Judy Thorburn | Editor in Chief | Writer | ColumnistJudy Thorburn's 'Vegas Happenings' column

By Judy Thorburn This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - Las Vegas Round The Clock

Owner/Editor in Chief/writer - The Flick Chicks
Director of Communications - Nevada Film Alliance

Las Vegas Music Legend Vincent Falcone Passes Away

I am saddened to report the passing of Las Vegas music legend, pianist, and former longtime musical director for Frank Sinatra, Vince Falcone. Surrounded by family and loved ones, he died peacefully at Torrance Memorial Medical Center in California on Friday night, March 24, after losing his battle with brain cancer. He was 78. In his extensive music career, Falcone also worked with such entertainment greats as Tony Bennett, Robert Goulet, Andy Williams, Jack Jones, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, and the list goes on. Most recently, Falcone was music director for Bob Anderson's Frank, The Man, The Music at the Palazzo Theater in Las Vegas, which closed in November, 2015. Beloved and respected by everyone in the music business, he will be missed. Our sincere condolences goes out to his family.

Sapphire Comedy Hour Celebrates 5 Year Anniversary

Sapphire Comedy Hour, located inside Sapphire, The World's Largest Gentlemen's Club, celebrated its 5 year anniversary on Saturday evening, March 18.  The evening included a special show where the audience were given a "trip down memory lane" and relived some of the greatest comedians of the past. Comedic celebrity impersonators took to the stage doing their best impressions and comedy routines of some of the late but great, comedy legends who made an indelible impact in the entertainment industry and audiences wordwide.  As if straight from heaven, the lineup included, Brad Zinn as George Burns, Johnny Carson and Groucho Marx, Bill Johnson as Bob Hope, Leigh Christianson as Phyllis Diller and David DeCosta as Old Blue Eyes/Chairman of the Board, Frank Sinatra.

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Brad Zinn as George Burns
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


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Bill Johnson as Bob Hope
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


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Leigh Christianson as Phyllis Diller
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


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David DeCosta as Frank Sinatra
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


Other featured acts were burlesque entertainer, Kolani Kokonuts, (Miss Exotic World 2009 and 5-time Playboy Centerfold), who brought the voluptuous, red headed, animated movie character, Jessica Rabbit, to life, and mind blowing magician Mon Dre, who wowed the audience with his amazing illusions.  In addition to celebrating its 5 year anniversary, the club also celebrated the honor of being chosen 2016''s Best Comedy Show by the Las Vegas The Review Journal. On hand were Sapphire Club manager and Comedy Hour producer/director Brett Feinstein, along with his coproducer/technical show consultant and one of the world's top sleight of hand magicians, Douglas (Lefty) Leferovich and comedian/comedy booker Philip Peredo, President of Tickle Me Entertainment.

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Kalani Kokonuts as Jessica Rabbit
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


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Magician Mon Dre
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


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Sapphire Club manager and Comedy Hour producer/director Brett Feinstein (C), coproducer/technical show consultant Douglas (Lefty) Leferovich (L), and comedian/comedy booker Philip Peredo, President of Tickle Me Entertainment (R)
Photo credit: Stephen Thorburn


The entertainment filled variety show, The Sapphire Comedy Hour, is staged every Friday and Saturday night at 8 pm. in the 300 seat theater and features touring headlining comedians with film and TV credits, along with world champion magicians, burlesque acts and other surprises.

Click on the below link to check out LVRTC reporter Dianne Davis' interview with the cast of Sapphire Comedy Hour's special 5th anniversary show.

Additional recent and upcoming “happenings” in and around Las Vegas include:

Las Vegas locals RODULFO D. and LINDA E. won big at SLS LAS VEGAS as the GRAND PRIZE WINNERS of the casino’s weekly drawing for a 2017 BMW 320i SERIES SEDAN. Rodulfo and Linda rode off in style in their new luxury vehicles, for which they received a three-year lease. Rodulfo was the lucky winner of the Saturday, March 4 drawing, while Linda nabbed the prize on Saturday, March 11. The BMW grand prize is part of an ongoing March gaming promotion at SLS Las Vegas. Every Saturday in the month of March, SLS Las Vegas will select a new lucky winner. Ten winners from each draw have a chance to win: one will receive a 3-series BMW, and the remaining nine winners will be gifted free slot play.

The U.S. Small Business Association has selected DR. EVA LITTMAN, the founder and practice director of Red Rock Fertility Center,  as its 2017 NEVADA STATE SMALL BUSINESS PERSON OF THE YEAR. In choosing Dr. Littman for this honor, the SBA considered her business innovation, her dedication to employees and plain hard work in building an outstanding business that strengthens the Nevada economy. Dr. Littman will be honored in Washington, D.C. during National Small Business Week, at ceremonies scheduled in late April and early May.

Las Vegas’ longest-running headliner Frank Marino, and his all-star cast of talented female impersonators who recreate some of music and entertainment’s biggest superstars, ranging from Lady Gaga to Cher, Diana Ross to Beyoncé, and even Madonna and Britney Spears, in DIVAS LAS VEGAS are introducing an all-new, spectacular show at The LINQ Theater at The LINQ Hotel & Casino.

The dazzling divas will now bring a brand-new production to stage with the addition of female impersonators taking on the roles of Pat Benatar, Barbra Streisand and Adele. As if more star power wasn’t enough, the show will also feature a new opening and new songs for the previously featured artists.

The show features 17 different performers a night all sporting new costumes to sparkle and shine on the stage. Audiences will also experience a new exotic number showcasing Shannel, from Ru Paul’s Drag Race, performing a number from the Broadway musical, “Jekyll & Hyde.” Meanwhile as the show’s emcee and star, Marino as comic icon Joan Rivers, brings an international whirlwind of couture to the stage with each spectacular entrance.  Showtimes for Divas Las Vegas  are Monday – Sunday at 9:30 p.m. Ticket prices range from $77.70 to $97.88 (plus tax and fees) and are available at The LINQ box office.

AIDS FOR AIDS OF NEVADA (AFAN) and HOUSE OF BLUES LAS VEGAS inside Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino will partner up to host a CHARITY ROCK CONCERT on Wednesday, March 29 at 7 p.m.  Witness the musical showdown between internationally renowned tribute bands, Abbey Road and Jumping Jack Flash, as they face off in "BEATLES VS, TONES – A MUSICAL CONCERT."  A portion of the proceeds will go to benefit Aid for AIDS of Nevada to support those living with or affected by HIV/AIDS. Doors open at 7 p.m. for the 18+ show and general admission tickets are available on the House of Blues website for $12 each plus tax and fees with VIP table seating options available.   The concert lands before AFAN's 27th annual AIDS Walk Las Vegas and will give walkers, sponsors, and supporters a chance to meet and mingle before the event on April 23 at Town Square. Registration will be available at the concert or online at afanlv.org.

Grammy-winning group OZOMATLI, whose success is exemplified in an impressive variety of genres, from classic to modern Latino, urban, hip-hop and other world styles, will perform at the House of Blues on Thursday, March 30. Showtime is 8:30 pm.

Actor DEAN CAMERON brings his hilarious creation of the popular email con, THE NIGERIAN SPAM SCAM SCAM, to The Space  (3460 Cavaretta Court) for a three-performance engagement on Friday, March 31 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, April 1 at 7 and 10 p.m.Tickets are $30 for general admission seating or $50 for VIP table seating. Rear porch seating is available for $55. VIP front table seating is also available for $65 per ticket.  Tickets for this special engagement are on sale now.

Country legend DWIGHT YOAKAM, revered for his honky tonk, Bakersfield-blues style that many say saved country in the 80s and the 90s,  will perform Saturday, April 1 at Star of the Desert Arena in Primm. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show begins at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $25.

Mexican metal parody band MODERATTO brings 15 years of total and absolute rock ‘n’ roll to the House of Blues Las Vegas on Monday, April 3 at 8 pm. Doors open 7 pm. Tickets start at $25, plus applicable fees.

CSN FINE ARTS THEATRE PROGRAM presents a staged reading of THE LAST FIVE YEARS, directed by Kris Pruett. The story explores a five-year relationship between Jamie Wellerstein, a rising novelist, and Cathy Hiatt, a struggling actress. The show uses a form of storytelling in which Cathy's story is told in reverse chronological order, and Jamie's is revealed in chronological order. Performances are April 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th at 7:00 pm with a matinee on April 9th at 2:00 pm in the Backstage Theatre at the North Las Vegas campus of the College of Southern Nevada.  General admission tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students and seniors.The CSN Performing Arts Center is located at 3200 E. Cheyenne Ave. in North Las Vegas.

BAZAAR MEAT BY JOSE ANDRES,, the acclaimed signature restaurant at  SLS Las Vegas, will host an EXCUSIVE SIX COURSE DINNER paired with the varietals of Andrew Will Winery at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 6. Bazaar Meat lead sommelier, Chloe Helfand, will describe the wines and explain why each was selected for the pairing. The Andrew Will wine dinner is priced at $165 per person, not including tax and gratuity. Reservations are available .

Due to overwhelming demand, including two sold-out shows at Palms Casino Resort on April 7 and April 8, A PERFECT CIRCLE announced a third date at The Pearl at Palms Casino Resort on Thursday, April 6 at 8 p.m.  Tickets for A Perfect Circle are $55, $75, $85 and $120 plus tax and applicable fees. Doors open at 7 p.m. and guests under 21 must be accompanied by an adult. Tickets can be purchased at the Pearl Concert Theater box office, any Station Casinos Rewards Center.

BADFISH - A TRIBUTE TO SUBLIME bring their Slowride Tour 2017 to House of Blues Las Vegas on April 7. Doors open at 8 p.m. Show starts at 9 p.m.
Tickets start at $24, plus applicable fees.

The GREAT VEGAS FETIVAL OF BEER returns with Nevada’s largest craft beer festival to date, for the first time expanding to two days on Friday, April 7 and Saturday, April 8, with more than 10,000 attendees expected throughout both days. Produced by Motley Brews and set to the backdrop of Downtown Las Vegas, the seventh annual Great Vegas will offer tastings of more than 500 craft beers from 110 breweries.

The new Mad Craft Experience will be held from 7-10 p.m. on Friday, April 7. The food and beer-inclusive event will host various experimentations with beer pairing top chefs and brewers, as well as rare pours and special guests. The Great Vegas Grand Tasting will be held from 3-7 p.m. on Saturday, April 8, with early entry at 2 p.m. Throughout both days, Great Vegas will offer beer-infused and inspired cuisine by some of Las Vegas’ top chefs, life-sized pub games and interactive entertainment.

Tickets for the Mad Craft Experience start at $70 plus fees.  Tickets start at $40 plus fees for Saturday’s Grand Tasting, providing access to the festival from 3 to 7 p.m. along with a tasting glass, unlimited beer samples and entertainment options including a silent disco, BrewLogic seminars and more. Early admission tickets are also available, providing entry at 2 p.m., priced at $50 plus fees.  VIP tickets to the Grand Tasting, Great Vegas’ most coveted credential, are priced at $85 plus a service fee, and include early entry at 2 p.m., access to the VIP Brewers Lounge, which includes a rotating tap of limited release and rare beers, a decadent spread of top-notch cuisine prepared by celebrated Las Vegas chefs, a lounge area and more. VIP tickets are limited. Tickets are available for purchase now at www.greatvegasbeer.com.
A portion of the proceeds from the event always benefit local non-profits.

Legendary band STEELY DAN hits Sin City with their “Reeling In The Chips” nine night residency at the Opaline Theatre at The Venetian Las Vegas.  Performances are set for APRIL 12, 14, 15, 19, 21, 22, 26, 28 & 29 at 8 p.m.  Each and every night, Steely Dan will entrance audiences with a set of their classic songs and diverse selections from their extraordinary catalog, rich with infectious tunes, bodacious harmonies, irresistible grooves, blazing solo work, rich ensembles and sleek, subversive lyrics. Tickets can be purchased at The Venetian Box Office and are subject to applicable service charges.  Event time and date are subject to change.

Grammy-winning indie folk artist JUSTIN VERNON AN HIS BAND BON IVER will headline The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas on Thursday, April 13. Tickets start at $40.50 .

On Saturday, April 15, prolific jazz guitarist PETER WHITE will transform The Foundry at SLS Las Vegas into an intimate jazz club where he will perform some of his most coveted contemporary jazz covers. The world-renowned musician will captivate the crowd as he strums numerous cover songs off his award-winning solo albums including “(Sitting On) The Dock of the Bay,” “I Can See Clearly Now” and “Never Knew Love Like This Before.” Tickets starting at $39.50, not including applicable service charges, are on sale now and front row VIP meet-and-greet options are also available for $89.50.  Doors open at 7 p.m. for this 21+ event

Tickets are now on sale for THE ANIMAL FOUNDATION'S 14TH ANNUAL “BEST IN SHOW” taking place at a brand new location, UNLV’s Thomas and Mack Center, on Sunday, April 23. Hosted by all-star entertainer Jeff Civillico, more than 50 playful pups from The Animal Foundation’s Lied Animal Shelter will vie for the top title and the hearts of the audience during this prestigious dog show. Only one pooch will be crowned “Best in Show,” but all of the cuddly canines are looking for their forever home and will be available for adoption following the event.  As The Animal Foundation’s largest fundraising event, this year’s ticket sales and contributions will proudly support the life-saving and life-changing programs offered by The Foundation, such as “Pets for Life,” “Keep Every Person and Pet Together” and low-cost clinics. Additionally, contributions will help The Animal Foundation move closer to its vital goal of saving every healthy and treatable animal in their care by the end of 2020 as part of Mission: Possible 2020, striving for a more humane and compassionate community for all animals. General admission tickets are $10, free for children five years and under, and group discounts are available. The event will begin at 11 a.m. with a VIP brunch and silent auction followed by the Concourse Vendor Fair at noon, and the 14th annual “Best in Show” will begin at 12:45 p.m. For more information and to purchase tickets or tables, please visit animalfoundation.com or call 702-955-5973.

As part of her 50+ city global spring & summer tour, Tony Award-winning singer/actress IDINA MENZEL will perform at the Pearl Concert Theater inside Palms Casino Resort on Saturday, September 2, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.  Tickets are priced at $64, $84, $94 and $149 plus tax and applicable fees and can be purchased at the Pearl Concert Theater box office or any Station Casinos Rewards Center.

MIGUEL BOSE, the most influential Spanish artist in the world, returns to the United States to present his Estaré Tour at the Pearl Concert Theater inside Palms Casino Resort on Friday, September 15, 2017 at 8 p.m. Tickets are now on sale starting at $69 plus tax and applicable fees. Doors open at 7 p.m. and guests under 21 must be accompanied by an adult. Tickets can be purchased at the Pearl Concert Theater box office or any Station Casinos Rewards Center.

Celebrity sightings:

Saturday night, March 25...

French Montana returned to Marquee Nightclub in The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas as part of his exclusive residency. Before his performance at the nightclub, the rapper fueled up with dinner at Beauty & Essex.

French Montana Performs at Marquee 3.25.17
French Montana Performs at Marquee 3.25.17
Photo credit: Al Powers

Over at TAO Nightclub in The Venetian, Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban was seen at a VIP table with friends.

Friday night, March 24...

YouTube sensation Tyler Oakley celebrated his recent birthday with friends at TAO restaurant in The Venetian.

Thursday, March 23...

GRAMMY Award-winning rapper and music producer Lil Jon was spotted taking in an epic installment of “The COOLest Party with DJ Esco” at Drai’s Nightclub atop The Cromwell in Las Vegas. Arizona Cardinals tight end Jermaine Gresham and Denver Broncos wide receiver Cody Latimer were also both seen enjoying the rooftop hotspot late into the night with friends.

Wednesday, March 22...

Comedian and actress, Amy Schumer, was a featured speaker at an event hosted by Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America at CRUSH inside MGM Grand Las Vegas. The groups met and shared stories of those affected by gun violence.

Sunday, March 19...

It was a family affair at Michael Jackson ONE by Cirque du Solei as pop music legend Celine Dion visited the critically acclaimed show on . Joined by her son, Rene-Charles, and 10 brothers and sisters, Dion enjoyed an unforgettable night out on The Strip to celebrate her mother’s birthday, kicking off the evening with a performance at ONE located at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. After the electrifying show, Dion—who was wearing a chartreuse, lace peplum dress and matching stilettos—joined the audience in giving the cast a standing ovation, waving to cast members Tammy To and Addie Yungmee who once performed with her on tour.


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