‘Chicago’ Becomes Broadway’s 4th Longest-Running Show

The threat of Hurricane Irene didn’t stop the cast and crew of the musical “Chicago” from celebrating a Broadway milestone.

At a small backstage party at intermission during Friday evening’s performance, the show marked its 6,137th performance — tying “A Chorus Line” for the fourth longest-running show in Broadway history.

The next performance of the John Jander and Fred Ebb musical will give it sole possession of the fourth-place spot. Because of Irene, that performance has been pushed back to Monday night.

The achievement also means that “Chicago” becomes the longest-running American show in Broadway history. Ahead of it are “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Cats” and “Les Miserables,” all British imports.


Online: http://www.chicagothemusical.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Playa Wisdom: Everyday Man Mantras

Every year throngs of free-spirited people flock to the Black Rock Desert north of Reno near Gerlach.

Besides the obvious heat, these artsy individuals share some common traits 

If you never have been – tear this sheet out and hang it at your campsite.  

Survival is God. Water and sunscreen. Need I say more? Actually I do. Also bring canned goods, toothbrush and paste and don’t forget the aloe vera for those days you’re coaxed into naked Twister. And popular to contrary belief, alcohol does not soothe away sunburns, but it does help distract you!

Respect is king. Respect to one’s self, others and the environment is paramount. Unlike the so-called Default World (where participants live an average 358 days per year), attendees yearn to experience different points of view, even cultures in some cases. If you don’t like something, fine, there’s always another adventure awaiting you.

Community is queen. Look around you. Self-expression is everywhere and sharing thoughts and ideas keep ‘Burning Man’ alive. Gifts or small trinkets are commonplace: someone offers you a wrapped ice cream sandwich, neighbors help assemble your campsite at midnight…my boyfriend fried bacon for four days straight for us and our neighbors. Note: nothing bonds you closer to others than bacon. Believe me the smell is intoxicating especially when you’ve been eating canned soup for three days straight. 

Appreciation is everywhere.  Like the metal outfit that just sauntered past you? Compliment the girl (or guy.) Smiles are abound and contagious. If money is not accepted at this event, compliments are. Use them in abundance. And don’t discriminate. How else will you meet exotic people? 

Curiosity is a must. Why else go? 

Personal prejudice is non-existent. If you want to remain sheltered inside your own biased thoughts, stay home. Even the super fine playa dust doesn’t discriminate so why should you? (I’m still trying to get it out of my digital camera.) We’re all there for the same reason and fighting is not one of them. 

Opportunity is abound. Volunteer, help with art installations, work at the coffee shop or ice ‘shop.’ Ride a green bike around the Man. Ask artists questions. Leave personal messages on the temple. Front gate volunteers even hand out activity books filled with bazillions of events and classes. 

Creativity is a basic. Decorate yourself with fake jewels and call yourself Princess Lego. No one cares! Which is also the beauty of it. Have fun with it. Take a vacation from yourself for that week. It’s ok. No one’s watching. 

Participation is soul nourishment. I’d never trade in my time at Burning Man. It’s something you can only experience once a year. And apparently in sweat drenching, water vaporizing heat. But it’s totally worth it! 

Self-fulfillment is nirvana. (See above!)    )’(

Jon Stewart to Host Session With Nirvana Members


Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart will host a Q&A session with the surviving members of rock band Nirvana to celebrate the 20th anniversary of its album “Nevermind.”

Stewart will host the event on SiriusXM for two hours on Sept. 24. It will feature fans, Nirvana band members Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic, and Butch Vig, the producer behind “Nevermind.” Kurt Cobain, the band’s lead singer, committed suicide in 1994.

“Nevermind” was the band’s second album and has sold 10 million units in theUnited States. It features Nirvana’s biggest hit, “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”

Grohl is now the lead singer of the Foo Fighters.

SiriusXM will also launch the all-Nirvana channel, Nevermind Radio, on Sept. 23 until Sept. 28.



(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Winehouse Album Becomes Century’s Bestseller

Amy Winehouse is still hitting music milestones after her untimely death last month.

Britain’s Official Charts Company says Winehouse’s Grammy-award winning “Back to Black” has become the best-selling album in theU.K.in the 21st century.

The company, which tracks music sales in theU.K., said Wednesday that “Back to Black” overtook James Blunt’s 2005 debut album to claim the title this week.

Winehouse’s second album had jumped to the No. 1 spot on the charts shortly after the soul singer was found dead in herLondontown house on July 23. An initial post-mortem failed to determine cause of death, and Winehouse’s family said Tuesday that toxicology tests showed she had no illegal drugs in her system when she died.

An inquest into Winehouse’s death begins in October.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Ben Stiller to Receive British Comedy Award

Ben Stiller is being honored for his comedic contributions by theBritishAcademyof Film and Television.

The group’sLos Angelesbranch says Stiller will receive the Charlie Chaplin Britannia Award for Excellence in Comedy.

Veteran producer Nigel Lythgoe called Stiller “a master of comedy who, just like the legendary filmmaker for whom this award is named, embodies the remarkable multi-hyphenate talents of actor, writer, director and producer.”

Lythgoe serves as chairman of BAFTA Los Angeles.

Stiller will receive the honor at the Brittania Awards on Nov. 30, when actress Helena Bonham Carter and animator John Lasseter are also being recognized.

The 45-year-old Stiller has earned box-office success and critical acclaim as a writer, director, actor and producer. He will next be seen opposite Eddie Murphy in “Tower Heist.”

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Burger King Mascot Retiring

Burger King’s spooky “The King” mascot is retiring so the struggling burger chain can refocus its marketing to reach new customers.

The mascot has been around for years, but recently has become a more prevalent and somewhat creepy presence in ads – showing up in people’s beds and peeping in their windows.

The fast food chain, which has suffered declining sales, will roll out a new advertising campaign this weekend sans “The King” that will focus on its burgers. The campaign is the first since Burger King switched advertising agencies in July.

“We won’t be seeing The King for a while,” a Burger King spokesman said.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Ed O’Neill says Getting Hollywood Star Aug. 30

AP Photo

“Modern Family” star Ed O’Neill tells his hometown newspaper that he’ll get his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at the end of the month.

O’Neill tells the Youngstown, Ohio, newspaper The Vindicator (http://bit.ly/onIPUb) that he’ll be honored Aug. 30. Induction speeches will be given by Sofia Vergara, who plays his wife on the

ABC hit, and Katey Sagal, who played his wife on Fox’s “Married With Children” in the 1980s and `90s.

A Walk of Fame spokeswoman could not confirm the date.

The 65-year-old O’Neill says he almost turned down the star. He says, “It’s bizarre — names on a sidewalk. People can spit on it,” but his 11-year-old daughter persuaded him to accept.

He says that, after the initial shock, he realizes the honor is “something to be proud of.”


Information from: The Vindicator, http://www.vindy.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)