Saturday, September 22, 2012

Smith Center of Performing Arts in Las Vegas

Luckily I recorded "Dust to Dreams" on Friday night which was a celebration of the opening of the Smith Center of Performing Arts in Las Vegas.  The show was outstanding with special music from all genres but I was especially interested in reading about the history of the Center, where the money came from, how really spectacular a building it is and what it represents to Las Vegas.  Worth reading about.  The big funders for the Center were Donald W. Reynolds Foundation which came from the owner of the Las Vegas Review and other enterprises and Fred W. Smith, who managed them all for years and the city of Las Vegas.  Excellent reading how successful some people can become with their talents and ambition.

There is no doubt the Center will be to Las Vegas what Carnegie Hall is to New York, and so much more.  The Donald W. Reynolds Foundaton will have $100 million to donate a year for 45 years and then it will be closed.  The three children were given $50,000 a year for life but only $1 if they contested the will.  He died in 1993.  Fred W. Smith is still alive and summers in Lake Tahoe but has his main home in Las Vegas.

The show itself was narrated by Neil Patrick Harris which I did not care for.  He has a way of being crass about things that matter--not needed at all.  I would have liked to have known where the name of the Center came from instead of the lame joke he told about it.

One of the most special numbers I thought was three songs sung by Frank Sinatra and danced by a couple dressed in black dress and suit--really spectacular dancing.  Joshua Bell was also a favorite of mine and of course, Jennifer Hudson singing, "The First Time I Saw Your Face".  All of the Broadway musical numbers were wonderful.

It will be shown several nights in September on PBS, well worth the watch.

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