Ken’s Korner April 2015
Riviera Goodbye Party – Thank you to Magician Murray Sawchuck and his wife Chloe Louise Crawford for the amazing goodbye Penthouse Party at the Riviera. They rented the ‘Casino Suite’ which was the same suite used in the movie Casino. Many stars had called this suite their home while performing in Las Vegas. This suite was also the private home of Pia Zadora while she was married to the owner of the Riviera – Pia was at the party too! This was a nostalgic way to say farewell to another Las Vegas landmark resort. Thank you again to Murray and Chloe for throwing this star studded event!
Murray the Mentor – While performing in Tennessee earlier this year, magician Murray Sawchuck met up-and-coming magician Ben Young. Ben made such a positive impact on Murray, with his outgoing personality and dedication to the art of magic, that Murray invited Ben to a weekend in Las Vegas. Ben attended the star studded party at the Riviera, as well as being the special guest star in Murray’s afternoon show at Planet Hollywood. They even went out to Nellis Air Force Base to entertain our troops in cooperation with the USO.
Murray is a world-class magician and is known worldwide for his innovative illusions. You have seen him on America’s Got Talent and Pawn Stars TV shows, just to name a couple. It warms my heart to know that one of our ‘Las Vegas headlining entertainers’ has the motivation to mentor a young entertainer and allow him to see the potential within his dreams. How cool is it, that after the weekend, Ben can now list on his resume that he performed on the famous Las Vegas Strip and entertained our troops on an Air Force Base? Ben did a great job in the show and I know it has motivated him to pursue his entertainment career. Great job Murray – you are a ‘world-classy’ guy!
Martin Nievera – The golden voice of the Philippines, Martin Nievera has a new home in Las Vegas. He performed in the Pavilion at the M Resort to a sold out crowd of 2,300 adoring fans. This is a much larger venue for him than his previous home at the Suncoast Resort. The audience went wild when Martin pulled his friend Lani Misalucha onstage from her seat and they sang a couple unrehearsed songs. I am so pleased to call him a friend and he told me he will be back at the M in December for a Christmas show.
Riviera Comedy Club – The Comedy Club at the Riviera Resort had a proper send off to honor the club and say goodbye as the resort closed. This was the most amazing comedy event in Las Vegas ever! Over 30 of the comedians who have played in the Comedy Club all performed onstage to say goodbye to this Las Vegas landmark resort. Hosted by KKLZ's funny lady Carla Rea, some of the headliners you will recognize were Kathleen Dunbar, Andrew 'Dice' Clay, Jimmy 'JJ' Walker, and the legendary George Wallace to name just a few.
Fool Us – I was in the audience for the filming of Penn & Teller’s hit TV show Fool Us. For the past few seasons, the show has been filmed in the UK, but this season they filmed all episodes in their showroom at the Rio. Fool Us allows three magicians to perform in front of Penn & Teller and see if they can be fooled - figure out the ‘magic’ behind the illusions. It is rare that these two professionals are stumped. Check out Fool Us on the CW Network.
Elvis Museum – Westgate Resort owner David Siegel was joined by Priscilla and Lisa Marie Presley to cut the ribbon for the grand opening of the new 30,000 sqft Elvis Museum. This marks 40 years that Elvis is now back in the building at the Westgate Resort (formerly LVH & Las Vegas Hilton & Internationale). This is the original hotel where Elvis performed over 650 shows - it was his Las Vegas home. The museum was interesting and educational. Trivia - did you know that Elvis was a twin and the other baby was stillborn?? I have reservations as to the long term potential of this museum. We have seen the failure of a previous Elvis Museum on Industrial Ave behind Circus Circus, and the Liberace Museum on Tropicana; as well as Wayne Newton-land on Sunset Ave failing to open. These single-star museums all honor ‘has been’ stars who have a declining elderly fan base to frequent this type of attraction.
Wes Winters’ Anniversary – Wes Winters celebrated his 4th year of entertaining in Southpoint’s Grandview Lounge every Friday and Saturday evening. Wes is one of the only lounge acts left in town. These lounge acts help to build this town into the Entertainment Capitol of the World, but as the large corporations took over the resorts, most cut the lounge acts to save money. Thank you to Southpoint’s owner Michael Gaughan for keeping part of ‘Vintage Las Vegas’ alive.
Itsy Bitsy – The media was invited to an evening of wonderful food and cocktails to celebrate the opening of a new restaurant in the Downtown Fremont Street corridor. Itsy Bitsy opened in the Ogden Building at the corner of Las Vegas Blvd and Ogden Streets. The restaurant is billed as Japanese Fusion and the food is amazing. We were treated to vegetable pot stickers, pork pot stickers, mushroom egg rolls, beef skewers, chicken skewers, and grilled Japanese corn on the cob with miso butter. To wash it down I had (two or three) of their refreshing cucumber sake mojito cocktails. You need to check this place out for lunch, dinner or happy hour!
Puppetry of the Penis – The International hit show Puppetry of the Penis opened at Harry Mohney's Erotic Heritage Museum. This show is two butt naked guys on stage twisting their wee wee's into shapes that look like animals and food - like hot dogs, hamburgers, snails and pelicans. You could call it comedy soft porn! Two phrases that sum up this show are OMG and OUCH! They have played in 35 countries around the world and the show has been translated into multiple languages. After party with cocktails was next door at Deja Vu topless strip club - so penises and titties all in the same night! So is the life of a Las Vegas Entertainment Writer!
This show has been trying to come to Las Vegas for several years, but due to its full male nudity, they are not legally allowed to perform in a casino with gaming and alcohol laws. The erotic heritage museum is a perfect venue for this show. Attention all bachelorette parties coming to Las Vegas, put this on your must see list of sin and fun! This picture is their famous ‘hamburger’ pose.