Wow- look at the time! It's Idol time. A new season of AMERICAN IDOL is upon us.
Do you know what my favorite time is?
It isn't then or there. It's here. My favorite time is magic time. Let me explain.
There's a moment when I'm filled with a sense of wonder and awe. Here in Las Vegas, there's a special feeling that rises up as the sun dims behind the mountains and the neon starts to glow on the strip. Night has come to the desert. You can feel the excitement and anticipation. It is electric for serious!
I get chills. I do. Chills, as the lights dim and the curtain rises. I feel it as I open a menu or slide in a new CD. Magic lives in the popping of a cork and in the clinking of the glass. As the 21 dealer with a King showing turns up his hole card, you really feel it .
Do you know what excites me?
The exhilerating present is where all the real action is.
I taped an interview with SAMMY DAVIS JR. a year before his death, for a yet-to-be-completed book on Las Vegas entertainment and, when I asked his favorite of all of his hit records, Sammy quickly replied, "The NEXT one." He made it clear that we are part of a great show business tradition and that I should honor that. But, he told me, "What's next is what's important. It's what's exciting." I've never forgotten that.
A couple years ago, we launched a show review website and I wrote a few hundred full-on critiques. Now it's way too easy to find something you don't like or can't quite understand. But, if you want to be fair and honest about it, you need to take it all in and do your best to absorb what's happening at that moment. I'll always remember sitting in a theatre surrounded by thousands of mostly teenage girls screaming for singer/magician DARREN ROMEO. Did the audience like him? No. They loved him and that moment was what it was all about. Magic time for serious.
Thinking of exciting magic, I recently watched video from Guatemala of a handsome young magician named JOSE MIGUEL GONZALEZ. The faces of the pretty girls in the audience said it all. And in that space between "What's he going to do?" and "How did he do that?" lives wonder and bliss. Jose is a cool guy.
When I see talent- real talent- I am filled with awe. Awe, and I mean that.
ANTHONY SOUMIATIN, an accomplished young performer and the son of multi-talented parents, runs a great website: FANTASTIC TALENT. When you want inspiration, go to: www.fantastictalent.com.
As American Idol begins a new season, wouldn't it be cool to be able to know who is going to win? Come on, I know you're curious. I'm happy to tell you how. It's easy.
Watching the talented singers compete on American Idol fills me with hope, the selfsame hope I feel whenever I'm in the now.
Do you want to know how? Here's what you do: When you watch the performers, do so with an open heart. I mean it- be open to what is happening then and there. Don't even wonder what they may have done wrong or what they might do better, because that is rubbish from the past and folderal of the future. No sir, stick with the present. That's where the magic is. Do your best to set your judgments aside and let the performances move you. Keep track. Make notes. Talk with your family, your friends. If you're honest with yourself, you'll know the top two or three finalists by the time the show moves to Hollywood. You will, you'll see.
I asked an artist friend of mine if he knew what time it was. "It's now," he said.
Wow- I'll be damned if it isn't!
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