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Vegas Diary: After scare, Angel plots return to action

Norm Clarke

March 12, 2017 03:56 AM

Illusionist Criss Angel was briefly hospitalized after losing consciousness while performing an aerial act during his “Mindfreak Live!” show Friday at the Luxor.

The incident took place minutes into Angel’s show while he was suspended upside down during his straitjacket stunt.

Eyewitnesses tweeted he appeared to go limp after spinning for a couple minutes near the end of his escape bid. He was lowered and tended to while the curtain closed. The show was cancelled.

After a puzzling 20-hour silence, the first comment from his camp was a statement released Saturday afternoon that offered details:

"During Friday evening's performance, while attempting his famed upside down straitjacket escape while suspended by his feet, he lost consciousness. He was lowered to the stage and rushed to the hospital where he was evaluated and released early this morning. He is undergoing additional testing today and while it is not yet certain, it is his hope to return to the stage in his hit show Mindfreak Live! at Luxor Las Vegas tonight. He is grateful for the outpouring of love and concern from his fans around the world."

The statement continued: "Due to Friday's events, Criss and his son Johnny Crisstopher were unable to attend a previously scheduled appearance at a fundraiser for Make-A-Wish of Southern Nevada Saturday morning.

“In his absence, a representative of HELP, the non‐profit Criss created to find a cure for pediatric cancer, presented Make-A-Wish with a $100,000 donation."

Angel, usually a social media machine, made no comment, nor did his girlfriend, Spanish-born Mexican singer and songwriter Belinda.

She raised eyebrows about the state of the relationship when she posted a broken-hearted emoji eight hours before his 7 p.m. show on Friday. They had spent much of the week on a ski trip at an unidentified resort.

On March 2, Angel tweeted an image of the couple walking down a ski resort road. He wrote:  “The long and winding road…Till death, I travel only with you mi amor @Belindapop.”

In a Wednesday post on his Twitter feed, the two were hugging on a ski slope. Angel tweeted: “Had such an amazing time with mi amore princesa @belindapop. Now we begin intense creation on a huge surprise for Mexico — are you ready.”

Belinda, who has nearly five million Twitter followers, has been cast in the upcoming “Baywatch” film in the role of Carmen. The film is schedule for a May 19 release.

‘Top’ these big breaks 
Behind every success story are a couple lucky breaks here and there.

Prop comic Carrot Top, who has been headlining at the MGM Grand and Luxor for two decades, was shucking oyster in his home state of Florida, away from the stage for two years, when a friend mentioned he found a gig for him. That got him back in the game.

Another fortunate turn came when he performed at a college showcase.

“I went up there and killed,” said Carrot Top. “Later that night they said I broke Harry Chapin’s record for most bookings at the showcase.” Because of that, “I became this cult guy.”

For more on Carrot Top’s career journey, join me April 2 when he’s my guest on “Conversations with Norm” at Myron’s Place at Cabaret Jazz at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts. Ticket information: 702-749-2000. Proceeds benefit the education and outreach programs at the Smith Center.

The scene and heard
If you’re pining for the good old days of boxing, especially the epic heavyweight battles, here’s a book for you.

Legendary sportswriter Jerry Izenberg, who moved to the Las Vegas area more than a decade ago, has come up with “Once There Were Giants: The Golden Age of Boxing Heavyweights.”

It covers, of course, the period of 1962 to 1997, when Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Sonny Liston and Mike Tyson elevated the sport to new heights.

On this day...
March 11, 2001: Just six weeks after she wins a $34.9 million slot machine jackpot at the Desert Inn, former waitress Cynthia Jay-Brennan is hit by a drunk driver at a Las Vegas intersection. Her sister is killed and Jay-Brennan is paralyzed for life. The driver is sentenced to a long prison term.

Sightings
At the Pacific-12 men’s basketball tournament at T-Mobile Arena: Hollywood super-producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Nike co-founder Phil Knight; and former NBA standouts Gary Payton, who lives in Las Vegas, and Andre Miller…
NFL great Jerry Rice, in the DJ booth at Tao Nightclub in The Venetian on Friday night…
Mike Rowe, host of the “Dirty Jobs” TV series, at “Absinthe” (Caesars Palace) on Friday.

The punch line  
“A new study reveals Americans are getting fatter and giving up on their diets. The study was conducted by going to a water park for five minutes.” – Conan O’Brien.

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