Let’s hear it for Vegas’ fabulous femmes!

Jun 18, 2002 12:00 AM

Among the city’s top female entertainers, Rita Rudner will be producing her own late-night show at the Cabaret Theater at New York-New York.

Also, The Venetian has some remarkable femme fatales featuring Chaka Khan in Signed, Sealed and Delivered and Melinda, The First Lady of Magic dazzling the earlier crowd.

La Femme at the MGM Grand is loaded with European imports. This show is”¦well, you know, Ooh, La! La! And of course another favorite production is Showgirls at the Rio with the fantastic Sunny. And don’t forget the fabulous Gladys Knight at the Flamingo, the sensational Marlene Ricci at the Riviera and the beautiful Diahann Carroll at the Suncoast. The lovely Crystal Gayle will open at Sam’s Town on July 13 and another rhinestone diva, Dolly Parton, is scheduled to appear at Mandalay Bay’s House of Blues. Is Dolly taking a new path? This is like a celebration of women!

Cirque du Soleil and MGM Mirage are partners for two new projects to be based here in Las Vegas. Looks like the partnership will be exploring new ventures worldwide, too. We all know the success Cirque du Soleil has had with Mystere at Treasure Island and their production of O at Bellagio. With Lord of the Dance closing on July 28 at New York-New York after a successful four year run, the theater is scheduled to be torn down and will be rebuilt as a state of the art theater to house another Cirque du Soleil production.

At last week’s press conference was my favorite hotel president, Felix Rappaport of New York-New York. Besides being a class act, the man keeps coming up with winners at Vegas’ Big Apple.

One of the Cirque shows is scheduled to open 2003 at New York-New York and a second will debut at MGM Grand 2004. It’s only a rumor, but EFX might be the next to go. Only a rumor. I for one am sorry to see Lord of the Dance close, it’s been one of my favorite shows, but we have to feel the excitement surrounding New York-New York with Rita Rudner continuing her madness of comedy, all the New York restaurants, the MGM refurbishing their rooms, the Bellagio as a centerpiece with O doing incredible business.

A new show at the Greek Isles, Frank, Sammy, Joey & Dean (could this be the Rat Pack?) has just opened and I went to Stephen Severino’s show, Voices in my Head at the Riviera. Got to give it to the guy. He sang, he played the sax, he did Sonny & Cher, George Burns, Elton John. Don’t forget the opening on June 20 of the Hawaiian Plantation House.

Thunder From Down Under is moving to the Excalibur and has found a new home at Merlin’s Theater. The boys of Thunder just recently received the Best Dancers award.

Leslie Anders, star of the Peggy Lee show, Fever, will soon become an ordained minister. Now that’s commitment, baby.

We were sad to hear of the recent passing of a friend, Bill Blass, who was such a gentlemen and his design creations will remain as a tribute to this man for years to come.

Las Vegas is in a class of its own when it comes to supporting charities. We all proudly and generously contribute in many ways. One of the years’ biggest is the 16th Annual Ribbon of Life. This is a spectacular event scheduled for June 22 and 23 at Mandalay Bay. More than 300 of our brilliant stars will be performing including my wonderful friends Bob Anderson and Clint Holmes. The show will open with Jimmy Hopper singing the National Anthem and performers from EFX, Storm, Bravo, Siegfried & Roy, Jubilee and others will add their talents. Tickets range from $25 to $175. This is the largest fundraising event of the year for Golden Rainbow which is a non-profit organization providing help for those living with HIV/AIDS. Las Vegas is good in many ways and supporting charities is part of the scene here. Keep up the good work.

Hot news from the Flamingo! The Baywatch crowd is planning a presence at the tropical-themed resort. Just what we need, more babes to watch! Stay tuned for more details.