Variety (March 1953)

Record Details:

Something wrong or inaccurate about this page? Let us Know!

Thanks for helping us continually improve the quality of the Lantern search engine for all of our users! We have millions of scanned pages, so user reports are incredibly helpful for us to identify places where we can improve and update the metadata.

Please describe the issue below, and click "Submit" to send your comments to our team! If you'd prefer, you can also send us an email to with your comments.

We use Optical Character Recognition (OCR) during our scanning and processing workflow to make the content of each page searchable. You can view the automatically generated text below as well as copy and paste individual pieces of text to quote in your own work.

Text recognition is never 100% accurate. Many parts of the scanned page may not be reflected in the OCR text output, including: images, page layout, certain fonts or handwriting.

66 NIGHT CLUB REVIEWS VeJiteBday, 'March 25 ,* I953 Hotel Pierre, N. Y. Glsele MacKenzie, Cappella m & Patricia, Stanley Melba and Cluco Relli Orchs; $1.50 and $2 cover. Gisele MacKenzie/ Frehch-Can&- dian songstress who has created a bit of a vogue on CaPttoL records came into the, plush- GotUlioos Boom of the Hotel P^re. twdier a sartorial handicap but; won .them over with her vocal .yeryc >and. bounce. Accoutred^- ,p e.rh,a p.^J “wrong,” according,, to - the?' syelfe style of costuming* this' is a me- chanical detail that cap readily be corrected since, obviously, the bal- lerina type of costuming isn’t for her; also, as a slim gal she might be wise in exposing less decolle- tage. But there is np gainsaying her vocal style, ahd after some rerou- tining, perhaps with a view to first f et over her Cap impact with “Le iacre” and “Don’t Let the Stars Get In Your Eyes,” she’ll travel smoother. “Eyes” was actually first done by her although Perry Como’s subsequent plattering, and also one or two of the other male colleagues, eclipsed her pioneering Mentioning her French extrac- tion, she might do one more such number, not necessarily such over- ly familiars as “La Vie En Rose, but something unique* In the same idiom, despite Jier. expert stylizing of “Fiacre,” that one is now so closely identified with Jean Sa- blon, both - in the parallel slick saloon circuits and on .wax, that a substitution there, too, might be in order. She has a natural, mike voice and her knowledge of the micro- phonic technique becomes quickly evident. She-hits her stride from midsection on to a strong end-re- sult with the Merman-Garland- Martin impressions. An unsuspect- ed (at least until that point) flair for comedy v was her Texas hill- billy, nasal twang-voiced version of “Auf Wiedersehen,” as incon- gruous a conception as 'could- be imagined. It got a spontaneous salvo. This segued into “Stars In Your Eyes,” wearing the same 10- gallon skimmer, and perhaps she should explore moire in the com- . edy vein. Certainly -the slick bis- tros could use a change of pace from the pash . and/or other straight chirps. Her VAdios” (avec flowers) was a warm signoff. Cappella & Patricia, in the en tr’acte spot, are expert ballroom- ologists who have’ been away over four years in London and Contin- ental bookings. They also make mention thereof. Their routines are imaginatively conceived, • and his holds of her in upside-down and other equilibrium and gravity- defying holds are spontaneous ap- plause-letters. Per usual,, maestro- impresario Stanley Mqlba, who is responsible for the talent roster along with his standard dansapa- tion, does a competent emcee job Abel. floor. It whams ’em. Stern, who has been leading a combo out at he Bevhills Hotel, has done this v hing before, notably at Las Vegas. His group consists of 10 fiddles, two viols, bass, drums, piano, ac- cordion and a mixed vocal quintet. Colorfully togged out, and with precision timing, group gives put with Viennese and gypsy airs, •“Hora Staccato,” with the vocalists -~a good, unbilled unit by the Way—chiming in on ‘‘You Are Love” and a Romberg medley of “Softly As Tn A Morning’s Sun- rise,” “One Kiss” and “Stout- Hearted Men.” The act took 25 minutes. Judging from th£ tumul- tuous reception, it probably could have stayed as long again. Act is getting $2,650 weekly, same as Carle’s orch. The Copsey three follow with a sensuously exciting “Frankie Sc Johnnie” terp interpretation. (The complete costume changes neces-* sitated routining the show in .this order.) George Gobel, booked in here at $650, is a comic who recently started rising in the midwest and is new to the Coast. His standup monolog style—part homespun and part' smart delivery of delayed catchlines—is rather .fresh around here, .Better* just about all of his material is fresh. It took the crowd a few minutes to warm to him, but by the time he got around to finally using the guitar he carries, doing a takeoff on the Ink Spots' Maybe” styling, he had many in near- convulsions. Comedically, Gobel has the whole bill to. him self; he not only- suffices, he’ll make the grade on the bigtime .cafe circuit. Possibly this bill would flow more evenly if Gobel and Harold Stem swapped spots. Too, if Stem could utilize his singing quintet a bit more it would be welcome; their chirping is the only caroling on bill. Carle’s crew tinkles out its highly danceable arrangements before and after show, alternating withyRon Perry’s essentially La- tune combo. Bert. Hotel Radtssoiw Bpls. (FLAME ROOM) Minneapolis, March 21. Lucille Sc Eddie Roberts, Teddy Sc Phyllis Rodriguez, Don McGrane Orch (7); $2.50 minimum. St alter. Hotel, L. A. (TERRACE ROOM) Los Angeles, March 20. George Gobel, Harold r Stern*s Singing- Strings (22), Bob Copsey pancers (3), Frankie Carle Orch (14), Ron Perry Orch (5); $2 cover.. ' ' ' ■ * Gogi’s LaRue, N. Y.. Beridce Parks, Ted Straeier Orch; Pepito Lopez Band; $5 mini- mum. Gogi’s LaRue has its best chance to crack into the eastside’s class nitery belt With its Qurrent attrac- tion, thrush Bernice. Parks. Miss Parks IS" the third' headliner here (preceding were Joanne Gilbert and Celia Lipton) since room add- ed acts to its already established plush eatery policy and. she’s sure to help Gogi's in its new effort. Mdss parks is a savvy songstress whose pro qualities project throughout the repertoire. She knows how to peddle a tune for top impact and gets ditto Tesults from rhythm numbers as well as ballads. Although the room, which is wide and broad, impressed as a cold spot for a performer. Miss Parks purveys plenty of warmth in her songalog and emerges with hefty palming. Her red tresses and costume, designed for s.a. values, help. Her show knowhow is evident not only in her song-selling manner- isms" but in the effective produc- tion values that go into her 25- minute turn. She gets plenty of power into her big songs via an etched vocal choral backing which comes out over, the mikes. It's dis- concerting at' first but grows on the .listener for socko effect. Miss Parks opens with a stand- out arrangement of “And The An- gels Sing,” then switches to a Latino-grooved “Just A Lot of Love.” Changes pace again for a rousing rendition of the current faith tune click, “I Believe.” Such followup songs as “Do It Again,” “House of The Rising Sun,” “Ten- derly,” “September Song” and “It Takes* a Good Man To Do* That” show her off in an assortment of piping moods that range from Warm ballad readings to -hot rhythm shouting. Encores strong with “Padam-Padam” in French and anglais. Ted Straeter's orch hits a neat beat for the terpsters while Pepito Lopez fills the niche for the rhum- baddicts. Gros. In a town where nitery bills are tending more and more to brief one-man or one-woman shows, the Statler deliberately reverses gears and herewith trots out a floorful of entertainment personnel, Preced- ing this booking Hildegarde and her own orch under Bobby Norris’ baton went it. alone. This is a layout which will have to build biz primarily on word-of-' mouth, and off that it should mount. Frankie Carle has a solid rep here, and his draw will be • the only automatic one. His band recently played the'Terrace Roofri hnd has been returned because spot found* that lately, following th£ only floorshow of an evening, crowd would disperse. . Carle’s contagious dancing rhythm kept ’em around buying drinks and he’ll do it again. Fact is, it is very necessary in a setup such s: as this. Talent cost for this bill, for instance, is‘'about $7,300, and since policy (which really should be changed to conform to other niteries here) is to toss ’em one show nightly, save Saturdays, when two are offered, the'patrons who come early, have a leisurely dinner and then lean back and-re- lax during the floorshow—during which, incidentally, no table serv ice is dispensed. It creates a prob lem. The 75-minute show is opened by the Bob Copsey Dancers (one man, two maids) doing an 11-min- ute East Indian barefoot routine, Garb looks authentic and the an- gular * aqtics are good, but what really gets the idea across is the bizarre facial makeup of the three. Next, Harold Stem’s Singing Strings swirl on from rear of room k , qwesoiqely* Jills, .up* the entire Lucille &( Eddie Roberts’ annua visit to this class' room is produc- tive of the accustomed and ex- pected amount of customer pleas- ure-. First-rate*, entertainers,, they have entrenched themselves as lo cal supper cluh favorites, and their performance oii this occasion should further cement their pop ularity here. Couple’s “thought transference” stunt still proves a never-failing source of surprise, amazement, mystification and even laughs, each performance usually providing some astonishing results. The fact that* they work with tongue-in- cheek ahd give the stunt a comic instead of the usual serious coat- ing, kidding each other, paying guests and the trick itself, serves to make the acp more effective and more in a tony supper club’s groove. Their magic travesty, pat.- ter and clowning also help to cre- ate a rib-tickling occasion. A big click in their initial Flame Room appearance the preceding fortnight, Teddy & Phyllis Rodri- guez hold over and again are show- stoppers with their superior step- ping and amiable antics. Their down-to-earth approach and evi- dent personal enjoyment enhance the * act’s -entertainment. value and spell some novelty. Their South American Charleston version con- tinues a knockout. Rees. Baker Hotel, Balias (MURALROOM) Dallas, March 20. 5 Dick Lee, Abbey Albert Orch (9); $1 cover. Dick Lee, handsome 22-year-old blond trading on his first Essex platter sides, is on the bistro J)elt with a surprisingly good sesh. En- thusiastic youngster works hard with his vocals and displays a good tonal range. Opener here was marred by a noisy half-a-house and an off-and-on mike, yet he scored with a lusty “Why Don’t You Be- lieve Me” .and finely shaded “You’ll Never Walk Alone” to a nice mitting'. Lee gets off rhythm oldies, “Them. There Eyes” and * “After You’ve Gone,” capably but with ex- aggerated arm-waving. Ample plugs are inserted for his waxin’gs, “Infatuation” and “Eternally,” which are reprised, naturally, in his act. Lad is a comer, has ability and a fine voice. When he absorbs show savvy and sheds the string bowtie, he should carve a name for himself. * . Abbey Albert, new orch leader here, opens the show with expert 88'ing of Grieg and Tchaikovsky concertos. Rdliy Foo’s, Montreal Montreal, March 20. Josh White, Len Berger, Fred Toldy; no cover or minimum. Basing their rep on a superb kitchen, excellent ' service and surroundings plus a solid single acter in Starlight Room, the man agement of Ruby Foo’s continues to lure the coin to this swank out- skirts eatery when most of the boites in’ midtown are going through the worst pre-Easter ses- sion in recent years. Current aftet*- dark slump has little or no effect on biz at this particular spot; where most cafes are trimming vbudgets etc.. Ruby Foo’s is expanding and Friday (20) opened two new rooms bringing capacity to 700, the largest (outside of hotels) in Montreal. Headliner is Josh White, return ing to Montreal for the first time in several seasons. Balladeer packs as great a wallop as ever and offers a cinch songalog that includes such faves as “Molly Malone” and “One Meat Ball” to contrast effectively with more literal and earthy items as “Sam Hall” and “Cindy.”- Re- peated requests on night caught kept guy on for more than 10 num bers, and despite a twisted ankle which cut down mobility on the stand, he covered all tastes even to a brace of audience partish ses- sions. White is ably backed by bass player Jack Kostenuk and 88’er Len Berger throughout stint with pianist. Fred Toldy filling inter- ludes in the semi-classical vein. Newt. El Rancho, Las Vegas Las Vegas, March 20. Jack • Carson, Connie Towers, Rio' Bros. (3), Zoris (2), Roy Chamberlain, Bob Ellis Orch (10); no cover or minimum , sock results. Long duet with Con- nie Towers,- *'You Can Have Your Rancho Grande,” bowls ’em in. the aisles with neat prop breakups for great tag. Roy Chamberlain has the driver’s seat in accomping from the 88, downbeating the Bob Ellis crew and giving Carson and Miss Towers excellent backing. Miss Towers, fresh to Vegas from eastern vidshows and one nitery stand, impresses with looks and by better-than-average thrush-, ing. Although her term is short* consisting of “Zing - Went the Strings of My Heart” and “All the Things You Are,” the blonde eyeful gets plenty of appreciative mitting, particularly in the duet with Carson. Rio Bros, keep everything mov- ing in light vein following Carson’s first foray, by their nonsensical “Cisco Kid” romps with the prop horses. Cap with their slpw-motion stickup for okay exit chuckles. Zoris prime with a fair adagio display. Male of pair is garbed in leopard skin loin cloth and spends his moments onstage tossing the femme, in leopard skin leotard, around .the borders. Rob Ellis orch responds well to all scores < and cues. Will. Embassy Club,' London London, March 16. u Rhapsody in Rhythm,** with Elizabeth Shelley, Charles Yates, Ann Emery, Duke Diamond, Billy Sproud Orch; $4.25 minimum .. There was a time when the “made in Britain” tag meant some- thing, but as result of the postwar invasion of Hollywood and Broad- way stars, local perforfners have only had restricted opportunities in the nitery field. With few ex- ceptions, management has played safe with name attractions from Overseas rather than run the risk Of building up unknown local artists. It is a welcome change there- fore, to see,a completely British production at . the Embassy Club. Not only has local talent been re- cruited but the cast is comprised mainly of unknowns, and some of the girls are still undergoing training. The venture may haVe seemed a hazardous one, but the opening night turnout was reminis- cent of the crowds that are a memory of the lush days. The room was jammed to capacity and additional covers were necessary t& cope with the overflow. The production, staged and de- vised by Buddy Bradley, is refresh- ing in its exuberance, vivacity and youth. The company, is gaily cos- tumed and the routines have a unique vitality. The movement, rhvthm and grace of the dancers highlight the staging. There is, perhaps, an overdose of terping at the expense of vocals, but the dances are far better than the songs and much more to the cus- tomer taste. ' This type production would have been enhanced 100% if the per- formers worked on a stage. As is, most of the intricate stepping is missed by those sitting in the rear of the room and even those who defy convention and stand on their seats, .lose many of the finer mo- ments. The show is in for an in- definite run and looks like a healthy grosser • for the Barnett brothers. Myro. Eddys’, K. C. Kansas City, March 18. . The Continentals (5), Tony Di- Pardo Orch (8); $1, cover. Riverside, Reno . ■ Rbna, March 19 Janis Paige, Al Bernie, Excels Baggage, Riverside Starlets, Bill Clifford Orch; no cover or mini, mum. Color is Janis Paige’s forte From a carrot-hued coiffure’ through a^rich tan and a bright costume, she presents a picture in Technicolor. Then, in a wide stance, a “mobile unit” attack pre- sents the colorful action. Her only serious moment i 3 second number, "Why Don’t You Believe Me,” sung straight to someone away off . on the horizon Novelty material is addressed to ringside, such as . a trick-lyric “Hopalong Paige” with Stetson and guns. Youthful verve helps slack moments. “Lady is a Tramp” gives her good ppportunity to animate and best arrangement is “Pennies From Heaven.” Best from her book is Paige herself with her tall, well-designed frame. Al Bernie is: slow to roll but seems over the hump about the time he’s ready to quit. Pure non- sense takes up too much time and is received rather quietly. Kudos to show biz, “They’re Not Making Them Like They Used To,” men- tions Ted Lewis, et al., with brief impreshes of each and a good copy o£*Jolson. This is dropped too quickly and could be built much bigger. Comic starts with his stories, which may account for nonsensish beginning. “They’re Not Mak- ing” seems a setup for an opener. Revise of events, would seem to straighten Bernie’s act. Material and promotion are okay. A nice voice isn’t exploited enough. Act called Excess Baggage has some pooches which aren’t par- ticularly talented but what they do is cute. K-9s engage in very few feats, but mostly have a doggone good time knocking over differ- ent size suitcases which they ar- rive in. A comely mistress, Alma Michael, gets prettily mixed up trying to keep them out of a sta- tion porter’s way. One little mutt balances on a rope for a swing. Starlets start things off in their usual exciting manner, this time in brief red for some intricate pre- cision. A Calypso “Down in the Indies,” chanted by Betty Holt, has girls in colorful individual ac- tion. Marc. Finding himself minus a head- liner for one frame between the departing Billy Daniels and' on- coming Guy Lombardo package, bonlface Beldon Katleman tagged Jack Carson to make with the. funny biz, with a 'fortnight in the offing later this year. Result is turnaway, SRO, and crowded casinos. Carson has refurbished his en- tire act since romping across the El Rancho Vegas boards' several months ago. Material is sharper With yocks running a steady stream throughout his split ses- sions. Following a brief turn by the Zoris, the burly comedian hits sharply with gags from TV to Texas, culminating in a special “I Love It Here in Las Vegas.” Re- turn is marked by his typical char- acterization of “loser in love,” which builds into ditty, “If There’s a Girl for Every Guy in the World.” Rib-tickling table of impressions •on* Gable,’'Cooper; Colman hits for 1 ing" hand. Frequent appearance of the-Con- tinentals here is almost a tradition by now, this being the fourth time the group has played the room and the Eddy Bros, spot not yet four years old. This time around the musicomedy foursome is .all it has been in previous dates, and that means healthy biz for the two weeks. On the basis of this per- formance the singing outfit looks good for plenty of future dates here. Foursome basically is a singing group, but polished and embellish- ed with precise choreography and light comedy touch. Lineup Of Jay Moffet, Ben Cruz, Bob Garson and Garr Nelson, with Ivan McIn- tyre supporting at the piano, han- dles most "anything in. the song field, ranging from novelties and broad cqmedy to the sweeter bal- lads as well as Latin rhythms and more full-blown numbers. Off to a lively start with appro? priate parody to “The Continen- tal,” and offer a variety including. LeRoy Anderson’s “Syncopated Clock,” medley of spirituals, “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” in bal- lad style, “The Sheik” as a work- out for their repertory of vocal sound-effects, and again in pair of Latin tunes. “Casey at the Bat” is slapstick comedy entry, with, whistling “Sabre Dance” kidded at close. Ably backed by Tony Di- Pardo orch, closing with a rous- - Quin." - Pigalle 9 London London, March 16. “The Blue Bird,** with Catherine Trevil, Peter Sellers, Pamela Palma, Bryan Johnson, Joy-Major, Donald Craig, Louis Conrad, Show Girls (6). Dancers (13) j produc- tion and choreography, Mme. Darmora; sketch, Frank Muir, Dennis Norden; special music, Francis Essex ; lyrics, Bryan John- son; Lew Stone Band; $2.50 mini- mum. Since its inception almost two years back, the Pigalle remains the only pop-priced night spot special- izing in full-scale cabaret. In that short time the innovation has paid off handsomely, and the big res- taurant is a favored haunt for out- of-towners and tourists in search of modest-priced food and entertain- ment. It’s the best value of its kind in the West End. In keeping with the name, the shows always have a distinctive Continental flavor and ever since the first presentation the manage- ment has brought over artists from Paris and other European centres. Current revue adds a Parisian chirper and’ an Italian terper to costar with a British impressionist and vocalist. Catherine. Trevil, who headlines the cqst lineup, is an experienced nitery performer with the lead at the Paris Lido as one of her main of herself with a few pop numbers in English and one or two added in French. She has a. clear and smooth 'Voice but lacks that extra vivacity Which this type of prdduction de- mands. As a singer She gets by, but there can be littie or ho justifica- tion for her embarking in a terping specialty. She tries, but it’s clearly out of her range. On the terping Side, # however, the production has a positive asset in Pamela Palma, a dark-haired Italian looker Who makes with the hips With compelling voluptuous- ness. This girl has style, rhythm aipd exuberance and is the standout personality of the revue. Peter Sellers, a popular, local im- pressionist* disappoints with his in- adequate Script. He has two spots on the bill, .first, in a “Groucho Marx disguise and subsequently as a yarn spinner. On neither occasion does he make any real impact. Bryan Johnson puts over his own lyrics pleasingly but is a wees, stage personality. , . Entire show is lavishly costumed ahd the big numbers are boldly/ " rected. The can-can finale, parUcu* larly, draws strong acclaim. D;nwe music is provided by the Lou fei-one aggregation. ' ' Myro.