Tag Archives: New York

A Bronx Tale Spins in Las Vegas

Chazz Palminteri was sitting on the front stoop of his parents’ apartment block, minding his own business, when shots were fired during a fight over a nearby parking space. A man was murdered right in front of him, and young Palminteri’s life changed forever.

Palminteri used the shocking event as an inspiration and wrote a screenplay called A Bronx Tale about his growing up in world filled with crime, gambling and gangsters. In 1993, the play was made into a movie, directed by and starring Robert De Niro.

Now an Academy Award-nominated actor himself, Palminteri revisits his checkered past in his one-man version of A Bronx Tale at the Venetian Showroom in Las Vegas.

The production sees Palminteri retrace his steps and navigate the rough streets of ’60s-era New York, as he is forced to choose between the law-abiding life of his father and the lifestyle of a local mobster.

Palminteri premiered his production at the Venetian last year, and he brings it back for a second 11-night running now through May 9. 8 p.m., $45.75, dark April 30 and May 7.

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Wayne Brady returns to Las Vegas, follows Chazz Palminteri, Joan Rivers

Entertainer Wayne Brady, right, to many, may not have left Sin City.  But that he did.  Now, Brady of “Let’s Make a Deal” fame, which taped at the Tropicana, is returning to the Venetian in Las Vegas on Memorial Day weekend.  

Brady, produced by Zeiger’s Base Entertainment, is scheduled to perform 15 weeks scattered though the rest of this year, while presumably working around the new taping schedule of “Deal.” 

But before Brady arrives, Chazz Palminteri and Joan Rivers will keep his Venetian stage warmed up. 

Palminteri performs his autobiographical one-man play “A Bronx Tale” April 28-May 9 and Oct. 6-18.  It’s a Las Vegas exclusive engagement- the only booking this year for Palminteri. 

Joan Rivers will host Venetian dates in April, times to be later announced.

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Las Vegas New Year’s Eve Firework Displays to Return to Strip Rooftops

Las Vegas residents and vistors alike finally got some great news– they just may be able to actually see the New Year’s Eve half-million dollars of fireworks displays this year! NewYearsStrip

Las Vegas Events (LVE) and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) announced late last week that the New Year’s Eve celebration known as America’s Party: Las Vegas New Year 2010 will include a spectacular fireworks show fired from seven rooftop locations along the three-mile stretch of the Las Vegas Strip. 

Although fireworks displays had been launched from the top of Las Vegas Strip hotels since Dec. 31, 2000, the show was launched from resort parking lots and garages last year when new Clark County fire and safety rules tightened regarding rooftop fireworks following the Monte Carlo rooftop fire in January 2008. 

The lower launch point caused the fireworks display last year to not be viewable at many traditional Las Vegas vantage points. 

But, despite the lower aerial displays, last year’s New Year’s Eve still drew nearly 291,000 visitors to the area, include nearly 30,000 downtown, for an nongaming economic impact of $188 million to Las Vegas, according the Las Vegas Visitors Authority.

 The budget for this year’s Las Vegas show, which is funded by the state’s room tax, has reportedly increased by $50,000 to $550,000– not bad for a poor economic year with many residents out of a job. 

The Las Vegas firing locations (from the south, heading north) this year include the following resort properties: MGM Grand, Planet Hollywood, Aria, Caesars Palace, Treasure Island (TI), Venetian and the Stratosphere. 

Fireworks by Grucci of New York will again coordinate the pyrotechnic display. 

The group recently created the spectacular Grand Opening of the Atlantis Hotel and The Palm Jumeirah in Dubai and has executed numerous presidential inaugurations and citywide celebrations.

 Grucci will also do the fireworks for the $8.5 billion CityCenter grand opening planned for Dec. 16 in Las Vegas. 

Michael Green, a history professor at the College of Southern Nevada, said New Year’s Eve fireworks high above the Strip have become part of the fabric of Las Vegas, commenting, “Granting that Las Vegas is still in a lot of economic hurt, the signs are pointing the right way. So maybe the fireworks will give us something to look forward to and up to.”

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Liza Minnelli to Film Tony Award-Winning Special in Las Vegas on September 30

“Liza’s at the Palace” will be filmed in the Hollywood Theatre at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Wednesday, September 30 and Thursday, October 1, 2009. All of the material performed during her New York engagement will be included in the filming. The program will capture many of her greatest hits and also be an affectionate tribute to her godmother, the late Kay Thompson, who was a groundbreaking singer-dancer, songwriter, vocal arranger and musical director/vocal coach at MGM Studios. LizaMinnelli

As reported by BroadwayWorld.com and now confirmed by PBS, celebrating the one year anniversary of Liza Minnelli’s Tony Award-winning performance “Liza’s at the Palace,” American Public Television (ATP) will distribute the long-awaited special in December, 2009 and it will also be released on DVD in early 2010 by MPI Home Video. 

Minnelli’s unanimously acclaimed Broadway performances were sold out for five weeks in December last year and fans around the world have been eagerly anticipating news of this  broadcast. 

The television event will be directed by Matthew Diamond and executive produced by JoAnn Young, Craig Zadan and Neil Meron.  In addition to the Tony Award for Best Special Theatrical Event, Minnelli received a 2009 Drama Desk Award for her performances at the Palace. 

Now in her fifth decade as an internationally celebrated entertainer, she has won every major show business honor including an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy, and four Tony Awards, making her part of a select group of performers who have won the entertainment industry’s top four achievement awards. 

She will be joined in the Las Vegas filming by her Broadway co-star and musical director, the legendary pianist, singer and composer Billy Stritch. Her quartet of dynamic singer/dancers, Cortes Alexander, Jim Caruso, Johnny Rodgers and Tiger Martina will recreate their roles as the Williams Brothers, which included the young Andy Williams and his talented siblings. 

The show will again be directed by Ron Lewis, the award-winning choreographer and director. Musical conductor/drummer is Michael Berkowitz, a well-known conductor of pop orchestras all over the world. 

JoAnn Young has written and/or produced more than 50 television specials including documentaries and musical performances. 

Craig Zadan and Neil Meron are the executive producers.  Together their film and television projects have won six Academy Awards, five Golden Globes, 11 Primetime Emmy Awards, and two Peabody Awards. For television, their movies have amassed 69 Emmy nominations. 

Tickets are now available at any MGM Grand box office and all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations. Tickets also are available for purchase online at www.mgmgrand.com and www.ticketmaster.com.

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Las Vegas Nightclub Kingpin Plans New York City Nightclub

Steve Davidovici, an original partner in Pure Management Group (PMG) in Las Vegas, raised in New York, is telling friends he’s opening a new club in New York City.   SteveDavidovici

Davidovici has been flying und the radar since the IRS raided Pure nightclub at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas a year ago in February.  The probe is part of an investigation into PMG. 

Davidovici’s new club is called The Griffin, located near the Hotel Gansevoort.

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Justin Timberlake Loves Swigging Tequila 901

Justin Timberlake may want to take a page from the book of illustrious Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman when it comes to promoting liquor in Las Vegas.  While Goodman occasionally makes appearances with showgirls and gin, justintimberlakeTimberlake now likes to dance and sing his way through Las Vegas appearances with his new 901 tequila buddy.  He’s been spotted at XS at Encore, the Playboy Club at the Palms, and elsewhere swigging on the yummy brew. 

901 is the area code of Memphis where Timberlake grew up and according to Timberlake, “It’s also the time that the evening stops and the night officially begins.” 

901 tequila will be available in May, sold exclusively in Las Vegas, New York and Los Angeles.

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Bobby Flay’s Restaurants in Lawsuit: Employees Allege Wage Cheating

A new lawsuit accuses some of celebrity chef Bobby Flay’s restaurants of cheating workers.bobbyflay

The lawsuit, filed in Manhattan federal court by current and former employees, names as a defendant Bold Food LLC. The company owns or operates Bar American and Mesa Grill NYC in Manhattan.  Another restaurant is in Atlantic City.

Bobby Flay’s Bold Food LLC also owns the Mesa Grill in Las Vegas. 

The lawsuit claims Flay’s company violated the wage and hour laws by engaging in improper tip-pooling practices. It also says the company failed to pay proper overtime pay and failed to reimburse employees for some expenses.

It’s one of a string of similar lawsuits filed on behalf of employees of New York restaurants.  No management comment provided if more lawsuits in other locations will be forthcoming.

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