When Steve Andrade created his female impersonator show Believe. Divas in a Man’s World for Resorts, he hoped that it would be popular enough to be extended beyond the initial contract.
He really did “believe.” The show just celebrated its one year anniversary at Resorts with no reason to think it is leaving any time soon. Refreshed with a new performer as Dolly Parton and a new opening number, the show remains a vibrant and hilarious tribute to some of great divas of show business.
At a press night to celebrate the anniversary, it was clear the show had lost none of its panache. How could it with Gary Dee still in charge as Joan Rivers. Dee, who acts as the emcee, is the glue that binds the show together with his devastatingly funny one-liners and his hilarious interactions with audience members.
Dee has now been around Absecon Island long enough to pick up the local gossip, so he makes jokes about the inhabitants of Atlantic City, Margate and Ventnor that ring true. A quick example: “Atlantic City is the land of the newlyweds and the nearly deads.” When he starts asking ladies in the audience about their wedding rings, his Joan Rivers shtick goes into high gear. It’s no wonder that Joan Rivers is a big fan. Dee told me before the performance that he’ll be attending one of Rivers’ sold out shows at the Borgata this weekend.
Dee also does a quick tribute to the official diva of the Jersey Shore, Snooki, complete with wig, which adds another layer of laughs to the evening.
Dee is the glue, but the top diva remains Andrade’s magnificent Cher tribute. Andrade makes his own Bob Mackie knockoffs and they are spectacular. He opens the show with a dazzling new number and costume for “Walk Like An Egyptian.” He returns later with the rest of his visually stunning songs including the show’s title track, “Believe,” “If I Could Turn Back Time” and “Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves.”
The new gal on the block is Jason Cozmo as Dolly Parton and he fits in perfectly with an impressive recreation of Dolly. The songs were “”Nothing Dirty Going On” (complete with scenes from The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas on a video screen), “9 to 5,” “Jolene” and “I Will Always Love You.”
Dolly joins the other regulars — the over-the-top Eddie Summers as Patti LaBelle, the premier Liza with a Z impersonator Phyl Craig, who still wows with his “Cabaret” and “New York, New York,” and the only male diva, Frank Moore as Prince. The show also features four dancers — two male, two female — whose choreography, designed by Moore, is excellent and enhances the quality of the show.
It all adds up to an un-Believe-ably fun night.
Believe. Divas in a Man’s World
Where: Resorts Screening Room, 13th Floor
When: Mon., Tues. 8pm; Thurs. 9pm; Fri., Sat. 10pm; Sun. 9pm
How Much: $25
New Piano Bar
Believe. Divas in a Man’s World is not the only enticement on the 13th Floor at Resorts. This is also the home of the Pro Bar, the only gay nightclub at a casino, as well as a new attraction, The Piano Bar. Matthew Kenworthy (pictured) tickles the ivories on Friday and Saturday nights, 9pm-1am, and Bob Egan does keyboard duty on Monday nights, 7-11pm.There are also guest singers who pop in to help provide a lovely atmosphere to enjoy a drink before or after the Divas performance. Expect to hear great standards, showtunes and more.