Topping last year’s "Power of Love" gala featuring Muhammad Ali’s 70th birthday would be a daunting task for anyone.
Not for Southern Wines’ Larry Ruvo. Not with his long history of making big things happen.
How’s this for an encore?
A benefit gala built around the 80th birthdays of entertainment icons Quincy Jones and Michael Caine on April 13 at the MGM Grand Garden.
Jones and Caine have been close friends since working together on "The Italian Job." Caine starred in the 1969 film, and Jones produced the soundtrack.
"They were born on the same day (March 14, 1933), same hour, same minute," Ruvo said.
"Quincy says they are celestial twins," he added.
Caine is a two-time Academy Award winner, and Jones has won 27 Grammys.
As he did with the star-studded Ali tribute, Ruvo is working on a television component for this one. Last year’s event was turned into a two-hour ABC special and a same-night rebroadcast on ESPN2.
The long-running fundraiser supports the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, which Larry Ruvo named after his father. Last year’s event provided $1 million for the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Ky., his hometown.
The evening’s celebrity chefs will be Wolfgang Puck and Gordon Ramsay.
THE SCENE AND HEARD
Dot Jones, who plays football coach Shannon Beiste in "Glee," had a Vegas moment on the red carpet Friday before attending Cirque du Soleil’s new show "Zarkana" at Aria (CityCenter). Even stars get starstruck. She turned to a public relations wrangler and said, "I can’t believe I just met Siegfried & Roy!" Jones was a record-setting shot putter in college and competitive arm wrestler.
Ben Vereen, giving a shout-out to Pia Zadora during his Saturday performance at The Smith Center. He humorously recalled how they performed together years ago during a rough seas voyage of the Queen Elizabeth II ocean liner.
It was a nightmarish experience on the high seas, said Zadora, who was about to take the stage Sunday at the Joe Williams Scholarship Fund Concert at UNLV’s Ham Hall when I reached her.
They were performing with "The Mike Douglas Show" and "everybody was sick and barfing. Even Ben turned green," Zadora recalled.
They also appeared together on the TV show "Shelley Duvall’s Mother Goose Rock ‘n’ Rhyme."
Vereen played the Itsy Bitsy Spider and Zadora was cast as Little Miss Muffet.
Zadora talked Vereen into joining her at Ham Hall on Sunday. He did a couple of numbers and shared some remembrances of Williams, the jazz legend who lived here for years. …
That stunning young woman pulled onstage by the clowns during the electrocution scene in "Zarkana" on Friday was Jennette McCurdy, who plays Sam Puckett in Nickelodeon’s "iCarly."
THE PUNCH LINE
"NBC News was the first to call the election for President Obama. ABC News was the first to call a cab for Diane Sawyer." – Jay Leno
Norm Clarke can be reached at 702-383-0244 or email@example.com. Find additional sightings and more online at www.normclarke.com. Follow Norm on Twitter @Norm_Clarke. His weekly segment, "Norm Clarke’s Vegas," airs during the "Morning Blend" on KTNV-TV, Channel 13 every Thursday.GALA ENTERTAINERS
A partial list of entertainers who are confirmed for the April 13 benefit gala: Whoopi Goldberg, Will.I.Am, Queen Latifah, Snoop Dogg, Chaka Khan, Gloria Estefan, Bebe Winans, Herbie Hancock, and actor Terrence Hancock.