Hilton signs Wayne, for now

Apr 26, 2005 1:01 AM

Ho hum. What I predicted two weeks ago has become reality. Wayne Newton is moving to the Las Vegas Hilton with a series of engagements starting June 14-18. And, as also stated, he will have Delisco, the winner of his The Entertainer television series, as part of his show.

Newton will perform a limited six-week run at the Hilton through August. What happens after these series of dates remains a question. My usually reliable sources tell me his future at the Hilton is all based "on show counts."

Newton headlined at the Hilton from 1987 through 1993. The Hilton release doesn’t mention his just completed five and half year Stardust run, which I attended. It was a very melancholy evening loaded with nostalgia but minus members of the Boyd Gaming family.

Newton keeps stating that the departure was friendly and amicable. With his voice gone and his show counts down, I’m sure it was. Boyd Gaming showed their thoughts about him by removing "The Wayne Newton Theatre" portion of the Stardust marquee the next morning, as well as all signage in the hotel.

The must-see performer in town is Clint Holmes at Harrah’s. The master showman has put together a new show that’s total perfection, not only in musical choice but in delivery and attitude. It’s flawless like that perfect diamond every woman dreams about. It’s pure gold as Holmes shares his life with the audience in song and story. Holmes not only sounds sensational, but there’s an unbelievable new passion and feeling in his stage presence. He draws you in with his tales as if it were just the two of you sitting in his living room having a drink. The lyrics of the new songs that he has written involve you, too. You’ve been there; you understand. If you see Clint, tell him Montila sent you!

Last week I also revealed that "Forbidden Vegas" was shuttering May 7 due to its bad location. Well, as of this writing, the show that deserves a place in town hasn’t found one and I’m not sure it will. It might be better as an afternoon alternative, but it needs financial support.

The grand old Dame of the Strip, the Riviera, celebrated its 50th anniversary last week. The hotel has survived numerous changes through the years. At one time it was the true diamond with a top-notch list of headliners and fine-dining establishments. Congratulations from Montila and I look forward to some major changes in the next few years.

Keep an eye out for the newly-created leopard-skin Monti Mobile. The car will be ready soon, and yours truly will be back cruising the wildlife in my wild wheels.

The first awards show to celebrate the best casino players, casino entertainers and casino-related television and movies has been announced by GSN, the cable network for games. The GSN Casino Awards will be broadcast live from here in December on GSN. Nominees and winners in most categories will be chosen by a casino board made up of professional players, entertainers, producers and executives.

With owner Steve Cutler claiming that "it’s not over, it’s not dead by a long shot," the Casino Legends Hall of Fame at the Tropicana has shuttered. "It’s going to survive and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever," says Cutler, who founded the museum as a way to recognize the builders of gaming and entertainment in Las Vegas. Cutler owns more than 10,000 pieces of memorabilia, acquired in a 30-year span. It was at the Tropicana for six and a half years.

A new local theatrical production company — Sullivan Freyd Sperling — will bring its initial offering of "A Chorus Line" to the Starbright Theatre in Summerlin the weekends of May 13 - 15, May 20 - 22 and May 27 - 29. Tickets are $17 and can be purchased by phone (877/725-8849) or online at www.ticketalternative.com.

On Stage: U2 sold out both its MGM Grand Garden Arena concerts in record time meaning you should check out e-bay for ducats”¦ Alicia Keys makes her MGM Grand Garden Arena debut with her "The Diary Tour" May 27-28”¦ Jazz at the Orleans featuring Chuck Mangione and Michael Franks has been added to the Orleans lineup July 1-3”¦ Former teen heartthrob Donny Osmond makes a rare local appearance, headlining the Orleans August 4-7”¦ It’s funky time at the Cannery when WAR and Evelyn "Champagne" King take center stage June 25”¦ Seal will be in concert May 20 at Whiskey Beach at Green Valley Ranch”¦ David Copperfield returns to MGM’s Hollywood Theatre May 19 - June 1”¦ As part of the Mirage’s Cinco de Mayo festivities, singer Jon Secada will perform May 6 in the Danny Gans Theatre”¦ Donna Summer is scheduled at the Hilton Sept. 3-4”¦ The Suncoast features RAIN: A Tribute to the Beatles.