Tuesday, September 30, 2014         


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'Five-0' governor raises $27,500 for Alzheimer's unit

By Wayne Harada


Jean Smart, the Emmy-winning actress who portrays Gov. Patricia Jameson on CBS' "Hawaii Five-0" reboot, was a contestant on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" a week ago, earning $27,500 for the Alzheimer's Association. She was struggling through her early questions on the syndicated daytime show hosted by Meredith Vieira when time ran out, but her round was completed off-camera, which is why she didn't appear in the following show. ...

WHEE, THE PEOPLE: Say a prayer and send a cheer to pianist Kit Samson, leader of Sound Advice. He's been struggling and coping with TMJ (temporomandibular joint), a painful disorder that affects the jaw and causes dizziness and headaches and even eye and ear soreness, and although in treatment, his agony lingers and he can't sleep. "If anyone knows how to reduce the pain, call me," said Samson in desperation. He's thinking he won't be fit to provide the entertainment at the 'Ilima Awards fundraiser at the Diamond Head Theatre Oct. 11. ...

Lloyd Kawakami and his Manoa DNA sons Nick and Alex are back from their Japan trek with the usual jet-lag issues and "some serious Japan food withdrawal ... gotta have that ramen, onigiri and katsu," said dad Lloyd. "It was a very successful trip for both Hawaii Tourism Japan and Manoa DNA; we're building up some serious momentum over there." Or, in the vernacular of the trio's new CD, call it an "Evolution." ...

SHOW BITS: Tony Ruivivar and his Society of Seven have been off the last week but return Tuesday for an October rerun at the Outrigger Waikiki's Main Showroom. Ruivivar, who's also helping reboot the Society of Seven LV after his classic group closes, says Jan Luna has rejoined LV and is rehearsing with his old buddies. A second musician is sought to fill the slots vacated by Richard Natto and William Daquioag, and the group will feature a female singer find in a show dubbed "Hot, Hot, Hot." ...

With a two-week break leading up to the Oct. 14 launch of a two-week run at Blaisdell Arena, expect to see a host of Cirque du Soleil "Alegria" acrobats, contortionists and aerialists already in town. A delegation, including local boy Micah Naruo (who is the resident fire knife dancer) and Ukrainian hand-balancer Denys Tolstov, provided a teaser of what's to come for the media. Can't wait for the whole enchilada. ...

CURTAIN CALLS: Hawaii Opera Theatre's Karen Tiller will direct Verdi's "Aida" for Opera Memphis on Thursday and Saturday at the Orpheum Theatre in Memphis. It's a full-length opera, a cappella style, about an Ethiopian slave who falls in love with an Egyptian warrior in an ill-fated love triangle. It's a return to Memphis for Tiller, who directed Puccini's "Madama Butterfly" there last year. Michael Ching conducts "Aida," and he'll reunite with Tiller when he helms Donizetti's "Lucia di Lammermoor" on Feb. 11, 13 and 15, the third of three HOT spectacles, at Blaisdell Concert Hall. ...

When local opera singer Leon Williams took in Paliku Theatre's "Once on This Island," he was so enthralled by the Caribbean flavor he immediately e-mailed New York pal Stephen Flaherty to share his jubilation about the show featuring Flaherty's music (Williams was in another Flaherty hit, "Ragtime"). Naturally, he had to see the Ron Bright-directed show one more time, returning the next night with his composer buddy Roslyn Catracchia, she of the Lisa Matsumoto musicals, who ranks "Island" as one of two of her all-time faves. She's become a one-woman cheering squad for the production via glowing e-mails prodding her pals to see the show twice, as she did. The buzz must've helped; Paliku has extended "Island" for another weekend, through next Sunday. ...

And that's "Show Biz." ...

Wayne Harada's "Show Biz," a fixture for more than 40 years in the Honolulu Advertiser, appears Sundays in the Star-Advertiser. Reach him at 266-0926 or wayneharada@gmail.com. Read his Show and Tell Hawaii blog at staradvertiser.com.

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