Planet Hollywood gets its ‘Dance’ on

Jun 9, 2009 5:05 PM
The Full Monti by Monti Rock III |

It’s baa-ack! Michael Flatley’s "Lord of the Dance" returns to Las Vegas for a limited engagement at Planet Hollywood’s Steve Wyrick Theatre from June 25-Aug 16.

This is a classic tale of good vs. evil based on old Irish folklore with colorful costumes, dramatic music,and of course some of the greatest precision dancing you will ever see.

"Lord of the Dance" debuted way back in 1996. In 1997, Flatley’s production was performed at the Academy Awards. It had stints at Disney’s Epcot Center in Orlando in 1999 and 2000 and at Disneyland Paris in 2002-03.

The show marked its 10th anniversary in 2006 and today has two troupes – one that performs in the U.S., South America and Canada along with another playing in Europe and Asia.

Flatley first found fame starring in "Riverdance" and "Lord of the Dance" was his dream of putting together a show capable of playing arenas instead of traditional theaters. Please make this incredible show part of your plans.

Also at Planet Hollywood, the ‘Fab Four Live’ performs at 5:30 p.m. daily (dark Thursdays) at the V Theater. See a good show, then have the rest of the evening for dinner, casino, etc.

My crowning event in Las Vegas was the annual 70 Birthday Gala to celebrate the life and times of a celebrity who keeps re-inventing himself.


The guests, the music, the food all created a surreal event. My filmmaker Michael Piehl came in from New York to be a part of the gala and add the finishing touches on my docudrama: "The Legend Continues." Lance and Eva Posner are the greatest hosts ever. They opened their home to the celebration and as usual contributed so much to the evening’s festivities.

With the closing of "Mamma Mia" at Mandalay Bay the familiar sounds of ABBA will return with the arrival of "Abbacadabra’s" debut at the Las Vegas Hilton June 12-14. The show’s creator and founder, Gary Raffanelli, has been the spotlight for Las Vegas radio and television all week. Sounds like my friend Ira David Sternberg at the Hilton has come up with another winner.

The Colosseum at Caesars Palace celebrated the 100th performance of Bette Midler’s "The Showgirl Must Go On" on June 7. Caesars will keep the celebration going by offering special pricing for tickets through June 28.

In addition to the special ticket offers, Bette has some surprises in store for the audiences. Midler fans from all over rave about her voice and some of those moves that 20-year-olds would find hard to perform. She truly is The Showgirl.

It’s refreshing to hear some good news for a change like the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino planning to hire some 1,200 new employees before the end of this year. Whew! Seems they didn’t quite spend all of their money with the $750 million expansion. At least they have enough left to hire a staff to take care of the expansion. Well done Hard Rock.

The Ruby Slipper Collection and Inspiration of Oz Fine Art Exhibit recently took place at Planet Hollywood. The exhibit was free to visitors and was created as acknowledgment of the 70th Anniversary of "Wizard of Oz". Holly Madison was a featured guest.

Of course the "Wizard of Oz" is synonymous with Judy Garland whom I met in New York City when I was a hair stylist to the stars. To this day I have maintained a relationship with her daughters Liza Minnelli and Lorna Luft. I can’t possibly be that old, can I?

"Britain’s Got Talent" didn’t crown Susan Boyle as everyone expected, but she did take second place in the finals. Just as well because she had just experienced a breakdown of sorts, but then so did we all. Anyway, the producer Simon Cowell stepped to the plate and will manage Susan’s career for the time being.

Actually I can relate to Boyle because at one time the press hounded me and I didn’t know how to get away from the cameras. Those were the good old days.

Adam Lambert, the darling from this season’s "American Idol," finally admits he’s gay. No kidding! Gay or not, he’s a great talent with a great future. Rumor has it that he’s already been offered to appear with Queen as front man for their upcoming tour.

Jay Leno bid farewell to the Tonight Show after 17 years and opened the door for Conan O’Brien. Despite some pretty high profile guests, Conan’s debut was a little shaky. To me he’s always looked like Howdy Doody.

Last Monday I went to see "Zumanity" at New York New York with friends. The show is seen as "the sensual side of Cirque du Soleil." Zumanity has a new host, Edie, the "Mistress of Sensualilty." It’s a variety show with a European decadent flavor. It was a delightful evening and one of six "Cirque" productions currently in Las Vegas.

Following the show I ran into Julie Newmar at the gift shop. She was the original Catwoman of the "Batman" TV series and is still a striking, extraordinary woman.

"Human Nature," the Australian show and presented by Smokey Robinson did a special opening peformance at The Imperial Palace. This group of four very talented Australian gents plus a great band recreate the Motown sound as the Beatles. These guys are special, and should be around for a long time.

My friend Bobby Slayton who’s performing at the Trop, is a must-see show. This man is another one of those great comics who have fun with the audience and of course, the audience has a great time.

On a sad note, actor David Carradine was found dead in his hotel room in Bangkok. The 72-year-old actor was in Thailand to shoot a movie. Carradine was a uniquely talented actor, best known for his iconic starring role in the TV series "Kung Fu." The son of famed character actor John Carradine also appeared in more than 100 movies.

Finally, it should be within two weeks before the results of the Danny Gans autopsy are released.

Question? Comment? E-mail me at: Monti Rock III