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Photos by Dianne R. Davis or Burt Davis

Faugno Performs at South Point January 24th
 
Rick Faugno, popular Broadway import who stars as Frankie Valli in “Jersey Boys”  at the Palazzo, will reprise his critically-acclaimed, one-man song and dance show and release his first CD, “Songs My Idols Sang (And Danced!),” on Sunday, January  24  at 3 p.m. in the 400-seat South Point Casino Showroom.

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Rick received strong reviews in Jersey Boys and has performed for sold out audiences at South Point.  The 80 minute show is backed by a seven piece band and includes such classics a  “Embraceable You,” “Fly Me To The Moon,” “Steppin’ Out With My Baby,” “Puttin’ On The Ritz,” “Cheek To Cheek,” “Our Love Is Here To Stay” – including the powerful tap number, “Mr. Bojangles” as a tribute to one of the great Sammy Davis, Jr.

When I visited with Rick recently he spoke enthusiastically about his CD.  He told me that his aim was to recreate the magic that he captures on stage with his musical director Keith Thompson and his band. “I’m thrilled about sharing some of my favorite music from the Great American songbook, as well as presenting it in a new light.” He said.

I loved Rick’s performance in Jersey Boys  (How could I not, I’m a Jersey Girl.)  and friends who saw his show previously at South Point gave it high marks. Go see Rick at South Point, and then go see one of the best shows in Vegas, Jersey Boys.  To learn more about Rick and his music, visit his website at  http://web.mac.com/rickfaugno.
CES Brings Tourists and Technology to Las Vegas

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Photo by Burt Davis
The crowds arrived for the 2010 Consumer Electronics show.

CES - The Consumer Electronics Show - a significant contributor to the Las Vegas economy brought exhibitors, visitors, and much needed dollars to Las Vegas during its run from January 7-10.  More than 2,500 technology companies introduced over 20,000 new products which will be available to consumers sometime during 2010.  Closing figures point to more than 110,000 attendees.

The most discussed color at the conference was green.  This is now an ecologically aware industry responding to growing concern and awareness on the part of the consumers.  I’m not technologically advanced so a great deal of CES was over my head.
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What I do know is that 3D is here now.  It’s long past the experimental phase and far beyond the flimsy paper glasses that we got in the movie theaters many years back.  You no longer have to go to the theater to see it.  TV manufacturers such as Sony and Panasonic are partnering with studios to provide this new generation of televisions which will provide you with incredible 3 D experiences in the comfort of your own  home.

This is not a technological journal, but I went, I saw, and I marveled at the advances we are making.  My grandchildren can watch DVD’s showing on the back of the car’s front seat headrests.  And you will be able to play them on the back of the headrest on your flights.
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Photo by Dianne R. Davis
At an Audiovox press conference we were told that, “The industry is alive and vibrant.”  The company’s spokespeople assured us that they have delivered on their promises and beyond.

This basic statement was often repeated as corporations unveiled their new products or significant upgrades on existing products.

I saw a palm-sized pocket radar device which received the 2010 Editor’s Choice Award from Popular Mechanics magazine. It sounded like a radar detector to me, but I was enlightened; it can be used by coaches or parents to clock baseball pitch speeds, by athletes to measure their performance, or by NASCAR fans to enhance their viewing experience.  

I marveled at TVs so thin they seemed to be only two sided.  I heard about Quadpixel technology and the difference it will make in viewers’ experiences.  I was told that we had bigger, we had sharper, and now we have better.  Technology today is not just evolutionary, it’s revolutionary.

Casio showed us innovations that will allow the average consumer to change photos into paintings.  Samsung talked about inspiring the world and creating the future.  They will be bringing 3D into our homes in a big, but slim way with televisions that measure the width of a pencil.  You have to see it to believe it.
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Photo by Dianne R. Davis
DreamWorks Animation head Jeffrey Katzenberg was at Samsung’s press conference to let reporter know that 3D is here to stay in theaters and homes and to emphasis  his company’s partnership with Samsung.

At Panasonic, I was reminded that last year they promised significant improvements in 3D and now most of the other companies have jumped on the bandwagon.  These advances will bring us into a new world of action, sports, news, and entertainment.

Sony Electronics president and COO Stan Glasgow introduced their concept of make.believe centered on the idea of turning dreams into realities.
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Photo by Dianne R. Davis
A delightful reality at that meeting was the appearance of singing sensation Taylor Swift whose career is being documented with Sony products.

I was pleasantly surprised to discover that Polaroid is back.  Even with digital cameras and home printers, there are still times when we want instant gratification. We want to take the photo and hold it in our hands on the spot, and Polaroid is again making it possible.

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Photo by Dianne R. Davis
Philanthropist Bobby Sager

Polaroid has partnered with the Hope Is A Game-Changer Project, an initiative founded by philanthropists Bobby Sager and Sting, that delivers indestructible soccer balls - and hope - to kids in some of the most difficult places around the world. The Polaroid booth featured a collection of images by Sager, who is also an avid photographer, and whose recent book The Power of The Invisible Sun features children from war-torn areas around the world who despite their circumstances share the undeniable undercurrent of resiliency and hope.

Keeping with the tradition of linking celebrities to products, Lady GaGa has been named a “Creative Director” for a line of Polaroid products. Her appearance at the Polaroid booth was a crowd pleaser. This is just one of the ways that the exhibitors lure attendees to their booths.

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Photo by Burt Davis
Ed Hardy fans were surely lured to this booth

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Photo by Burt Davis
This Marilyn Monroe look- alike brought many attendees in for a closer look.

“Possible” is a good word to use in conjunction with this year’s CES.  What we never imagined is now possible and what we imagined is or will most likely be possible.  And this might possibly have been one of the most exciting Consumer Electronic Shows yet.

2010 AVN Adult Entertainment Expo Sees 10% Jump in Attendance
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They came, they saw, and they got photos signed. 
Attendance at this year’s AVN, the Adult Entertainment Expo, January 7-10 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center was just over 22,000 according to a statement by show organizers. This represents a 10% increase over last year. “We are very pleased with strong attendance at this year’s Expo,” said show spokesman Sean Devlin. “It shows that the public recognize that AEE provides the most-popular adult stars, the best variety of exhibitors, and the most-outstanding overall experience for fans of adult entertainment.”

Although the trade-only show held concurrently with the Adult Entertainment Expo (AEE) was definitely smaller than last year, the vendors I spoke with were pleased with this year’s business.  One vendor told me that last year, people seemed angry.  This year they were much more upbeat and there was a higher volume of orders.

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Photo by Dianne R. Davis
Porn Star Gina Lynn signs a photo

Fans lined up each day to have photos signed by their favorite industry stand-outs.  And yes, some of these women have some features that really do stand out.  This was the chance for their admirers to be up close and a little personal as they told the stars whose names to put on the photos.

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Photo by Burt Davis
That’s me getting a squeeze from Evan Stone

I had just walked into the show when I spotted Evan Stone, one of the giants of the industry. I recognized him because this is my third year to attend the show.  (Hey, why am I justifying myself?)

According to Wikipedia, Stone has made more than 700 movies since 1997.  I’m guessing it’s much higher than that number.  He told me that some of the movies are shot in one day, others take two. He’s hot, he’s charming, and I had a lovely chat with him.  Evan is certainly not the youngest guy in this movie making business so I ventured to ask him how long he planned to continue working in this gendre of film.  “Til  I’m the oldest guy in porn” he told me with a grin.  Is it at all surprising that when I asked his age, he told me he was born in 1969.  yea, right  Evan also told me that he is starting his own network which should be operational in April of this year. This I believe.

Every organization or trade has its share of legal issues, and the Adult Video Industry has perhaps an even greater share.  As I wandered the aisles at the show, I met Gill Sperlein,  a member of the board of directors of the Free Speech Coalition.  He told me that piracy is a huge problem in the industry and that “overbearing government regulations” have hurt the industry as well.  Sperlein noted that “ the country as a whole is embracing the industry more and more, but it will take the government a little longer to catch up.”

Vendors also touted their wares on the convention floor.  While some say there’s nothing new under the sun, I can assure you that there’s a lot new under the covers.  Ladies, would you like your male partner to dress for success? avn_2010_Designer_Wear_for_down_There_1-7-2010_4-43-52_AM_3456x2592
Photo by Dianne R. Davis
I saw Designer Wear for Down There, little outfits that you can slip on his member to create a more appealing appearance for his appendage. The literature says, “it is our deepest hope that this product will add some spark and spontaneity into your marriage and create a new conversation piece.

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Photo by Burt Davis

Over at the Screaming O booth, I picked up a cute little item called a fun finger Vibe designed to “give boring sex the finger.”  It’s waterproof too.

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Photo by Dianne R. Davis

As the day continued, attendees were there trying to catch up with the stars who were on hand to sign their photos. There was a long line to meet and greet crowd favorite Belladonna.     
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Photo by Burt Davis
Alexander DeVoe

I met Alexander  DeVoe, award winning director and head of Alexander DeVoe Productions.  What to ask someone like him.  Okay, I thought, let’s take the intellectual approach.  “Mr. Devoe,” I said, “ I’m guessing you weren’t a little kid who dreamed of someday going into the porn industry.  How did you get here?

“I was pre-law,” he told me.  Along the way, he took a production class and that began the detour that brought him into the industry.  But, why porn, I asked.  

“I’ve always been an open person. Once I had the medium to capture what was in my head, it came together, “he told me.  I approach these assignments from the context of who I am.”  I had to ask him,  “What did your mother say about all this?”

“Mother was proud and told everyone, ‘my son makes movies that people enjoy.’”.  Evidencing DeVoe’s 18 nominations for the Adult Entertainment Awards, a lot of people enjoy what he produces.  And a lot of people enjoyed this year’s AVN too.
The 2011 AVN Adult Entertainment Expo will be held January 6-9 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center
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