This week, Ira spoke with Jim Caruso, bringing “Jim Caruso’s Cast Party” (with Billy Stritch on piano) to Myron’s at The Smith Center November 18 at 7 p.m. In this episode of Talk About Las Vegas, Jim talks about his Cast Party that features an impromptu open mic/variety show where stars and up-and-comers deliver music and dazzle dazzle; his career in show business; how he came up with the idea of a cast party; why he loves traveling the world, celebrating talent; how the show is successful due to the high-end venues, Billy Stritch and the musicians, and great lighting and sound; why he’s not a snarky host; why it’s a very democratic show; and the party’s most unusual acts.
Jim Caruso made his Broadway debut alongside Liza Minnelli in the smash hit “Liza’s At The Palace!” singing, dancing and celebrating the music and arrangements of the late, great Kay Thompson and the Williams Brothers. The show was honored with a 2009 Tony Award for Best Special Event and the recording was nominated for a Grammy.
For his nightclub work, he has won seven MAC Awards (including 2022 Show of the Year), two BackStage Magazine Bistro Awards and nine BroadwayWorld Awards for his sold-out shows at Birdland, Arci’s Place, The Oak Room at the Algonquin Hotel, and The Russian Tea Room. He has also performed runs in Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Palm Beach, Dallas, Houston, Little Rock, and London.
Jim’s most recent CD is “The Sunday Set,” recorded live from Birdland Theater with pianist/singer Billy Stritch. His solo studio recording, “The Swing Set,” was called “a top-drawer first-rate swinger” by Jazz Times and “a completely entertaining experience” by All About Jazz. “Christmas at Birdland,” in which he harmonizes with Billy Stritch and Klea Blackhurst, soared to #2 on iTunes and #6 on the Billboard jazz chart. His first CD, “Caruso Live and In Person,” went to #1 on both the album and singles charts at Outvoice.com.