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Former ÔIdolÕ joins her childhood idols


What: Society of Seven, featuring Jasmine Trias

When: Opens tonight, 3:30 and 7 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays

Where: Gold Coast Showroom

Tickets: $29.95; 251-3574 or

When ÒAmerican IdolÓ finalist Jasmine Trias was growing up in Hawaii, her parents sometimes took her to see one of HonoluluÕs most acclaimed show bands — the Society of Seven.

Trias never dreamed that one day she would co-star co·star also co-star  
A starring actor or actress given equal status with another or others in a play or film.

tr. & intr.v. co·starred, co·star·ring, co·stars
To act or present as a costar.
 with the troupe in Las Vegas Las Vegas (läs vā`gəs), city (1990 pop. 258,295), seat of Clark co., S Nev.; inc. 1911. It is the largest city in Nevada and the center of one of the fastest-growing urban areas in the United States. .

Society of Seven returns to Vegas tonight, opening a run at the Gold Coast. Trias replaces Lani Misalucha Lani Misalucha (born 1970) is a singer from the Philippines. Profile
Lani Misalucha, dubbed Asia's Nightingale, is a Filipina pop, rhythm and blues, opera singer, and one of the acclaimed singers from the Philippines who currently resides and performs at the
, who has her own show, ÒVoices,Ó at the Hilton.

ÒWhenever a member of our family would come in from out of town, we took them to the show,Ó Trias says. ÒI always thought that if I became an entertainer I wanted to do that type of show, performing in that way.

ÒI love performing with them. TheyÕre like my seven uncles. We have a great time.Ó

Since coming in third in the 2004 season of ÒIdol,Ó the 23-year-old entertainer has become a major star in Asia, especially the Philippines, her parentsÕ native country.

After ÒIdol,Ó she released a self-titled album that sold 14,000 copies in the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area.  but went platinum in the Philippines.

Society of Seven co-founder Tony Ruivivar is impressed with TriasÕ talents.

ÒWith Jasmine we have a lot of new stuff in the show,Ó he says. ÒShe is an amazing talent. She never stops getting better and better and sheÕs getting into all kinds of comedy, dancing and impressions.Ó

Ruivivar and Bert Sagum founded the group, which is known for its diverse musical skills, comedy and impersonations, more than 40 years ago. Once known as the Fabulous Echoes, Society of Seven arrived in Vegas from the Philippines in the mid-Õ60s. In 1969 the band took its act to Hawaii, where it performed for more than 30 years. In 2001 a second SOS SOS, code letters of the international distress signal. The signal is expressed in International Morse code as … — — — … (three dots, three dashes, three dots).  troupe stayed in Hawaii and the band returned to Vegas, where it has performed at the Las Vegas Hilton The Las Vegas Hilton is a hotel, casino, and convention center in Las Vegas, Nevada. It is a joint venture between Colony Capital, which owns 60 percent, and New York City-based REIT Whitehall Street Real Estate Funds, which owns the remaining 40 percent. , the Golden Nugget Casinos:
  • Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Laughlin, Nevada
  • Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey (defunct)
  • Golden Nugget London in London, Trocadero
Other uses:
, the Aladdin, BallyÕs and the Flamingo.

Its run at the Flamingo ended 18 months ago. Since then SOS has been performing at Indian casinos and other venues across the country.

The cast consists of Trias; Ruivivar, who is the host and sings; Sagum, vocals and percussion; Hoku Low, bass; Roy Guerzo, keyboards; Wayne Wakai, saxophone saxophone, musical instrument invented in the 1840s by Adolphe Sax. Although it uses the single reed of the clarinet family, it has a conical tube and is made of metal. ; Vince Mendoza Vince Mendoza (born 1961) is a music arranger and composer.

Mendoza was born in Connecticut and studied trumpet as a child, influenced by classical music, soul and jazz. He graduated in music composition from Ohio State University with a B.A. degree in 1983.
, drums; and Michael Laygo, vocals. Gary Bautista, who had been lead vocalist with the group for 22 years, died in 2006 at age 54.

ÒSince Gary died weÕve been through two or three singers,Ó Ruivivar says. ÒI think we may have found the permanent replacement with Michael. He has a powerful voice and he can do anything — R&B, pop, Broadway, even some operatic stuff.Ó

Ruivivar says the showroom at the Gold Coast, which seats about 450, is perfect. Except for occasional stints by dance bands, the room has been dark since the musical ÒForever PlaidÓ ended its run there in December 2006.

ÒThe resort is perfectly located to bring in locals as well as tourists,Ó he says. ÒItÕs a very visible intersection, with the Rio and the Palms nearby.

ÒWeÕre very excited. ItÕs good to be back in a permanent place again.Ó

Jerry Fink can be reached at 259-4058 or at
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Author:Jerry Fink
Publication:Las Vegas Sun
Date:Nov 6, 2009
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