Bally’s kicks off
‘Strip Search’ competition

Jul 27, 2004 3:04 AM

Perhaps, somewhere in Las Vegas, the next great lounge singer is waiting to emerge. Bally’s could be their starting point.

Bally’s "Strip Search" competition, co-sponsored by Miller beer, begins the weekend of Aug. 6-7 and continues each Friday and Saturday from 10 p.m. until 12:15 a.m. through the finals on Oct. 1. The three contestants with the highest scores each week will have a sing-off in order to advance.

"We’re really excited about the project," said John Avello, whose persona continues to evolve from his main job as director of operations for Race and Sports at Bally’s/Paris Las Vegas.

"It’s going to be a karaoke format with three judges each week judging the contestants on the basis of singing, style, appearance and stage presence," said Avello, who recently opened Johnny’s — a deli-style restaurant across from Bally’s book. "The winner will have the chance to sing a full set in our Indigo Lounge with a live band."

Valet parking will be available near the sports book, where the contest will be shown on the large television screens.

"We’re expecting a big turnout and I think it will be a lot of fun for everyone," Avello said. "There will be three judges, who will vary from week to week. They will be chosen from writers, hotel staff, talent agents and celebrities around town."

The ultimate winner will also win a cash prize and receive a year’s supply of Miller beer. Contestants must be at least 21 years of age.