Ann-Margret to appear at MGM

Mar 25, 2003 3:26 AM

I’m back from a whirlwind visit to one of the strangest and weirdest places on Earth, Hollywood. I tried everything to get a ticket to the Oscars, but after numerous promises, nobody came through. I went to plenty of pre-Oscar parties, lunches and dinners, and, you know what, I didn’t have to use my credit card once! This is really great since my bank account has been on life support since Saturday Night Fever.

Hollyweird was a buzz over Celine. There were all sorts of predictions and rumors about Celine’s stint at Caesars Palace. Nobody was willing to place a bet on what would happen.

Celine eliminated one circulating rumor during her dress rehearsals ”” she’s singing throughout the show with some wonderful and surprising material. I’ve heard mixed reviews of her show based on the previews, but I’m still predicting a smash for her 40-week schedule for the next three years that officially begins today ”” and I’ll be there, too.

A special friend and beautiful diva, Ann-Margret, who celebrates her 62nd birthday on April 28 ”” an early happy birthday, darling ”” brings her majestic presence to the stage this Thursday at the Hollywood Theatre in the MGM Grand. The show I witnessed years ago featured Ann-Margret on a motorcycle with her sensational male dancers and classic video. Ann-Margret has captivated audiences for years; her last Las Vegas appearance was last year in "Best Little Whorehouse."

Speaking about divas, the multi-talented Pattie Lupone graces the UNLV Performing Arts Center on March 30. Lupone was scheduled to be the original star of "Sunset Boulevard" on Broadway based on her London success in the play. Glenn Close abruptly replaced her as Norma Desmond, much to the chagrin of her fans.

The Review-Journal’s annual Best of Las Vegas voted yours truly — the second year in a row ”” The Most Colorful Character of Las Vegas. Wow, the mayor and me in the same category! I almost demanded a recount!

Dennis Blair and I had the honor to present the best comedian award to the ravishing, talented and endearing Rita Rudner.

"Mamma Mia" at Mandalay Bay continues to do great numbers and the SRO sign holds forth at Siegfried & Roy at The Mirage. Check out the shows downtown: the "Dummy" show at the Golden Nugget, and "Spirit of the Dance," also at the Nugget.

Are you ready for the next wave of Cirque du Soleil shows? New York-New York and the MGM Grand are revamping their showrooms for a pair of the Canadian-produced productions. Expect more brilliance in the genre of Mystere and O. And, there’s word Steve Wynn will bring one to Le Reve in 2005.

A final Hollywood tidbit. I enjoyed a fabulous, intimate dinner party hosted by the lovely Lorna Luft, who will be in Las Vegas in May when she opens for Don Rickles at the Stardust.

Throughout the evening, the laughs never stopped (I kept checking my fly). I overheard that Liza was back in rehab, though it didn’t come from Lorna. We all miss Liza and can’t wait until she comes back to Las Vegas, a town she helped build.

Next week I’ll be reporting on what might be the event of the century in Las Vegas (not counting the debut of Nudes on Ice). Celine, my darling, make it great!