Many months ago, I told Jerry Lewis of a performer in Las Vegas who had perfected the art of clowning. The gentleman was, and is, a featured performer in “Mystere” at Treasure Island.
“His name is Brian Dewhurstand he’s very old-school,” I said. “I think you would like him.”
“How long’s he been doing it?” Lewis asked.
“All of his life,” I said, “and he’s 84.”
“He knows what he’s doing,” Lewis said.
As usual, Dewhurst was splendidas clown/usher Brian Le Petit Tuesday night, performing the act he’s made famous for the past 18 years. He poured popcorn on nonplussed audience members. He pulled a man from his seat, locked him in a small box onstage and sidled up to his date with a bottle of Champagne. He attempted to take a photo of the entire audience, calling out, “Move closer!” and a little disco dance.
Lewis laughed and said, “I love him!”
After the show, the icons finally met, just two nights shy of Lewis’ 91st birthday.
Dewhurst, who recently co-starred in the fundraiser “One Night for One Drop” at New York-New York, told Lewis he’d seen him onstage with Dean Martin in about 1953 at the London Palladium. “I’ll never forget it: You walked off the stage and slapped every musician on your way off. So funny.” Lewis smiled and said, “I loved that room.”
They were given red clown noses, and posed for a few photos. “It was wonderful, seeing you work,” Lewis said. In this moment of mutual admiration, Dewhurst responded, “We all inspire each other.”
CLOSING THIS CASE
Occupational Safety and Health Administration spokeswoman Teri Williams said the agency will not investigate Criss Angel’s onstage blackout during “Mindfreak Live” at Luxor on Friday night.
The magician lost consciousness during a spinning, aerial straitjacket act and was swiftly taken from the theater to Spring Valley Hospital. He performed as scheduled Saturday, and said on Monday he suffered from exhaustion and dehydration.
MARS, OUT OF THIS WORLD
Bruno Mars performed his final show at Park Theater at Monte Carlo on Sunday before launching his U.S. tour. He hits T-Mobile Arena on July 15, and returns to his extended engagement at Park Theater on Sept. 2.
Mars and his ever-grooving Hooligans backing band rehearsed new numbers for the tour at the theater early Sunday. Those who saw it said the arena show is spectacular, his best large-venue production yet. Mars was on fire in Sunday’s sold-out show, too. The only time he told us to get up and dance, we were already there. The only adustment in the set list is a cover of “Jailhouse Rock.” He’s performed it in Vegas before (and he performed “Little Elvis” in “Honeymoon in Vegas”) and it’s just fantastic.
SANTA FE AT UNLV
Fans of all ages who want to see Santa Fe & The Fat City Horns perform have that opportunity 1 p.m. April 1 at UNLV’s Judy Bayley Theatre. The band has been a Vegas favorite since 1976. But Santa Fe has played late-night lounges and hotel-casino venues almost exclusively while in Las Vegas, haunts reserved for a 21-and-over crowd (Santa Fe plays at 10:30 p.m. Mondays at the Lounge at the Palms). In this UNLV gig, families and students – especially those studying musical arts – finally get a chance to catch one of the city’s greatest bands.
FIRING A STRIKE
Funny line from Lewis, as he arrived in valet at Treasure Island and noticed a half-dozen bellmen and valet attendants near the hotel entrance: “Guys! Break it up! This looks like a strike!”
WHO WAS WHERE
Marty Allen, dropping in on Terry Fator on Monday night during Fator’s eighth anniversary show at the Mirage. Allen turns 95 on March 23, celebrating that day at 7:30 p.m. with a performance and party at South Point Showroom … Chloe Crawford, at Tuesday’s early performance of “Mystere.” Crawford remains in her role as the billed co-star in “Mindfreak Live” even though she and Angel personally split months ago … Ex-NCAA and NBA hoops great Thurl Bailey at KXNT Channel 13, being interviewed about his path to the championship with the legendary 1983 N.C. State team led by the late Jim Valvano.
John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section, and Fridays in Neon. He also hosts “Kats! On The Radio” Wednesdays at 8 p.m. on KUNV 91.5-FM and appears Wednesdays at 11 a.m. with Dayna Roselli on KTNV Channel 13. Contact him at email@example.com. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.