Let’s take a rake to the scene, eh?
• In the face of reports from Britain, first by the Daily Mirror, that a woman who partied with Prince Harry at Wynn Las Vegas is planning to sell her story (and accompanying video and photos) for $1 million, Wynn officials say there are no plans to advertise or market the infamous abode of revelry as the Prince Harry Suite.
Hey, maybe Abode of Revelry would be a suitable name, too.
Regardless, at various times, Vegas hotels have identified rooms where famous individuals have resided, most notably the Beatles Suite at the Sahara, where the band stayed during their two shows at the Las Vegas Convention Center on Aug. 20, 1964. When the film “The Hangover” was released, those taking reservations at Caesars Palace were asked to list rates for the Hangover Suite. Guests were disappointed that no such suite existed, that the suite in the film was merely a set inspired by the design effects in several Caesars suites.
Similarly, there was never a Rain Man Suite — the room in which Tom Cruise learned that his autistic brother Raymond (definitely Dustin Hoffman) could count cards — offered by the hotel. That was the Emperor Suite, officially, and never dubbed anything other than that.
The folks at Wynn seem to want the story to ebb, but it is unlikely if reports are true that an unnamed woman is close to signing a lucrative deal that would put her on network television, possibly telling her story of a party that reportedly took place hours after the photos of the billiards party were taken (this is where a few women were randomly plucked from Wet Republic at MGM Grand and invited to the prince’s cabana). But there can be no ebbing of this saga with information of Harry’s trip to Vegas trip trickling out every day. His next public appearance is to be Friday at the Paralympic Games in London
The Las Vegas Visitors and Convention Authority has already responded to the first set of photos of naked Prince Harry, placing an advertisement in national publications telling the 27-year-old prince to “Keep Calm and Carry On.”
A suggestion for the next ad: “It’s All Fun and Games Until …”
• Speaking of acting nakedly in front of the camera …
Filming for “Behind The Candelabra,” the HBO biopic (that’s showbiz lingo for “biographical movie”) centered on the relationship between Liberace and his boyfriend/chauffeur/litigant Scott Thorson. The production crew arrived in Las Vegas last week, and on Friday, a reportedly torrid love scene between Liberace (played by Michael Douglas) and Thorson (portrayed by Matt Damon) was filmed in the LVH Sky Villas. The set was closed for the scene, and the master bedroom was redecorated to resemble Liberace's sleeping quarters (new camera-friendly sheets were found after a daylong search at the hotel). Also on Saturday, LVH Theater was closed to stage live-performance scenes featuring Douglas behind the piano (Liberace headlined for years at the theater when the hotel was known as the Las Vegas Hilton). Producers have also been seeking an ornately designed gate to film as the entrance to Liberace’s Palm Springs estate, inquiring about the gates at Casa de Shenandoah and the Las Vegas home of Siegfried & Roy. They might try the chain-link fence surrounding Fontainebleau, too ... or not.
And a big pickup — for real — for Dan and Judy Del Rossi of Tiffany Couture Cleaners. Their business, an anchor of Commercial Center since 1970, has been enlisted to handle the dry-cleaning need for the wardrobe items used in the film. This means that, on Saturday, my clothes might well have been hanging in line with replica Liberace costumes. Not sure what it means, but if I seem a little more histrionic this week, you'll know why.
• What was great about the Vegas Rocks! Magazine Awards show at the Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel on Sunday night? The rocking-ness of it all. Rock gods Sammy Hagar, David Coverdale, Vinnie Paul, Michael Schenker and Geoff Tate turned up to accept lifetime achievement awards. The show-closing jam featured a tribute to Montrose (Hagar’s first band) as Red Rocker was joined by Paul, Schenker, ex-Bullet Boys and current Guns N’ Roses guitarist D.J. Ashba and ex-Van Halen bassist (and current Chickenfoot bassist) Michael Anthony.
Coverdale — who seems entirely unchanged physically or vocally from the “Here I Go Again” video of the late-1980s — blasted out a few bars from Whitesnake’s “Still of the Night.” He also referred to Prince Harry as “Dirty Harry,” and when the front man for Whitesnake (and before that, Deep Purple) calls you “dirty” anything, you’ve achieved something, my friend.
During the program, the rapt (or maybe stunned) audience watched a wedding ceremony presided over by Kiss By Monster Mini Golf co-owners Christina and Patrick Vitagliano and business spokesmodel Brian Thomas. You might know Thomas as the man who portrayed Lucky the Leprechaun for years at O’Sheas. He’s now Kiss By Monster Mini Golf's costumed (as Gene Simmons) Kiss character and assigned “mini-ster,” who has filled out a form online to serve as an ordained wedding officiant. The couple onstage were Ed and Bri Dergance of Las Vegas, and the bride wore the same $10,000 black-leather gown worn by Lady Demon Christine Mulleneaux at the opening of the Kiss-themed attraction in March.
A bunch of emerging Vegas rock bands were honored during the course of the three-hour show, but some local musicians are grousing that Vegas Rocks! Magazine requires a $100 fee to be among the nominees. Not every band pays that fee (some because they can’t afford it, others because they stand on principle by not participating in any awards show that hints of pay-for-play). Invariably, the process risks excluding many top bands in Las Vegas.
Vegas Rocks! Magazine founder and publisher (and editor, CEO and general overlord) Sally Steele counters that any entertainment awards competition requires some variety of entry fee. The LVRM Awards fee averages out to about $20 per band member, which she says does not even cover the cost of one trophy given to each winner. This is the third year Steele’s publication has staged the awards and the first at the Joint (the first two events were held at the Las Vegas Hilton). Sunday’s show was broadcast live on AXS.tv, the online network where Dan Rather landed.
A funny disconnect emerged between the language used by rock stars and the feeling that, because this was on TV (sort of), profanity needed to be curbed. During the video leading to the show’s opening, the inescapable F-bombs uttered by many of the night’s presenters and recipients were bleeped out. But from the stage, there were at least 25 bombs dropped — yes I counted.
But that’s rock ’n’ roll, right?