What do you get when you mix passion, talent and friendship? You get Sandy Hackett’s Rat Pack show, that’s what.
After meeting Sandy, his beautiful wife Lisa and the cast a few weeks ago at the Mayor’s office, we were anxious to see the show.
We made a date, got the tickets, grabbed a cold drink from the bar and settled into our seats. Not really sure what to expect. After all, Sandy Hackett grew up around the real “Rat Pack.”
The show opens with the legendary comedian and father to Sandy, Buddy Hackett, playing the voice of God. Setting up the show’s story line that the boys needed to return to Las Vegas to do one more show.
From there, you are transported to that magical era in Las Vegas entertainment history. Those long lost nights Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr and Joey Bishop shared the stage at the Sahara.
This is where most other tribute shows lose it. They try to recreate a performance that happened over fifty years ago. They act out an event that has been immortalized in so many ways, its almost criminal.
The real Rat Pack show’s were never really shows at all, but a chance for a few friends to get on stage and let off some steam; to sing, dance, and tell a few off the cuff jokes. To have fun, while allowing a few hundred strangers in to be a part of their fun.
Sandy and his gang capture that essence, that feeling of those nights very well. They don’t recreate anything because what happened on those nights was not a rehearsed performance.
Sandy Hackett’s Rat Pack show is not a recreation nor is it a tribute show. It’s a show that captures a memory and a special time in the history of Las Vegas with some really talented people. It’s not what you expect and its so much more than you expect.
When you sit in the audience, you get the feeling that these five very talented artists on stage are really good friends who happen to look and sound like a few famous people we know from our past. And just like those nights so many years ago, you are being invited to join in their fun.
Each person has their own take on the character they are capturing and we get to see their own talent shine through that character. But more importantly, we get to see the talent is mixed with a real friendship that works. That friendship is what gives the show an extra boost most other shows lack.
Sandy’s wife is Lisa Dawn Miller. The daughter of the late Ron Miller, the man who wrote some of Frank Sinatra’s greatest hits. She plays Frank’s one love and sings a few of her father’s unpublished songs as well. Her soft, deep feminine voice adds to the feeling of the era.
Sandy Hackett, capturing the spirit of Joey Bishop (with the blessing of the man himself), adds to the song and dance with a razor sharp comedy knife that includes everyone in the cast and a few unsuspecting audience members.
The show may be designed around a bygone era, but they make the music relevant and the comedy shticks are priceless. Joey/Sandy had the PA laughing and that is almost impossible to do. Sazzy, well I think she is still hurting from laughing too much and enjoying the music.
This show is a labor of love and it shows. The cast is talented, they capture the moments we like to think we remember and they do it very well and with great passion.
I think most any Vegas tourist will enjoy seeing this show. You will love the music, the memories and the laughter they create. The show captures the same thing that first captured a lot of peoples attention about Vegas; entertaining fun with some famous friends. Sandy Hackett’s Rat Pack Show is one show you will want to see again and bring your friends to.
It’s an afternoon show, so it’s perfect for ending a busy day doing tourist stuff or a great start to an evening of fun and entertainment.
We had a great time and you get to meet the cast after the show.
Listen for more about our interview with the cast on the next Podcast