistry and accomplishments of some of the most gifted American playwrights. Each recipient will receive a cash award of $50,000.

Founded by the late Harold Steinberg, who was a prominent real estate developer, The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust primarily donates to arts and cultural organizations, higher education, and the environment.

Jane Kaczmarek stars as the Stage Manager. Photo by: Daniel Rader
by Thornton Wilder.

Directed by Tony Award-nominated Sheryl Kaller.

A groundbreaking new co-production by Pasadena Playhouse and Deaf West Theatre.

Our Town is composed of deaf and hearing actors. The production will be performed in American Sign Language and English in a seamless ballet. Acclaimed actress Jane Kaczmarek stars as the Stage Manager. In addition Kaczmarek, the cast features: Deric Augustine as George Gibbs, Harold Foxx as Howie Newsome, Sandra Mae Frank as Emily Webb, Russell Harvard as Mr. Webb, Dot Marie Jones as Mrs. Soames, Troy Kotsur as Simon Stimson, Annika Marks as Mrs. Webb, Sharon Pierre-Louis as Emily Webb, Alexandria Wailes as Mrs. Gibbs, and Jud Willford as Mr. Gibbs.

The ensemble: On Shiu, Natasha Ofili, Ivan Martinez, Amanda McDonough, Leonard Kelly-Young, David Gautreaux, Marie-France Arcilla.

The creative team includes award-winning choreographer David Dorfman, scenic designer David Meyer, costume designer Ann Closs Farley, lighting designer Jared A. Sayeg, co-sound designer Leon Rothenberg, co-sound designer Jonathan Burke, associate director Srda Vasiljevic, ASL masters Joshua Castile and Jevon Whetter, and production stage manager Jenny Slattery.

“The play is a touchstone of American theatre,” said Deaf West Theatre’s Artistic Director DJ Kurs. “It’s thrilling to adapt one of the classic works of the American stage with a director like Sheryl Kaller and a cast of this caliber but also to perform it before an audience that, more than ever, is unified in an understanding and appreciation of the possibilities of a bilingual staging in American Sign Language and English.”

The 2017/18 season marks Producing Artistic Director Danny Feldman’s inaugural season for Pasadena Playhouse, which celebrates its centennial this year.

Performances run through October 22, 2017, with the official press opening on Sunday, October 1, 2017 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena, CA.

RAGS written by composer Charles Strouse, lyricist Stephen Schwartz, and late writer Joseph Stein. This production will have a new version of the show’s book, which David Thompson has adapted from Stein’s original.

Directed by Rob Ruggiero.

Welcome to the new world! Fresh from Ellis Island, a young mother and her son search for a new life and a sense of home as the 20th century beckons. The streets of Manhattan’s Lower East Side may not be paved with gold, but they echo with the music of opportunity, optimism and hope. A ravishing score by the songwriters of Fiddler on the Roof, Wicked and Annie colors a sweeping saga of America’s immigrant past.

Samantha Massell will star in the central role of Rebecca Hershkowitz, with Christian Michael Camporin as her son David.

The cast also features Sean MacLaughlin as Sal Russo, Sara Kapner as Bella Cohen, Adam Heller as Avram Cohen, Mitch Greenberg as Jack Blumberg, Emily Zacharias as Anna Blumberg, Lori Wilner as Rachel Brodsky, David Harris as Max Bronfman, Nathan Salstone as Ben Levitowitz, as well as JD Daw, Ellie Fishman, Danny Lindgren, Sarah Solie, Jeff Williams, Catalina Gaglioti, Giovanni DiGabriele, and Gordon Beck.

Scenic Design by Michael Schweikardt. Costume Design by Linda Cho. Lighting Design by John Lasiter. Projection Design by Luke Cantarella Sound Design by Jay Hilton. Wig & Hair Design by Mark Adam Rampmeyer. Orchestrations by Dan DeLange. Vocal Arrangements by David Loud. Music Direction by Michael O'Flaherty. Choreographed by Parker Esse.

Performances begin October 6 at Goodspeed Musicals with the official opening set October 25 for a run through December 10 in East Haddam, Connecticut.

THIS ONE’S FOR THE GIRLS a musical by Dorothy Marcic.

Directed by Tamara Kangas Erickson.

Musical direction by Zachary Ryan.

Starring Traci Bair, Aneesa Folds, Jana Robbins, and Haley Swindal.

Called "a high-energy celebration of American women," it's officially described as: "This fascinating and original new musical looks at the role of women over the past 100+ years through 40 Top 40 hits. From the sad laments of fragile female victims -A Bird in a Gilded Cage - to the angry anthems of women who are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore - I Am Woman and You Don't Own Me.

Writer Dorothy Marcic also created the hit musical Sistas, now in its sixth smash year. Sistas is the longest-running African American musical in New York history. Dr. Marcic is a professor at Columbia University, a former Fulbright Scholar and author of 14 books including Managing with the Wisdom of Love, Respect: Women and Popular Music and, most recently, Love Lift Me Higher.

Set to begin Off-Broadway performances Saturday, October 7th. at St. Luke’s Theatre in New York City.

TARTUFFE very loosely adapted and even more loosely translated by Andy Jones from the Molière play by the same name.

Directed by Jillian Kelley.

"In 2013, English Theatre Artistic Director Jillian Keiley opened her first season at the National Arts Centre with Molière’s classic Tartuffe, playfully re-imagined for pre-confederate Newfoundland, complete with sharp wit and biting satire courtesy of Andy Jones. This fall, as part of Canada’s sesquicentennial, the NAC takes this smash hit back from whence it came!"

Starring Robert Joy as Tartuffe, Greg Malone as Madame Pernelle, Joey Tremblay as Orgon, Eric Davis as Cleante, David Coombe as Valere, Courtney Brown as Mariane, Lois Brown as Flipote, Paul Dunn as Damis, Rory Lambert as Royale/Loyale, Amelia Manuel as Dorine and Alison Woolridge as Elmire.

Set Designer Patrick Clark. Lighting Designer Leigh Ann Vardy. Costume Designer Marie Sharpe. Assistant Director Kevin Woolridge. Stage Manager Samira Rose. Assistant Stage Manager Chantal Hayman.

This fall, as part of Canada’s sesquicentennial, the NAC takes this smash hit back from whence it came.

Performances October 4 at the Stephenville, Arts & Culture Centre - October 7 at the Corner Brook, Arts & Culture Centre - October 11 at the Grand Falls-Windsor, Arts & Culture Centre and October 14, 2017 Gander, Joseph R. Smallwood Arts & Culture Centre, Newfoundland.

12 ANGRY MEN written by Reginald Rose.

Directed By Michael Matthews.

Be part of the courtroom action in this classic drama in which 12 jurors decide the fate of a young man accused of murder. What will the verdict be? Find out in this suspenseful thriller that pits passionate jurors against one another in a bold examination of the American justice system.

Matthew Henerson as Juror 1 - Mueen Jahan as Juror 2 - Richard Burgi as Juror 3 - Rick Cosnett as Juror 4 - Dennis Renard as Juror 5 - Tony Sancho as Juror 6 - John Massey as Juror 7- Seamus Dever as Juror 8 - Andrew Barnicle as Juror 9 - John Colella as Juror 10 - David Nevell as Juror 11 - Erik Odom as Juror 12 and Daniel Berlin as the Bailiff.

October 4 - 22, 2017 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna, CA.

based on Anthony Burgess’ 1962 literary masterpiece.

Directed by Alexandra Spencer-Jones.

A Clockwork Orange is a groundbreaking classic of ultra violence and sexuality, luring audiences into the glass-edged, testosterone-filled underworld of a dystopian future with the explosive story of little Alex and his rebellious gang of teenage Droogs.

Widely considered a cultural landmark since its release in 1962, A Clockwork Orange has been declared one of the "100 Greatest Novels of All Time" by both Time Magazine and The Guardian, the latter deeming it "a stunningly original novel that opened many literary doors for the work of subsequent British writers...a volume bursting with linguistic energy that continues to startle and inspire generations of new readers." Kubrick’s film, released in 1971, was an immediate hit with American audiences and critics, grossed over ten times its budget, and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture.

Jonno Davies, who led the play’s London cast, makes a New York Stage debut. Joining Davies in the play’s New York cast is Matt Doyle as Georgie, Sean Patrick Higgins as Dim, Brian Lee Huynh as Frank/Dr. Brodsky, Timothy Sekk as Chaplain/Deltoid, Aleksander Varadian as Marty/Warder, Ashley Robinson as Minister/Old Woman, Jimmy Brooks as F-Me Pumps/Governor, Misha Osherovich as Pete, and Jordan Bondurant.

The play features original music composed by Heaven 17 frontman Glenn Gregory & Berenice Scott, with additional music by Davie Bowie, Placebo, Muse and Frankie Goes to Hollywood, among others. Lighting Design is by James Baggaley, Sound Design is by Emma Wilk and Costume Coordination is by Jennifer A. Jacob.

The production is currently playing Off-Broadway at New World Stages, New York City.


FINLAND'S RAJATON IN CONCERT enjoy Finland’s double-platinum a capella sensation Rajaton. With close harmonies honed by razor-fine pitch, this genre-defying sextet flaunts its vocal chops in an eclectic performance of pop, jazz, classical and folk tunes. Part of the Ideas of North Festival, this performance takes place Friday, October 6, 2017, at the NAC in, Ottawa, Canada.

B-52s Cindy Wilson, and Kate Pierson have been singing together since they shared a flaming drink in an Athena, Georgia Chinese restaurant in .1976 perform tonight, Sunday, October 1, 2017 in Gretna, LA at the Gretna Heritage Festival. On Thursday, October 5, they can be enjoyed in Huntington, NY at the The Paramount. Saturday's gig is in Waterbury, CT at the Waterbury Municipal Stadium. Next Sunday, October 8, they are in Englewood, NJ in the Bergen Performing Arts Center.

RICKY GERVAIS opens a four night stand on Wednesday, October 4 at the Eventim Apollo in London.

IMAGINE DRAGONS on stage October 3 at the Hollywood Bowl in Hollywood CA. On October 4 they can be found at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA. Their stop on October 4 is in Sacramento, CA at the Golden 1 Center. Then they star in the KeyArena at Seattle Center in Seattle, Washington, October 6, 2017.

COLDPLAY performs Monday, October 2 in Portland, Oregon at the Moda Center. On Wednesday the stop is in Santa Clara, California at Levi's Stadium. Next Sunday, they star in San Diego at the Qualcomm Stadium.

TIM McGRAW AND FAITH HILL are in Texas this week with a show Thursday, October 5, at the AT&T Center in San Antonio. On Friday they are in Houston at the Toyota Center. Next Saturday they are on stage in Dallas at the American Airlines Center.

ETHAN BORTNICK performs next Sunday, October 8, 2017 at the Rococo Theatre in Lincoln, Nebraska.

GRAHAM NASH a two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee-with Crosby, Stills, and Nash and with the Hollies. He was also inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame twice, as a solo artist and with CSN and a Grammy award winner, in on tour with a stop tonight, Sunday, October 1, at Asbury Hall at Babeville, Buffalo, NY, Monday's gig is at the Centrepointe Mainstage Theatre in Ottawa, Canada. On October 4 he's at the Burlington Performing Arts Centre in Burlington, Ontario. The following night he can be enjoyed at the Rose Theatre in Brampton, Ontario. The show October 6 is at the Capitol Centre North Bay, Ontario.

U2 have a week of sold out concerts. They open a two nighter Tuesday, October 4, in Mexico City at Foro Sol. On Saturday they perform in Bogota CO at the Estadio El Campin.

JERRY SEINFELD telling funny stories Thursday, October 5, at the Beacon Theatre in New York City.

THE VIENNA BOYS CHOIR in a program titled Bella Italia, features popular and classical compositions from Italy, to include classical pieces by Vivaldi, Rossini, Verdi, and other Italian composers, along with such popular favorites as Santa Lucia, O sole mio, Volare, and more - October 6 at the Kauffman Center in Kansas City, MO.


HUGH HEFNER founder of Playboy magazine died September 27, 2017 at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles. He was 91.

Born in Chicago, after graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a degree in psychology he first worked as a copywriter for Esquire – where he reportedly left because he didn't get a $5 raise - Hefner decided to start his own publication and he raised $8,000 from 45 investors to launch Playboy in December 1953.

It was an instant success.

Often pictured in pajamas – or a silk smoking jacket - and smoking a pipe, Hefner personally promoted the Playboy philosophy as the magazine became an amalgam of nude photographs of gorgeous women and intellectual writing.

A multi-millionaire, his net worth at the time of his death was over $43 million due to his success as the founder of Playboy. Hefner was also a political activist and philanthropist active in several causes and public issues.

"My father lived an exceptional and impactful life as a media and cultural pioneer and a leading voice behind some of the most significant social and cultural movements of our time in advocating free speech, civil rights and sexual freedom," Cooper Hefner, Hefner's son and chief creative officer at Playboy Enterprises, said in a statement.

In 1949, Hefner married Northwestern University student Mildred ("Millie") Williams. They had two children: daughter Christie Hefner and son David. The two were divorced in 1959. His romances include those with Donna Michelle, Marilyn Cole, Lillian Müller, Shannon Tweed, Barbi Benton, Karen Christy, Sondra Theodore, and Carrie Leigh.

Hefner had a minor stroke in 1985 at the age of 59. After re-evaluating his lifestyle, he made several changes. The wild, all-night parties were toned down significantly and in 1988, daughter Christie began to run the Playboy empire. The following year, he married Playmate of the Year Kimberley Conrad. They had two sons: Marston Glenn and Cooper Bradford. They separated in 1998.

After a 7-year relationship with Holly Madison he became engaged to Crystal Harris who broke off their engagement five days before their planned wedding. The two later reconciled, and on December 31, 2012, Harris and Hefner married at the Playboy Mansion in a small private ceremony; he was 86 and she was 26.

His younger brother Keith succumbed to cancer at the age of 87, one day before Hefner's 90th birthday. Hefner is survived by Harris and his four children.

FRANK M. YOUNG founder of Houston’s Theatre Under the Stars, died Wednesday, September 20, 2017 in Palm Springs, California. He was 77.

Considered by some to be one of the most influential theater leaders in the country, iIn 1968, Young founded TUTS as an open-to-the-public musical theater company that performed under the night sky at the then-new Miller Outdoor Theatre. He led the company to become one of the city's largest performing arts groups. He established TUTS with a performance of the musical Bells Are Ringing, TUTS' first-ever show. Young would go on to producing more than 300 productions.

While in Houston Young also founded the National Alliance for Musical Theatre in 1986, a New York-based company that advocates and provides services for the development of musical theater and includes 160 member organizations.

After leaving Houston, Young became the first executive director of the 5th Avenue Musical Theatre Company in Seattle.

Young received numerous awards, including the 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Federation of Musicians. He earned commendations from President George H.W. Bush, Governor Ann Richards and five Houston mayors.

Young was involved with TUTS until 2006. Three years ago, he moved to Palm Springs, where he co-owned and managed Colt's Lodge, a boutique bed and breakfast

He leaves no immediate survivors.

MYRNA LAMB a playwright and lyricist died September 15, 2017 in her home in Point Pleasant Beach, NJ, of congestive heart disease. She was 87.

She graduated from The New School and Rutgers University.

Film critic and director Anselma dell'Olio selected her work for a feminist Theater production at the Martinique Theater in May 1969. Several of her works were produced by the Women's Interart Theatre in New York City, which had started around 1969. This theatre showcased work by women playwrights and directors.

Her 1970 musical Mod Donna, co-written with Susan Hulsman was considered the first women's liberation musical was staged at the Public Theater - then the New York Shakespeare Festival.

Her other works include Ballad of Brooklyn, which was staged at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in 1979; Crab Quadrille, staged by the Interart Theater in 1976; as well as several screenplays.

At the age of 18 she married Marvin Epstein, whom she met at a family wedding. Lamb continued to write as she raised two children. Her husband died in 1985 and she spent her later years living with family in New Jersey. She is survived by two daughters and two grandchildren.

ANNE JEFFREYS actress and singer died September 27, 2017. She was 94.

The blonde beauty became her career as a member of the New York Municipal Opera Company on a scholarship and sang the lead at Carnegie Hall in such things as La bohème, Traviata, and Pagliacci in 1940. Her role in the musical revue, Fun for the Money resulted in a movie contract.

She returned to the stage, playing lead roles on Broadway in productions such as the 1947 opera Street Scene, the 1948 Cole Porter musical Kiss Me, Kate (having replaced Patricia Morison) and the 1952 musical Three Wishes for Jamie.

With long-term husband Robert Sterling, who was first married to Ann Sothern, she appeared in the delightful CBS sitcom Topper (1953–1955), in which she was billed as "the ghostess with the mostest".

Her last television series was from 1984 to 2004, when she appeared on General Hospital as the wealthy socialite Amanda Barrington.

Jeffreys has been married twice. Her first marriage, to Joseph Serena, was annulled in 1949. It was during her New York run of Kiss Me Kate that she met and married fellow Broadway actor Robert Sterling in 1951. The couple were married until Sterling’s death in 2006. They had three sons who survive her: Jeffrey, Dana and Tyler as well as stepdaughter Tisha Sterling.

JUDY PARKER GAUDIO hit songwriter died September 14, 2017 at Vanderbilt University Hospital in Nashville, TN from respiratory complications. She was 79.

Among her most well-known songs are the 1976 #1 hit December, 1963 (Oh, What a Night) and Who Loves You, which were recorded by Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons.

Parker was introduced to the man she would marry, Bob Gaudio, a founding member of The Four Seasons, in 1973 at the Motown Studios in Los Angeles, while Bob was recording a Marvin Gaye/Diana Ross duet. They were married on April 5, 1981. In their 45 years together, they co-wrote a number of top 5 songs for Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons. Some of those were prominently featured in the Tony, Grammy, and Olivier Award-winning musical, Jersey Boys, which became the 12th longest-running musical in Broadway history.

The couple also co-wrote the title song for Neil Diamond's 1977 NBC TV special, Glad You’re Here with Me Tonight.

She is survived by her husband.

MONTY HALL the original host and co-creator of Let's Make a Deal, the long-running game show that debuted in 1963, died September 30, 2017 at his home in Beverly Hills from a heart attack. He was 96.

Hall was one of only three game show hosts on both Hollywood's and Canada's Walks of Fame, the others being Alex Trebek and Howie Mandel. In May 1988, the Government of Canada bestowed on him the prestigious Order of Canada for his humanitarian work in Canada and other nations of the world.

Hall received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2013 Daytime Emmy Awards.

His wife Marilyn Hall whom he wed in 1947 also died this year. The couple had three children: actress Joanna Gleason; Sharon Hall Kessler, head of television at Alcon Entertainment; and Richard Hall, a television producer.

Next Column: October 8, 2017
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