Like Elvis Presley, he had a twin who died at birth. from the 1950s through the ’70s, he was the highest paid entertainer in the world. After making his Las Vegas debut at the Last Frontier in 1944, he went on to play the Riviera, Aladdin, Sahara, El Cortez, the original MGM Grand (now Ballys), Caesars Palace and the Las Vegas Hilton. He basically invented superstar hype and showbiz bling. He was once called a “deadly, winking, sniggering, snuggling, chromium-plated, scent-impregnated, luminous, quivering, giggling, fruit-flavoured, mincing, ice-covered heap of mother love.” He will be played by Michael Douglas in a biopic due in 2012.
It’s Liberace, of course, who would have been 91—and undoubtedly hamming it up in his famous style—on May 16. Beginning May 9 (Mother’s Day, appropriate for this famous mama’s boy), the Liberace Foundation & Museum celebrates Mr. Showmanship with a week of discounted admission ($3.50, the admission charged when the museum opened in 1979), extended hours and gift shop discounts, concerts (Philip Fortenberry, Ali Spuck, Danny Wright, Travis Cloer, 10-year-old pianist Abigail Varghese and others), movie screenings, autograph signings—and birthday cakes.
Make sure you stop by and toast the ol’ ivory-tickler—the Museum makes it easy with free shuttle service to and from Bally’s, Bellagio, Treasure Island, Mirage, Flamingo and Excalibur. And decorate your Facebook page with a photo of you and Lee—his wax figure is on loan from Madame Tussauds Las Vegas for the week.