Thinking on the past, present and future here in Vegas
December 27, 2016 3:00 AM
by Monti Rock III
Updated Jan. 2, 2017
This has been a trying year for me and the entertainment world, but let’s look ahead to 2017 before we look back. That’s always the best path to travel, especially here at GamingToday.
On my wish list foremost is not wanting to pay for parking. Even disabled veterans have to pay. Didn’t they pay enough for our country? And what about the valet parkers? This is their bread and butter.
When paying $20 to park you no longer give a $10 bill to the valet – $5 to the parker, $5 to the one who brings back your vehicle. We are talking about people’s earnings – this new practice of pay to park is unacceptable.
Coming in 2017 I believe will be a lot more Cirque, Ricky Martin (Menudo was his origin), Mariah getting engaged again to a younger man, and maybe she will have a more interesting relationship.
Britney Spears still is breaking records at Planet Hollywood, and Jennifer Lopez (another Bronx babe) will continue to break hearts and sing to sold out audiences.
I hope 2017 brings something different, innovative, entertaining, and not formulaic, and is fun! Fun – bring back some fun to our stages! We need to laugh and enjoy what we are paying for.
Later in 2017 we will have a hockey team that will play in a major sports arena, T-Mobile. The arena makes any team and performer look great. The easy access to and from the entrances is quite remarkable. The acoustics, lighting and general management of this venue is superb!
As we approach the New Year, we have Kathy Griffin and my favorite, Anderson Cooper, handling the countdown at Times Square in NYC. Ryan Seacrest will surface to do the old Dick Clark Rocking New Year’s Eve.
• Criss Angel – my favorite number one magician, reopened with Mindfreak Two at Luxor. That is a show not to be missed.
• Tony Orlando did a sensational show at the South Point and gave me a wonderful dinner in appreciation of our lifelong friendship. We are part of the Four Horsemen of Puerto Rico!! The late Freddie Prinze, the interesting Geraldo Rivera, myself and Tony! The boys from the Bronx dating back over 40 years.
• My favorite new production is The Bronx Wanderers at Bally’s. It is one family and a great act! Also, we still have Frank Marino at The Linq doing his own show, Divas! He has been a continuous performer on the Strip for over 25 years!!! We are still counting – way to go – Mr. Marino!
• My favorite show is the new version of Penn and Teller at The Rio – they are continuously reinventing themselves and moving with the times.
• And, the show that keeps on going – way past their original contract, is the timeless Donny and Marie at the Flamingo. Also don’t miss Human Nature at the Venetian.
It makes me sad recalling the closing of shows in town, showstoppers like, Cirque du Soleil’s ELVIS!, Rock of Ages, Million Dollar Quartet, Lance Burton, Gordie Brown and Matt Goss.
Some were forced to depart through scandal, the biggest being Jan Rouven who is awaiting trial on charges of being a pornographic pedophile.
Celine Dion lost her husband after a long battle of throat cancer and I marveled how brave, strong, and almost royal she was as a widow. I had to deal with the loss of my partner of 42 years, Bruce Moshman, but found great support in my network of friends.
The entertainment world saw the passing of Leonard Cohen, who opened our eyes to poetry in music. I even sang Cohen’s signature song “Suzanne” 10 times on the “Tonight Show.” James Taylor also sang the words of Cohen and made many a young woman cry.
Zsa Zsa Gabor lived to 99. Her great lines included, “I’m a great housekeeper, when I divorce them, I keep the house!” She was married nine times and the great love of her life was George Sanders. She also had a long estrangement with her sister Ava, who had a long relationship with Merv Griffin.
And just this past weekend such a tragic loss seeing George Michael pass. A true genius.
The great model China Machado passed away on December 19. She always called me when she needed the greatest hair stylist in NYC for a shoot – even when I was already in show business. I never turned her down, she was a friend, a truly fabulous woman!
We said so long to Jersey Boys, which had a great run and is dearly missed. When you think of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, you have to remember that the same producer and writers, composer, arrangers, did the same work for your columnist in 1973 as Disco Tex and The Sex-o-lettes.
In 2016 I became a fan of Alec Baldwin. His impression of Trump is spot on! Kathy McKinnon did a fabulous Hillary and just won an Emmy for her special comedic talents on the everlasting “Saturday Night Live,” which had its highest Nielson ratings ever recorded.
And what would a year be without mentioning the Kardashians. OK, that’s enough of them.
My wish for the New Year is for all of you to have good health, happiness, friendship, enjoyment and love in your lives!