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Las Vegas Spotlight: March 2007

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John O'Hurley
Steve Wynn cordially invites you to "Find Your Grail" at the Wynn Hotel & Casino when the Las Vegas production of Monty Python's Spamalot begins performances on March 8. The show, which won Broadway's coveted Tony Award for Best Musical, features television favorite John O'Hurley (Seinfeld, Dancing with the Stars) as King Arthur.

It's not just Broadway that's been invading Vegas of late. On March 24, Stomp Out Loud, a new version of the Off-Broadway smash Stomp starts performances at the Planet Hollywood Hotel & Casino. The show's creators, Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas, have reinvented their percussive movement-based entertainment, much in the same way that Phantom of the Opera was re-worked for its Las Vegas run. So Vegas audiences will be getting twice the bang for their bucks in this show, which has a cast double the size of the original, plus some brand new sequences and choreography.

There will be a rare opportunity to see the acclaimed Jerry Springer: The Opera, when a concert version of the show is presented at the MGM Mirage on March 17 and 18. This operatic parody of the infamous talk show, was a major success at the National Theatre in London, but has yet to receive a full production in the U.S. These concert performances, which feature a cast of over 30 local performers, will benefit Golden Rainbow, an organization that provides assistance to people living with HIV/AIDS.

The Performing Arts Center at the Community College of Southern Nevada will serve up Eugene O'Neill's The Emperor Jones (March 2-11), the playwright's 1920 drama about a man who escapes prison and declares himself ruler of a Caribbean island. Not only did the play help to establish O'Neill as a significant playwright, but it also launched Paul Robeson's career when he played the title role of Brutus Jones in a 1924 production (as well as in a 1933 film version).

Mid-month, the Las Vegas Little Theatre will present Richard Greenberg's The Violet Hour (March 15-25) in its Fischer Black Box. The prolific playwright -- best known for works including Take Me Out and Three Days of Rain -- mixes history and fantasy in this play about a novice book publisher who, while trying to decide whether to publish a work by his mistress Jesse (a performer much like Josephine Baker) or his best friend Denis (strikingly similar to F. Scott Fitzgerald), must contend with the arrival of a strange machine that prints pages describing their futures.

Two last chance alerts: LVLT's current mainstage production of Milan Stitt's The Runner Stumbles hits the finish line on March 4; and UNLV's production of Bertolt Brecht's Mother Courage and Her Children finally flees the Black Box Theatre on March 11.

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