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April 17, 2014

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VegasBeat — Timothy McDarrah: Lewis always glad to give back

VegasBeat appears Sunday through Friday in the Las Vegas Sun. Timothy McDarrah can be reached at [email protected] or at (702) 259-4096.

WEEKEND EDITION

March 20 - 21, 2004

Jerry Lewis was in Atlanta on Thursday to dedicate the Jerry Lewis Healing Theater inside Emory University's new Orthopaedics & Spine Center.

The theater is the brainchild of Lewis and Emory's Dr. Scott Boden, who share a belief in the power of laughter to heal.

"I've been thinking about this idea since the night my grandmother died," Lewis told Atlanta Journal Constitution. "I was 11, sitting in a waiting room in Newark. It was this clinical, cold, less than warm set of circumstances. This was a dream. I never thought about it in terms of coming to fruition."

Lewis says he would like to see the Emory theater as the launch pad for a more fully realized teaching facility that could examine and instruct others in the healing powers of comedy.

"I would love that. I don't know if I'll see it in my lifetime but oh God, yes. That would be wonderful."

Lewis returns to Las Vegas this week to start recording audio commentaries for 10 of his classic films with his neighbor, Steve Lawrence.

The upcoming DVD releases include: "The Bellboy," "The Stooge," "Cinderfella," "The Patsy," "The Errand Boy," "The Family Jewels" and "The Nutty Professor."

The IMAX attraction "Race for Atlantis" at Forum Shops at Caesars has permanently closed.

A hotel source said that the ride was still popular and profitable, but that "change was necessary to stay competitive."

The next tenant for the space has not been announced.

On March 23 Marlene Ricci, one of the more acclaimed voices in Las Vegas, kicks off her third year at the Riviera with a special performance at the Le Bistro Theatre.

The Learning Channel's "While You Were Out" show tonight features Penn & Teller.

While Teller is out, Penn redesigns some of their backstage real estate at The Rio. When Teller returns to the area, he is beyond surprised.

Check it out -- the show airs locally at 9 p.m. on TLC, Cox cable channel 33.

A guy with one of the best names in town -- UNLV assistant hoops coach Deane Martin -- turned 40 on Thursday.

He spent the day returning from a recruiting trip in Wichita, Kan., before joining friends that evening at Charlie Palmer Steak (Four Seasons).

Andrew Sasson, who is busy running local nightspots Light (Bellagio), Caramel and Mist (Treasure Island) and building a residential condo tower, is launching his first restaurant venture, FIX. The restaurant will open in June at Bellagio.

The dashing young Brian Massie, whose outgoing personality and classic American fare helped make N9NE (Palms) into one of Las Vegas' hottest restuarants -- both in terms of scene and cuisine -- will be the executive chef.

"Andrew has proven himself to be the premier nightclub operator in the country and we look forward to seeing him bring the same energy and excitement to his restaurant FIX," Randy Morton, Bellagio's vice president of hotel operations, said.

Oliver Wharton, a former exec with Jean-George Vongeterichten (Prime) and Michael Mina (Aqua, Sea Blue), and Light Group executives Andy Masi and Sean Christie round out the new management team.

Calling talented kids: Las Vegas talent manager Kim Flowers and independent casting director Joey Paul Jensen (his latest is the upcoming Hilary Duff feature "Heart of Summer") are casting for several upcoming film and television projects.

Jensen has recently cast for shows on the Disney Channel, Nickelodeon and the Cartoon Network.

Interested? Call the John Robert Powers school at (702) 878-7300 to schedule an appointment for next week's auditions.

Judy Robinson of Highway Radio (the FM traffic and music network heard primarily on the Interstate 15 corridor between Las Vegas and Los Angeles) was bouncing around at Imperial Palace's celebrity impersonator karaoke contest Wednesday night.

She was not competing -- she was showing off the cover of Money magazine.

The April edition has a photo of her son Tom and future daughter-in-law Marlene Gonzales on the cover. The story inside is about tips for saving for retirement.

The couple are employees of Boyd Gaming. Tom works at Sam's Town and Gonzales works at the Suncoast.

A Shania Twain impersonator, Las Vegas resident Diane Fabiano, won the evening's competition. She walked off with $500 and a "Legends in Concert" audition.

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