Broadway To Vegas



Copyright: September 11, 2016
By: Laura Deni


Gloria Allred wins settlement in Bill Cosby blacklisting event.
If you paid for your ticket, you get in.

That's the essence of a new federal court settlement filed last Thursday, September 8, 2016.

The filing pertains to a settlement between celebrity attorney Gloria Allred and the Georgia authority that runs the publicly-owned Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center in Atlanta, Georgia where disgraced comedian Bill Cosby performed his Far From Finished show in May 2015.

As the world knows Cosby is embroiled in a multitude of sexual misconduct allegations and Allred is representing 33 - or about half - of the women who have agreed to testify against Cosby.

Allred had a ticket and identification and attempted to attend the Cosby performance.

At the time she stated she peacefully showed her ID and ticket at the door. Instead of being admitted she was taken to a side room where two uniformed Cobb County police officers informed her of "bad news".

One of the officers told Allred she was not allowed to attend the show because her name was on a list compiled by Cosby's production team, according to a lawsuit which Allred later file.

Allred said she promised not to disrupt the performance but was informed she would be arrested for criminal trespassing if she didn't vacate the premises.

The famed attorney responded by filing a First Amendment lawsuit last November, claiming Cosby unfairly put her on a "security watch list" at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center.

Attempting to control who can't attend a performance is nothing new. Critics are momentarily loved if they write something nice and forever loathed if they have criticized. Performers and directors are at the forefront of attempting to "discourage" critics from attending their production if they feel they might be unjustly criticized.

If a person suspects they or their client are spoken about or mocked - or in anyway part of a performer's act without giving their permission, the performance is checked out. Usually the show is scoped out by investigators who know what to look for and how to present that information in a legal setting.

That may have been why Allred wanted to see the show.

It is understandable if a production refuses to comp a ticket to a person who is deemed to hold a grudge against something or someone connected to a production - and you have suitable reason to believe they cannot be objective. For producers, directors or stars to have their own black list to bar a person, who has purchased their own ticket, is a different matter - especially if the venue is in anyway public property or funded by tax dollars - or even a publicly traded corporation unless the stockholders have voted for the ban.

Bill Cosby's blacklisting of lawyer Gloria Allred should not have been enforced, according to that federal court settlement filed Thursday. The settlement in the Allred being kicked out situation calls for a $40,000 payment to Allred and a promise from the venue that performers won't be permitted to block law-abiding ticket-holders in the future.

"The Authority will not delegate to a performer the right to ban people from attending public performances at the Centre," the agreement accepted by a federal judge in Georgia said.

"So long as a person does not pose an immediate and objective threat to the safety of others, any member of the public holding a ticket for the listed public performance at the Centre may attend the show," the settlement states.

"A person who states, 'I will not disrupt the performance,' for example, is not someone who can be objectively determined as such a threat," the settlement signed by Allred reads.


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Jack Stuck envisions himself as a silhouetted profile strapped into a gas chamber chair in Self-Portrait from 1960–61. Photo: Norton Simon Museum
at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, CA through January 16, 2017 looks to mine the dark recesses of the mid-20th century and explore the creations made to exorcise the demons that plagued artists.

“No matter one’s station in life, the Dance with Death unites us all.”
—Anonymous, late medieval allegory

The small but emotionally powerful exhibit showcases 14 pieces which approach this sinister subject through the lenses of assemblage, painting and lithography, with works by Edward Kienholz, Joseph Cornell, Bruce Connor, George Herms, Clare Falkenstein and Jess, among others.

Lurking on the fringes of the 20th-century art world was something sinister, something not necessarily identifiable or easy to fit into a specific movement such as Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art or Minimalism.

Artists have turned to a multitude of mediums in order to express their anxieties, but more often than not, these works hold similar characteristics. Drab and muted blacks and browns make up the majority of these colorless palettes. Space is restricted, and figures and forms regularly find themselves in boxes, or boxes themselves are represented. Within these boxes, a convoluted and complex chaos writhes and struggles to overcome the confines of the frame.

Jack Stuck envisions himself as a silhouetted profile strapped into a gas chamber chair in Self-Portrait from 1960–61. The viewer voyeuristically looks in through one of the portholes of the chamber to see the artist calmly awaiting execution. Stuck does not rely on an overflow of materials to impart a sinister feel. The flat handling of the paint and the faint pencil lines lend a disquieting sense of foreboding.

A more viscerally vicious act is depicted in the lithograph Combat from 1965, by Leon Golub. Here, two forms are intertwined in violence, as one combatant raises a fist over the other. The bold, slashing lines lend themselves to the frenetic pace and anxiety of the physical confrontation - so much so, that there is no delineation between one assailant and the other in this struggle for power. Golub does not hide anything from viewers; he puts this clash between two bodies front and center, so that viewers are forced to confront their own fears of brutality.

Through multiple examples of assemblage, painting and lithography, Dark Visions: Mid-Century Macabre illustrates the ways in which artists have portrayed humankind’s struggle to come to terms with death and life’s evils - whether through catharsis, psychosis, or a portrayal of horrors.

Other works of art in the exhibition include Jess’ illuminated Assembly Lamp Eight, 1966—a seemingly old-fashioned lamp whose shade is comprised of photographs and glass lantern slides; Conner’s Homage to Minnie Mouse, 1959, a dark and mesmerizing assemblage with decomposing architectural features and fabric; Kienholz’s The Secret House of Eddie Critch, 1961, an old writing-desk inhabited by dismembered doll parts and animal fur; and Connor Everts’ Now the Act Is Consummated from his seminal Studies in Desperation lithographic series of late 1963, created in part as a response to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Dark Visions: Mid-Century Macabre is organized by Curatorial Associate Tom Norris.

Dave Laro, Free Suit for You, 2014, mixed media, 30 x 42 inches
Contemporary Art & Superhero Action. For decades popular culture has been fascinated by superheroes - their superhuman capabilities, their desire for truth and justice, and their ability to save the day.

Their storylines have captivated many, and their images have become contemporary idols throughout the world.

My Hero presents a rich array of work by over 50 international artists, including painting, illustration, photography, sculpture, mixed media and video, that celebrates and re-envisions the lives of iconic superheroes.

My Hero: Contemporary Art & Superhero Action was organized by Carrie Lederer, Curator of Exhibitions, Bedford Gallery, Lesher Center for the Arts, Walnut Creek, CA September 11-December 11, 2016 at the at the Huntsville Museum of Art in Huntsville, Alabama.


THE NEW YORK POPS UNDERGROUND with Montego Glover and Tony Yazbeck, hosted by Steven Reineke, Music Director of The New York Pops takes place Monday, September 19, 2016 at Feinstein's/54 Below in New York City.

VIP Champagne Reception followed by Dinner and Performance.

Proceeds benefit the New York Pops' PopEd music education programs.

Event chars are Hiliary and Bill Weldon.

ROYAL PHILHARMONIC 70th ANNIVERSARY GALA takes place Monday, September 19, at royal Albert Hall in London.

2016, 7.30pm In celebration of its platinum year, the Orchestra presents an iconic trio of outstanding artists on one stage in an evening of thrilling classical masterpieces. Charles Dutoit, Artistic Director and Principal Conductor, is joined by the phenomenal violinist and Principal Guest Conductor Pinchas Zukerman, and legendary pianist Martha Argerich.

The program includes Rossini's William Tell Overture, Schumann's Piano Concerto in A minor, Bruch's Violin Concerto No.1 and Stravinsky's The Firebird Suite (1919).

Funds raised at this concert will go towards the support and development of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra’s community and education program RPO Resound, which often runs events at the Royal Albert Hall in collaboration with the Hall’s own Education and Outreach team.


the original Broadway cast album of the musical comedy has been released on Broadway Records.

Disaster! parodies 1970s disaster movies like The Poseidon Adventure, The Swarm, Airport 1975 and Earthquake, featuring a score of period pop hits. It's set in one of the wildest decade ever, the 70s. If that decade was your parents' generation, don't turn up your nose. Disaster! features song segments from hits everyone knows.

Unforgettable 70s hits like Knock on Wood, Hooked on a Feeling, Sky High, Don't Cry Out Loud, When Will I Be Loved, Three Times a Lady, Hot Stuff, to the Hawaii Five-O Theme.

This CD has little dialogue, thus the story line isn't a factor. Listening to the CD and watching the stage performance is much along the same order of Altar Boyz. The songs will deliver one distinct impress as to meaning on the CD while the theatre patron will get a totally different version of the song's meaning, as it is performed within the context of the script. Altar Boys and Disaster! are the only two Broadway shows transferred to an original cast recording where I can recall that being the case.

That means that you don't need to have seen the stage musical to enjoy the CD. Listening to the CD will no doubt make you wish you could see the campy production. If you did manage to catch the stage version, this CD will bring back joyful memories.

Taken out of context to the stage musical, the CD is one famous song after another, recorded to listening perfection and performed by blue ribbon talent: Tony Award winner and 2016 Outer Critics Circle Award nominee Roger Bart, Tony Award nominee Kerry Butler, three-time Tony Award nominee Kevin Chamberlin, Tony Award nominee Adam Pascal, Tony Award winner Faith Prince, Drama Desk Award winner Rachel York, three-time Emmy Award nominee and Grammy Award nominee Seth Rudetsky, 2016 Tony Award and Drama League Award nominee Jennifer Simard, Max Crumm, 2016 Drama Desk Award nominee Baylee Littrell and Lacretta Nicole, and ensemble members Paul Castree, Casey Garvin, Travis Kent, Alyse Alan Louis, Maggie McDowell, Olivia Phillip, Catherine Ricafort and Brandon Rubendall.

The CD opens with the beat driven Hot Stuff with Adam Pascal backed an energetic chorus. The almost folk sounding version of The Lord's Prayer is next, performed by Jennifer Simard. The arrangement is reminiscent of the style the Catholic Church used during the 70s to try to lure younger parishioners.

A short excerpt from Theme from Mahogany performed by Lacretta Nicole echoes the sounds of the Diana Ross movie version, quickly segueing into the hard driven Saturday Night. Rachel York is a standout in Saturday Night and I Will Survive. Roger Bart's belting Don’t Cry Out Loud is sensational.

Bart also offers a vibrant although brief Do You Want To Make Love, while Without You is more of a full rendition. It's heart wrenching, poignantly sung by Adam Pascal.

The tempos and moods of the songs are expertly paced. There are a few mash-ups: Effective, statement making combination by Kerry Butler of I Am Woman with the almost mournful That's The Way I've Always Heard It Should Be, and an awesome disco Never Can Say Goodbye performed by Simard combined with Torn Between Two Lovers.

Mockingbird is rock, while Still the One is drum beat driven, West Coast swing dance rhythm, as is Knock on Wood, performed by Lacretta Nicole in her Broadway debut. The Hawaii Five-O Theme is short and precisely what you'd expect. When Will I Be Love begins with an Elvis Presley sounding guitar and is a short, but hard driven inquiry.

Kerry Butler and Adam Pascal perform a sweetly beautiful duet in I’d Really Love to See You Tonight, while Faith Prince and Kevin Chamberlin duet on the moving You’re Still The One.

The optimistic Daybreak is uplifting. The 29 sensational tracks end with Hooked on a Feeling.

It's easy to get hooked on this CD. Romping good fun listen. Buy and enjoy.

Created by Seth Rudetsky and Drew Geraci. Music direction is by Steve Marzullo, orchestrations by Joseph Joubert, vocal arrangements by Michael McElroy, music coordination by Charles Gordon


Conductor/Keyboard: Steve Marzullo. Keyboard 2: Lawrence Pressgrove and Rob Preuss. Guitar: Steven Bargonetti, Ron Jackson, Mark McCarron, Bass: Carl Carter. Drums: Raymond Mardhica. Tenor Sax, Clarinet, Flute: Scott Kreitzer. Trumpet: James Hynes, Nickolas Marchione. Trombone, Bass trombone Charles Gordon. Violin: Jorge Avila, Avril Brown, Ashley Horne, Justin Smith, Entcho Todorov, Cenovia Cummins. Celli: Mairi Dorman-Phaneuf, Katherine Cherbas.

Rich production photography Jeremy Daniel and cover image by Reagan Marshall with a package design by Robbie Rozelle allows CD listeners to enjoy the costumes designed by six-time Tony Award winner William Ivey Long

Engineered by Bart Migal. Mixed and Edited by Michael Croiter. Assistant Engineers Jorge Muelle and Matthias Winter. Mastered by Michael Fossenkemper at Turtle Tone Studios. Recorded at Avatar Studios, NYC. Mixed at Yellow Sound Lab, NYC.

On Wednesday, September 14, original Broadway cast members Roger Bart, Kerry Butler, Rachel York and Jennifer Simard will join show creator and event host Seth Rudetsky for a special live performance and CD signing at Barnes & Noble - Upper East Side, New York City, beginning at 7 p.m. Performances to include Do You Wanna Make Love? (Roger Bart, Kerry Butler), I Am Woman (Kerry Butler), Mockingbird (Rachel York, Seth Rudetsky), I Will Survive (Rachel York), and Never Can Say Goodbye (Jennifer Simard).


Four geezers under the watchful eye of a younger guy - with his own agenda - head into Asia to check things off their bucket list. No, not a difference version of Grumpy Old Men or The Bucket List, but a truly delightful, funny and entertaining NBC mini-series Better Late Than Never starring William Shatner, Henry Winkler, George Foreman, and Terry Bradshaw accompanied by younger comedian the tech-savvy Jeff Dye as they backpack through Asia without luxuries, experiencing new cultures. The series started productions in August 2015 and premiered August 23, 2016. I didn't stumble across it until last week.

Charming, delightful, totally entertaining - and you'll learn some fascinating things about Korea.

The entirely too short - three episode - reality-travel show series is an adaptation of the popular South Korean Grandpas Over Flowers series. The NBC show marked the first time a South Korean local variety program was adapted by a North American national broadcast network. The show's sponsors, Korea Tourism Organization, anticipated the advertising effect of the airing of the Korea episode on NBC prime time to amount to as much as 11 billion won or $9.2 million dollars.

What is immediate apparent is the brilliant casting in putting these five people together. Individually, the four "old codgers" have endearing personalities. Put them together and golden hilarity emerges. Add Dye who may occasionally have a smidgen of an impish glint in his eye, but you'd trust him with the safety of your grandmother - or in this case - four guys old enough to be grandfathers.

Written by Paul Greenberg, John Kennedy and veteran stand up comic the four-time Emmy award winning Carol Leifer, who once was a Las Vegas regular before deciding to spend most of her time writing television shows. They are spot on with everything.

Segments which had a high risk of becoming hokey - such as learning dance moves from the K-pop band Girls Generation in a music video shoot with the guys performing in garish costumes is precious and funny.

The personalities of the four players are ingratiating. They genuinely appear to be having a good time and are game for anything. Eating portions of live octopus which wiggles in your mouth (and is pointed out that the difficulty in swallowing the moving tentacles has caused death) or when they put their feet in buckets of water containing fish which then ate off dead skin cells makes for fascinating viewing.

They do get conned by Dye who took them to what they thought was the real - and dangerous DMZ. The crew had to have been in on it, but supposedly guide Jeff was the only member of the gang who knew Shatner, Winkler, Foreman and Bradshaw hasn't been taken to the real DMZ, but rather to a movie set at the KOFIC Namyangju Studios a couple of hours away from Seoul.

The fake DMZ set, shows the Joint Security Area in the DMZ, where North and South Korea meet. This set was built for the film, Joint Security Area. The $3 million mystery thriller stars Lee Young-ae, Lee Byung-hun and Song Kang-ho. It was directed by Park Chan-wook and is based on the novel DMZ by Park Sang-yeon. The film, which was shot on location in South Korea, concerns an investigation into the circumstances surrounding a fatal shooting incident within the DMZ, the heavily fortified border that separates North and South Korea.

It was the highest grossing film in Korean film history at the time and won Best Film at the 2000 Blue Dragon Film Awards and the 2001 Grand Bell Awards. In 2009, director Quentin Tarantino named the film as one of his twenty favorite films since 1992.

A stage musical titled JSA: the Musical opened in April 2014 at the Dongsoong Art Center in Seoul's theater district of Daehangno. It then got some legs and toured.

The fake DMZ set has become a tourist favorite - only Shatner, Winkler, Foreman and Bradshaw didn't realize until later that they weren't at the real deal. There was even an instance where they ran, thinking they were going to be shot. That's when Dye told the viewers, in effect - You don't think I was going to put them in danger, did you?

It's just a shame there aren't more episodes - or at least re-run the mini-series somewhere down the line. The final installment airs on Tuesday, September 13.

Along the way George Foreman who didn't have much of a childhood found his, and William Shatner discovered Buddhism.

That in itself is heartwarming.


Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson defends television show.
The Clark County (Las Vegas) Special Public Defender's Office filed a friend of the court brief last Tuesday, September 6, 2016, asking that the Nevada Supreme Court permit them to join in a request to prevent the Clark County District Attorney’s television show Las Vegas Law from filming trials.

The show is in its second season and is produced by My Entertainment TV. The show airs on Investigation Discovery "part of Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the world’s #1 pay-TV programmer reaching nearly 3 billion cumulative subscribers in 220 countries and territories."

Lawyers in the Nevada statewide defense group objecting to the program have contended that the Las Vegas Law production crew is not a news organization and should not be allowed to film court proceedings. They’ve also challenged the ethical standing of prosecutors who appear on the show.

The official description of the show reads: "With more than 60,000 cases a year, including high-profile homicides, robberies, gang-related crimes and assaults on the Strip, these aren’t stories pulled from a Hollywood script. They happen to real people just trying to live and let loose under the big lights of Sin City. Investigation Discovery’s (ID) new series Las Vegas Law offers exclusive access to District Attorney Steve Wolfson and his powerhouse team of prosecutors who work tirelessly alongside law enforcement officials to pursue justice in their community. Follow in real time as they assess the crime scene, interview victims and witnesses, strategize their case and ultimately chase a conviction in the courtroom. Shot in cinéma vérité and featuring surveillance footage and photography, the series immerses viewers in the high stakes, immensely dramatic environment that makes Vegas distinctive – and its crimes even more so."

Although Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson does have editorial input, the television crew is permitted to shadow prosecutors and defense lawyers minus a script or directorial control.

“The issues raised (by Special Public Defenders) are issues impacting not only an accused constitutional right to a fair and impartial jury and a fair trial,” Lisa Rasmussen a board member for the defense group wrote in her brief. “But the issues involve matters of public policy and the ethical considerations of counsel.”

There have been instances when defense attorneys have objected to their cases being filmed, including that of a recent murder trial. Over objections, the filming was permitted.

Producers of Las Vegas Law are required to follow media outlet rules including the filing of a media request regarding each case, which reportedly the producers did. Each judge has the discretion to grant or deny the media request. There is no record that Las Vegas Las has ever been denied access.

Last May Las Vegas Law co-executive producer Greg Klein and DA Wolfson took part in a panel discussion about the show at The University of Nevada in Las Vegas

Wolfson stressed the integrity of his office wasn't compromised by the presence of television cameras. That emphasized that none of his deputies were playing to the camera or anxious to get a case to trial so they could be on television.

“There were many occasions when the film crew was ready to film a trial,” Wolfson told the gathering, “and on the morning of trial, the defendant entered into a negotiation and pled guilty. And the camera crew was left with nothing for the week. And that’s because the prosecutors did their job. They didn’t take cases to trial just for the benefit of the project.”


SONGS AND STORIES WITH HARVEY GRANAT: ON JERRY HERMAN The popular noontime series returns with cabaret performer/Broadway producer/music historian Harvey Granat performing songs by legendary composers and lyricists, and sharing background stories - many of which come from his personal collection of letters and manuscripts - along with pianist David Lahm. Tony Award-winning producer Stewart Lane joins Granat and Lahm as a special guest. Thursday, September 15, at 92Y in New York City.

CAN I STILL BE CREATIVE IF I'M SOBER? was the title of a paneled event presented by the Betty Ford Center and MusiCares. The seminar explored the myth that sobriety negatively affects your ability to create; when in fact the opposite seems to be true.

The event took place Wednesday, September 7th, at the Betty Ford Center in Los Angeles.

Featured Panelists included: Paul Williams, Grammy and Academy Award-winning songwriter and member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame - Chuck Negron, formerly one of the three lead singers in the rock band Three Dog Night and winner of multiple Grammy Awards - Alonzo Bodden, Winner on NBC's Last Comic Standing and currently a regular on NPR's Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me! Gary Stromberg served as Moderator.

They discussed their journeys to recovery and the challenges and rewards they’ve discovered in long-term sobriety. A Q&A followed the free event.

GLENDA JACKSON the double Academy Award-winning legend, a quarter of a century after she gave up acting for politics, returns to play King Lear in Shakespeare's greatest tragedy, alongside an outstanding star company at The Old Vic in London. Previews begin October 25 with an official opening taking place November 4, 2016. The mounting runs through May 27, 2017.

Joining Jackson in the production are: Fehinti Balogun, Fiston Barek, Bessie Carter, William Chubb, Morfydd Clark, Jonathan Coote, George Eggay, Matt Gavan, Jane Horrocks, Joanne Howarth, Rhys Ifans, Celia Imrie, Karl Johnson, Stephen Kennedy, Simon Manyonda, Harry Melling, Clifford Rose, Mark Rose, Gary Sefton, James Staddon, Danny Webb, Sargon Yelda.

SEPTEMBER 13 is National Peanut Day, and September 14 is National Cream Filled Donut Day.


JERSEY BOYS is ending its Las Vegas run. The hit show will play their final performance at the Paris Las Vegas on September 18, 2016. The Broadway Tony Award winner opened at The Venetian in April 2008, and transferred to the Paris in March 2011.

The production set a record for a musical playing Las Vegas raking up 3,300 performances.

THE LATIN RECORDING ACADEMY has announced El Consorcio (Mocedades), Eugenia León, Ricardo Montaner, Ednita Nazario, and Piero as recipients of this year's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Carlos Mejía Godoy, Nelson Motta, and Rafael Solano Sánchez will receive the Trustees Award.

The honorees will be celebrated during a private ceremony on November 16 at Four Seasons Hotel in Las Vegas as part of the weeklong 17th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards festivities.

GLEN CAMPBELL was honored by the Academy of Country Music (ACM) with their ACM Career Achievement Award at the 2016 ACM Honors ceremony last week. In the late stage of Alzheimer's he was unable to attend the event.

Keith Urban, Blake Shelton, Dierks Bentley and Toby Keith paid tribute with a medley of the icon’s biggest hits.

Wonderful, but it's a shame that so many times awards are presented to those deserving after they are unable to truly enjoy the accolade.

MASTERVOICES has announced that Ted Sperling has renewed his contract as Artistic Director of MasterVoices through 2019. He will conduct all three productions in MasterVoices' Anniversary Season.

PEN NEW ENGLAND SONG LYRICS AWARD will be presented Monday, September 19, 2016 at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum in Boston.

Master of Ceremonies Elvis Costello will lead the celebration for the 2016 honorees John Prine and Kathleen Brennan & Tom Waits.

DREAM LOVER THE BOBBY DARIN MUSICAL by Fran Howson and John Michael Howson.

Directed by Simon Phillips.

A cast of 40 starring David Campbell, Caroline O'Connor, Hannah Fredericksen, Bert LaBonte, Martin Crewes and Marney McQueen backed by an 18-piece band.

The show presents great hits from the 50s and 60s including Mack The Knife, Beyond the Sea and the multi-million-seller Dream Lover.

Opening September 18 at the Lyric Theatre in Sydney, Australia.

THE LAST SHIP the semi-autobiographical lyrical musical by Sting who wrote the music and lyrics, with a book written by Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning writers John Logan and Brian Yorkey.

Pioneer Theatre Company artistic director Karen Azenberg directs and choreographs.

The Last Ship is the story of Gideon Fletcher. Gideon is a young man who upon the death of his father returns to the small ship-building town he left years before. The musical tells of his efforts to come to terms with his past while grappling with the man he has become. Drawing on his own childhood memories, Sting has fashioned this moving musical about the town in northern England in which he grew up:

“I didn’t want to work in the shipyards myself – it was a terrifying place,” said Sting when describing how he came to create The Last Ship to Park City’s KPCW in a recent interview. “I figured I had to escape. Music became my avenue of escape. But I always recognized how important that environment was to who I am and why I became who I became. So I wanted to go back and really pay tribute to the community I came from.”

In describing the play’s themes, Sting said, “It’s a play about work, the importance of work, the pride of work, the importance of community and family. Those issues are universal, and I think the people of Salt Lake City will get them, will appreciate them, and recognize in their own community and in their own work something that resonates with them too. I am extremely excited to come and visit and see the play.”

The cast features Bryant Martin and Ruthie Stephens in the respective roles of Gideon Fletcher and Meg Dawson with Dan Sharkey as Jackie White, Anne Tolepegin as Peggy, John Jellison as Father O'Brien, Paul Castree as Arthur, James Crichton as Tom, Bailee Johnson as Young Meg and Seth Pike as Young Gideon.

The ensemble includes Equity actors Zachary Berger, Mary Fanning Driggs, Lenny Daniel, Jaymes Hodges Paul-Jordan Jansen, William Mulligan, and Kilty Reidy. Local actors Bailey Cummings, Richie Call, Tamari Dunbar, Natalia Noble, Jamie Landrum, Arielle Schmidt and Cory Reed Stephens complete the cast.

The creative team includes Helen Gregory (musical director and conductor), James Noone (scenic designer), Gregory Gale (costume designer), Michael Gilliam (lighting designer), Joshua C. Hight (sound designer), Amanda French (hair and makeup designer), Alexandra Harbold (dramaturge), Sarah Shippobotham (dialect coach) and Mary P. Costello (production stage manager).

The Pioneer Theatre proudly states: "PTC’s production will be the first since the show’s Tony-nominated (Best Original Score) Broadway run in 2014-2015. PTC is the only theatre in the country given the honor of producing the musical." The regional premiere of The Last Ship takes place September 16-October 1 at the Simmons Pioneer Memorial Theatre in Salt Lake City, Utah.

ALL THE WAY Tony Award winning drama written by Robert Schenkkan.

Directed by Giovanna Sardelli.

The clock is ticking. The November election looms. “Accidental President” Lyndon B. Johnson’s window is closing to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and win the American people over to the side of momentous social change. But at what cost? Backroom deals and showdowns between the infamous and the influential take center stage in this absorbing drama. A mirror of our times, All the Way reflects the power of one person and one vote to transform our country.

Starring Steve Vinovich (President Lyndon Baines Johnson) - Jason Bowen (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.) - Stephen Bradbury (Sen. Richard Russell) - Donald Carrier (Sen. Hubert Humphey) - Timothy Crowe (Sen. Evert Dirksen) - Biko Eisen-Martin (Stokely Carmichael) - Jeffrey Grover (Stanley Levison) - Greg Jackson (Gov. George Wallace) - Eddie Ray Jackson (Bob Moses/David Dennis) - Rachel Leslie (Coretta Scott King) - William Parry (J. Edgar Hoover) - Tracee Patterson (Muriel Humphrey/Lurleen Wallace) - Chris Richards (Walter Jenkins) - Joshua David Robinson (Rev. Ralph Abernathy) - Laura Starnik (Lady Bird Johnson) - Lou Sumrall (Sec. Robert McNamara) - Charles E. Wallace (Roy Wilkins).

Michael Lincoln (Lighting Designer) - David Kay Mickelsen (Costum Designer) - Robert Mark Morgan (Scenic Designer) - Pamela Prather (Dialect Coach) - John Godbout (Stage Manager) - Tom Humes (Assistant Stage Manager) - Dan Scully (Projections Designer) - Jane Shaw (Sound Designer) - Wigs and Whiskers (Wig Design).

September 17 - October 9 on the Allan Theatre stage of the Cleveland Playhouse in Cleveland, Ohio.

A TASTE OF HONEY by Shelagh Delaney (1938 – 2011) was a British playwright and screenwriter. She is best known for this her debut work, which premiered at the Theatre Workshop in 1958, when Delaney was only nineteen, and later opened on the West End in 1959. Joan Plowright won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her performance as Jo in the original Broadway production, which also featured Angela Lansbury as her mother and ran for over 300 performances.

Tony-Nominee Austin Pendleton Directs the first New York revival in 35 years.

Delaney rocked the theater world when, at 18, she wrote a play that both defined and defied her generation. A Taste of Honey is the clever, passionate, and poignant story of a young woman facing an uncertain future in a hostile world - and learning to trust that love, in its every heartbreaking and messy form, will see her through.

The play, set in Delaney's native Salford, an industrial neighbor of Manchester, was inspired by a dislike for Terence Rattigan's genteel Variation on a Theme. Though Delaney was often grouped by critics with the “angry young men” like John Osborne and Alan Stillitoe who were challenging the traditional reserve and gentility of British high culture that Rattigan epitomized, she insisted that the comparison overlooked those writers' individual styles and that her writing was motivated not by anger but honesty. She wrote, she said, to record life as she saw it in urban Northern England, where “people are not usually shown as they are. For in actual fact they are very alive and cynical. I write as people talk.” Her screenplay for the 1961 film adaption of A Taste of Honey, which she co-wrote with director Tony Richardson, won the BAFTA Award for Best British Screenplay and the Writer's Guild of Great Britain Award in 1962. Delaney was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1985.

The cast features Rebekah Brockman as Jo, John Evans Reese as Geoff; Rachel Botchan as Helen, Bradford Cover as Peter, and Ade Otukoya as Jimmie.

The creative team includes Harry Feiner (sets), Barbara A. Bell (costumes), Eric Southern (lights), Jane Shaw (sound) and April Ann Kline (production stage manager).

Performances through October 16, 2016 at the Pearl Theatre in New York City.

MY SON THE WAITER: A JEWISH TRAGEDY written and performed by Brad Zimmerman.

My Son the Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy is the story of one man’s struggle to fulfill his dream and “make it” as a comedic actor in New York.

Zimmerman spent 29 years waiting tables in New York while continuing to pursue his dream of comedic acting. In My Son the Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy, he tells the story of his journey, along with a chronicle about his childhood, family, and misbegotten love life with warmth, wit, self-deprecating humor, and wicked charm – combining his years of training as an actor with his innate comedic talent.

In this 90-minute show, Zimmerman, who grew up in Oradell, N.J., also reviews the trials and tribulations of waiting on tables, particularly for someone not exactly invested in that career, and with little tolerance for finicky diners.

My Son the Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy spent 2 years at Off-Broadway’s Stage 72 at the Triad Theatre in New York. It is now running through October 2, 2016 at George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, NJ. The production then transfers to the Sabes Jewish Community Center in Minneapolis, MN for performances November 3-20, 2016.


WOODY ALLEN & THE EDDY DAVIS NEW ORLEANS JAZZ BAND perform every Monday from September 12 to December 12, 2016 at Cafe Carlyle in New York City.

VINCE GILL appears at the Great Frederick Fair in Frederick, MD. Next Sunday, September 18, he stars at the State Theatre Center in Easton, PA.

BEN FOLDS is on stage Tuesday, September 13, at Memorial Auditorium in Raleigh, NC. Thursday finds him at the Peace Center in Greenville, SC. On Friday his tour stars at the Ferguson Center in Newport News, VA. On Saturday he's in the spotlight at The National in Richmond, VA. Next Sunday, September 18, he can be enjoyed at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, NJ.

THREE DOG NIGHT appearing at the Clay Country Fair in Spencer, Iowa on Saturday, September 17.

KELLI O'HARA in a solo concert at Kutztown University in Kutztown, PA on September 15.

GAVIN DeGRAW appearing with Andy Grammer at The Concerts at Wente Vineyards in Livermore, CA on Monday, September 12. On Tuesday the show is at the Mountain Winery in Saratoga, CA. Thursday's stop is at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles. Friday's appearance is at the Kaaboo in Del Mar, CA. On Saturday the tour stops at the Outdoor Amphitheater in Lincoln, CA.

THE TEXAS TENORS entertain Saturday, September 17, at the Shipshewana Event Center in Shipshewana, IN.


HUGH O'BRIAN who rose to fame on television as the quick-drawing Wyatt Earp in the 1950s - and later devoted extensive time to a foundation he created that trains young people to be leaders - died on Monday, September 5, 2016 at his home in Beverly Hills, Calif. He was 91.

After World War II, O'Brian moved to Los Angeles to study at UCLA intending to eventually attend law school. Instead, he broke into show business by chance, when he escorted an actress to a rehearsal for a play and ended up with a part for himself, filling in for an actor who had fallen ill. The actress Ida Lupino, then just beginning her career as a director, saw the play and cast him in her 1949 feature film, Never Fear. A contract with Universal-International Pictures soon followed.

He gained worldwide fame when he landed the title role on The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp, which ran on ABC from 1955 to 1961 and was one of the most popular TV westerns when that genre dominated prime time. He played Broadway too: In 1960 he briefly filled in for Andy Griffith in the musical Destry Rides Again, and a year later he portrayed the author Romain Gary in First Love, directed by Alfred Lunt and based on Mr. Gary’s memoir, Promise at Dawn. He toured with regional theater productions as well.

While onstage, Elvis Presley introduced O'Brian from the audience at the singer's April 1, 1975, performance at the Las Vegas Hilton, as captured in the imported live CD release April Fool's Dinner.

. As O’Brian told it, his high profile on television brought him to the attention of the Nobel Prize-winning doctor and missionary Albert Schweitzer, who in 1958 invited O’Brian to observe and work with him at the hospital he ran in Lambaréné, Gabon (then French Equatorial Africa). Inspired by the visit and by Dr. Schweitzer’s call to service, O’Brian returned to Los Angeles and immediately established Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership, a nonprofit organization that presents seminars that prepare high school students to “become positive catalysts for change.” The program, which began locally, eventually grew to national and international proportions and now claims more than 300,000 alumni, including Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor, who said attending a leadership seminar in 1971 was “a genuine turning point in my life.”

Considered an international playboy in his younger days, O'Brian made gossip headlines thanks to his relationship with Princess Soraya (1932-2001), tearfully discarded as a queen by the Shah of Iran Mohammad Reza Pahlavi because she failed to deliver a child after seven years (1951-59) of marriage and refused to accept his taking a second wife for the purposes of producing a male heir to the Peacock Throne. After being cast out she reportedly spent a night with Frank Sinatra, had flings with German Millionaire Gunter Sachs, and actors Mel Ferrer and Richard Harris. Her romance with O'Brian was more than a fling. Later she had long term romances with Italian director, Franco Indovina, and actor Maximillian Schell, but always remained on good terms with O'Brian.

During one of his Las Vegas visits I interviewed O'Brian and asked him about Princess Soraya. His eyes lit up when he spoke highly of her.

In June 2006 O’Brian married his girlfriend of 18 years, teacher Virginia Barber, 54. It was the bride's second marriage.

The wedding took place in a cemetery - Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, Calif. He was 81 and in a statement quipped: "This is my first, and most definitely, my last trip down the aisle."

The Rev. Robert Schuller, pastor of the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, officiated, and the couple was serenaded by close friend Debbie Reynolds. Dubbed "A Wedding to Die For," the ceremony which was attended by 300 guests, concluded with a cocktail reception. The marriage lasted until his death.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his brother, Don Krampe, a co-founder of his foundation and an unsuccessful Republican candidate for Senate in this year’s California primary.

Next Column: September 18, 2016
Copyright: September 11, 2016 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.
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Laura Deni

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