Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Things To Do

March 21, 2013

D2 supper club opener a huge success

CROSSVILLE — DSquared (D2) Productions' opening of Voices of Vegas (VoV) — the Early Years at the Fairfield Glade Multi-Purpose Building was a resounding sold-out success and there is more to come. Some email and comments from the evening included:

“I thoroughly enjoyed your 'Vegas Show' last Monday! The food was wonderfully delicious and plentiful and the service was great! It was great to have entertainment during dinner. The show was full of wonderful entertainers and a beautiful choice of songs. I loved the girls harmonizing! It was a very enjoyable evening for all! Thank you and keep them coming!”

“Had a bunch of friends there and they were amazed at the talent, the singers and the interaction. Loved Frank Saxton playing through dinner. The food I may say was much superior to a 5 course meal I had recently. Your food was great. Altogether a fantastic night!”

“We really enjoyed the show and the food was very good and plenty of it. Loved the popcorn. Great job.”

“Just wanted to let you all know that we truly enjoyed last evening's dinner and show. Your productions remind us of the old 'dinner theater clubs' with your entertainers. Keep up the good work! Please be sure you have this email on file correctly so we can receive your notices of future events. We haven't missed a one since the Malt Shop Music and Memories.”

“You all should be in Vegas! We’ve been there many times and seen many shows and this beats them all. It was way more than we expected. Can’t believe we had dinner and a show for $20 a piece, what a bargain! The costumes were elegant, singers and musicians superb, food was good (great dessert) and I couldn’t believe how you transformed the room to give it an authentic Vegas feel.”

“We came from Pleasant Hill and we’ll be back! This was the best show we’ve seen in this area.”

The first VoV show focused on performers from the '40s through the early '50s (Andrew Sisters, Peggy Lee, Judy Garland, Pearl Bailey, Ella Fitzgerald, Lena Horne, Rosemary Clooney, Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong, Nat King Cole, Dick Haymes, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr.) with movie segments before dinner showing the history of the early casinos.

The next Voices of Vegas, which will take place on Monday, April 1 (April Fool’s Day), will highlight performers of the mid '50s to the mid '80s and may include the music of Barbara Streisand, Diana Ross, Bobby Darin, Harry Belafonte, Paul Anka, Willie Nelson, Tina Turner, Cher, Wayne Newton, Tom Jones, Pat Boone, Helen Reddy, Andy Williams or Connie Francis. There may be a tune or two from the Rat Pack or Elvis because they were the top headliners during that period; however, a larger venue such as the Fairfield Glade Conference Center is being considered at a later date or a week long run at the Multi-Purpose Center to concentrate on their music and influence in Vegas.

More of your favorite Cumberland County performers will be taking the stage again for another spectacular evening. Cheyenne Graff, Ashley Krohn, Jason Sanders, Frank Saxton and Terri Ann Utsey will join Dennis Donald to bring you yet another sophisticated and fun-filled evening of music, style, and laughter. There will be no repeats from the first show but there will be more classic, timeless and memorable songs as well as another delicious dinner and a pre-show movie about the history of Vegas in the '50s through the '80s.

Cheyenne Graff has been mentored by D2 for almost a year, just before her 13th birthday. She first appeared in their Cinco de Mayo program at Legends and the House of Hope benefit titled Boogie Woogie, Ballads & Blues and went on to be featured in most every D2 production. She won first place in the Fair Park karaoke contest at Pioneer Days and has since appeared in other benefits at the Palace. She has the voice and stage presence of someone far beyond her years. Cheyenne is a student at Crab Orchard Elementary, an animal lover, cheerleader and also plays guitar. She will be auditioning for the X Factor next month. If you haven’t seen her, don’t miss this event.

Ashley Krohn is another D2 discovery whose first onstage appearance was at the Palace in the D2 Production of Return of the Rat Pack. Ashley has been cast in most of their shows as well as performing gospel with Dennis. You can also see her with Joe Rice’s group. She just keeps getting better and has the voice and heart of an angel. Ashley is now a much sought after performer who does many benefits. She is a valued employee at Advanced Rehabilitation where she interacts lovingly with patients who adore her.

Frank Saxton began his career as a saxophone player at the age of 12. At 16, he was playing in jazz clubs and at 18 became a member of the U.S. Army Band, followed by 3 years with the Halifax Symphony in Canada, then onto Broadway shows, including Mame, Maggie Flynn, Follies 1776, and work at Radio City Music Hall. He moved to Las Vegas where he stayed for 28 years playing in shows for more than 70 top stars, including Tony Bennett and Sammy Davis Jr. Frank has appeared with numerous Big Bands, including Si Zetner, Larry Elgart, Bob Crosby, and Jimmy Dorsey. He studied voice and piano and in 1988 changed his career to performing as a vocalist and entertainer in the many Las Vegas hotels, lounges, and convention shows. He recently moved to Tennessee and recorded a CD in Nashville, in which he sings and plays the saxophone. He also composes and arranges music for other acts.

Jason Sanders is a talented musician/singer/songwriter from Carthage, TN. He is the young man that was in D2’s “Malt Shop Music & Memories” show last November playing a mean Jerry Lee Lewis on keyboard. He also accompanied Regina Stephens at the November RHA dinner and appeared at the Palace this month with the Cumberland Jamboree. Jason played for six years in the casinos in Vegas and is currently playing in at the casino in Tunica. He plays several instruments among them the keyboard, dobro and fiddle and has won several contests for his fiddle playing.

Terri Utsey is a delightful and comedic entertainer from Rockwood, who was showcased at the last RHA dinner in Fairfield Glade. Debuting in the area in 2010, Terri has fast become one of the favorites, singing all genres of music from Patsy Cline to Liza Minnelli. She has performed several times on the Cumberland Jamboree with the Trackside Band, was a lead singer with the Dillon Street Band, performed with DSquared Productions, and participated in numerous benefits. Terri is noted for her singing versatility, stage presence and wit.

Dennis Donald and D2 are known for excellence in entertainment as well as value. Dennis is an actor, singer, musician, recording artist and as co-founder of D2 enjoys mentoring new talent and bringing talent together.

The caterer for this event is Dixie’s Catering and we guarantee enough food for all! Dinner for this show will be a chef choice salad, pork chop, real mashed potatoes and gravy, vegetable, rolls, Dixie’s surprise dessert and unlimited coffee, tea and lemonade. Soft drinks can be purchased and you can BYOB. There will also be free popcorn during the show. You won’t be disappointed!

Find someone to share an evening of good times, great tunes, class, style and an abundance of fun as we take you on a trip back to the unforgettable days of glamour and mystique. All this takes place at 6 p.m. on Monday, April 1, at the Fairfield Glade Multi-Purpose Building on Lakeview just past Legends, Druid Hills and the outdoor pool. The doors will open at 5:30 and the cost is $25. Tickets for the show only will be eighteen dollars $18, however seating for those will take place after dinner guests have been served.

Tickets can be delivered or reserved by calling (931)-456-1972 or (864)-314-5719 or purchased at the R&B Café on Peavine Road. Seating is limited (first come, but you may come at 3:30 and put a reserved sign on a table of your choice) so hurry and get your tickets now.


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