It's altogether fitting and proper that Petula Clark's next-to-last engagement for Caesar's Palace should be a compilation of some of her best moments and songs from her last several Palace dates. Clark, who will be back at Caesar's in August and moving to the Riviera Hotel later this year, is at the Circus Maximus with special guest-star Tim Conway making his third appearance.
This time out, her songfest includes a handful of hits of others that she has made her own by her special treatment, such as the Beatles' provocative "Fool on the Hill," or Gilbert O'Sullivan's "Get Down," and several of her own, particularly Chaplin's "This Is My Song," "I Couldn't Live without Your Love," "Don't Sleep in the Subway," and, of course, her trademark "Downtown."
Moreover, Clark is one of those twice-a-year Strip visitors from overseas (like Humperdinck, Newley, Bassey, Jones, etc.) who make each appearance a little more special by adding a distinctly international flavor to their performances.
One of the most naturally witty and amusing performers of that ilk, Petula's quick, dry wit is an audience warmer and charmer.
One of the high spots of her show is her short history of her own musical career, starting with her childhood appearances for the Armed Forces and "G.I. Jive," a tribute to Judy Garland and a stunning "Man That Got Away," and her latest discovery, American country-western music as typified by "Your Cheatin' Heart."
Her Elegance, Petula Clark, is back from Britain with another of her classy songalogs and this time has Tim Conway aboard for laughs. It adds up to a highly entertaining, casino-sized 80 minutes.
Clark's pleasant tones are at home with just about any tune, this time tossing in a Bread medley ("If," "Baby I'm a Want You"), Gilbert O'Sullivan's "Get Down," Charlie Chaplin's "This Is My Song," the Beatles' "Fool on the Hill," a salute to Judy Garland with "The Man That Got Away" and to Nat King Cole with "Mona Lisa." Her whine of the country-western "Your Cheatin' Heart" has a certain cultured earthiness. Unobtrusive, good sounding "Angelettes" femme trio blends; Frank Owens masterfully guides the Nat Brandwynne orchestra.
Las Vegas Evening Outlook
April 5, 1974
Frankly, there are a number of singers on the circuit today who drive us up the wall. Then, like a breath of fresh air, comes a vocalist who can really sing. Such a singer is Petula Clark.
The diminutive British songstress is back at Caesar's Palace where she appears twice or thrice a year. Usually, when a singer returns to the same location, one has to listen to the same repertory over and over again. This is especially true in Vegas where there is a constant audience turnover. But Miss Clark forgoes this route. She comes up with new material, or at least does not repeat the same material without a long lapse of time.
We don't refer to the "war horses" which the crowd demands - signatures the star has made her trademark. She always included such favorites as "Downtown," "Don't Sleep in the Subway," "Call Me," "I Couldn't Live without Your Love," etc. Think how tired she must get of repeating those, day in and day out, year in and year out!
Her current Caesar's stint also includes "A Song for You," "If," "Baby I'm a Want You," and Charles Chaplin's "This Is My Song," which he wrote for his film The Countess of Hong Kong.
Petula also sings "Get Down" written by the British composer Gilbert O'Sullivan (wonder what his real name is?), which reminds us that another Britisher who adopted the name of a famous composer, Engelbert Humperdinck, is in Las Vegas, currently singing at the Riviera.
But back to Petula. She is also heard in "Yesterday Once More," "G.l. Jive," "Mona Lisa," "Your Cheatin' Heart," "The Man That Got Away" and "Fool On the Hill."
The Nat Brandwynne orchestra is conducted by Frank Owens, and a trio of female vocalists known as the Angelettes provide vocal support and background.