Monday, Sept. 15, 2008 | 2:41 p.m.
Legendary entertainer Robert Goulet heads the list of inductees in the latest class of UNLV's Nevada Entertainer/Artist Hall of Fame.
Goulet, who died in October at the age of 73, will receive the George Sidney Award posthumously at a ceremony Thursday at UNLV's Artemus Ham Hall. Other inductees who will receive the Sidney Award include entertainer Clint Holmes, architect/builder Tony Marnell, dancer Vassili Sulich and the Las Vegas rock band The Killers.
When UNLV opened its Nevada Entertainer/Artist Hall of Fame in September 2003, film director George Sidney was the first inductee.
UNLV created by the hall to honor past and present Southern Nevada residents who have made significant contributes to visual and performing arts and to architecture.
Sidney, who directed such films as "Anchors Aweigh," "Show Boat," Kiss Me Kate," "Viva Las Vegas" and "Annie Get Your Gun," died in 2002 at the age of 85.
The UNLV Hall of Fame its award after him. Past inductees have included "CSI" creator Anthony E. Zuiker, impersonator Rich Little, dancer Nancy Houssels, singer Phyllis McGuire and actor Tony Curtis.
Goulet won Grammys, Tonys and Emmys during his long and illustrious career. His star is on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Canadian Walk of Fame. He starred in more than 40 theatrical productions. In 1960, he originated the role of Sir Lancelot in Broadway's "Camelot," which also starred Richard Burton and Julie Andrews.
In 1982, he married Vera Chochorovska Novak and they moved Las Vegas, where Goulet became active in the community. A cancer survivor, he was a spokesman for the American Cancer Society and periodically gave lectures on cancer awareness, prevention and early detection.
When Goulet died marquees of Broadway theaters, and theaters in many cities across the United States, were dimmed in his memory on Oct. 31 for one minute. On Nov. 9, the day of his funeral, Las Vegas honored the late singer and actor in an unprecedented tribute by closing the Las Vegas Strip for his funeral procession. As he took his last ride down the Strip, every Las Vegas hotel-casino featured his name on its marquees.
Clint Holmes is a charismatic entertainer who is at ease singing jazz, opera, show tunes and pop hits. Born in England, he is the son of an African-American jazz musician and a British opera singer. When he was 8, his mother began teaching him classic vocal techniques at home, while his dad showed him how to scat-sing in the jazz clubs. Holmes says it was the best of two musical worlds claiming his mom taught him how to sing correctly and his dad taught him how to enjoy it.
Holmes' first break came as announcer on "The Late Show" with Joan Rivers, followed by a two-year stint on Entertainment Tonight and host of the Emmy-winning talk/variety show "New York at Night." He has made numerous TV appearances and had a Top Ten smash hit, "Playground In My Mind (My Name Is Michael)."
Named Atlantic City's Entertainer of the Year three times, he starred in Clint Holmes' "Sophisticated Rhythms," a dynamic stage show journey through music of the 1940s through the present. In 1996, Holmes' show "Comfortable Shoes" opened in New Jersey, and a new and updated version of the show opened to rave reviews in Chicago in 2002.
Holmes headlined for six years at Harrah's and was Harrah's "Entertainer of Choice for the Millennium."
Anthony "Tony" A. Marnell II was born in Riverside, Calif., and his family moved to Las Vegas in 1952 where he graduated from Rancho High School. After earning a degree in architecture from the University of Southern California, Marnell moved back to Las Vegas where he married and had two children.
In 1974, Marnell became general manager Corrao Construction Co., which specialized in hotel/casino projects. In 1982, Marnell became the chairman/owner of Marnell Corrao Associates, which has built and remodeled more than 70,000 rooms for companies such as MGM/Mirage, Harrah's Entertainment, Caesars Palace, the Boyd Group and Wynn Resorts.
Marnell's projects have included volcanoes, parades in the air, Omnimax theaters, riverboats on the Colorado River, the transformation of a Howard Johnson's to a Caesars Palace in Atlantic City. His company built the Bellagio and Wynn Las Vegas and is currently constructing its own resort, The M.
Marnell is a trustee emeritus on the Foundation Board of UNLV and a member of the USC Board of Councilors, the board of directors of the National Italian American Foundation and Duck's Unlimited.
Vassili Sulich, born on the island of Brac in what is now Croatia, began improvising performances at an early age. As a refugee during World War II, he joined a Yugoslav children's theater in Egypt.
He received classical training in the Zagreb Opera Ballet. He studied in London for a year and moved to Paris to become a member of Ballet de France de Janine Charrat. He began his choreographic career with "Suite Lyrique," "The Wall" and "Oedipus Rex."
Sulich went to Broadway in 1964 as principal dancer with "Folies Bergere" and was the producer of "Folies Bergere" at the Tropicana in Las Vegas for nine years.
He held classes for classically trained dancers who appeared in other shows on the Las Vegas Strip and taught classical ballet at UNLV. In 1972, Sulich organized a free performances with volunteer dancers that became the inaugural performance of the Nevada Dance Theatre (later renamed Nevada Ballet Theatre). The company was co-founded by Nancy Houssels, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame last year. Since founding the company, Sulich has created 51 ballets, including "Walls in the Horizon" and "Cinderella" for the company's 15th anniversary season.
Sulich retired from the Nevada Dance Theatre in 1997 and moved to Rio de Janeiro, where he is staging choreography for Teatro Municipal and the company Joven. He is also an accomplished artist, a published poet and has written his autobiography, "Vision in the Desert."
The Killers, an alternative rock band, was formed in 2002 and consists of Brandon Flowers (vocals, keyboards), Dave Keuning (guitar, vocals), Mark Stoermer (bass guitar, vocals) and Ronnie Vannucci Jr. (drums, percussion).
During shows at Las Vegas clubs, the Killers attracted the attention of agents and signed with the independent British label Lizard King.
The band's 2004 debut album "Hot Fuss" was classified multiplatinum by the British Phonographic Industry and the Recording Industry Association of America. It included the hits "Mr. Brightside," "All These Things That I've Done" and "Somebody Told Me." Its second album, "Sam's Town," produced the hit single "When You Were Young" and "Bones." Those albums have sold more than 12 million copies worldwide. The band released a compilation of B-sides and other rarities as its third album, "Sawdust," last year.
The Killers have received more than 60 award nominations and have won more than a dozen awards from the likes of MTV, Britain's New Musical Express and the National Association of Recording Merchandisers. The group has seven Grammy nominations but no wins.
IF YOU GO
What: UNLV's Annual Nevada Entertainer/Artist Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
When: 6:30 p.m. Thursday; VIP reception follows at 7:30 p.m.
Where: Artemus Ham Hall
Tickets: Admission to the ceremony is free, tickets to the invitation-only reception are $200 per person; 895-2455