Dondino Has Finally Come Back Home to Las Vegas
By Nikki Artale
Las Vegas Informer
Photos by Nikki Artale
The Italian American Club on August 11, 2013 welcomed Dondino back to Las Vegas and the audience once again fell in love with the magnificent Dondino. Vibrant and stunning as ever, dressed in his signature tuxedo, Dondino captured the audience. His style and humor had the audience recalling memories of why they fell in love with him so many years ago when he first performed in Las Vegas from 1979 to 1984. Michael Gaughan hired him to play in the Royal Inn, which later became the Royal Americana. Onto the 4 Queens Hotel & Casino where he headlined for 11 years as a matinee show. Another calling came in Iowa where he opened a country club and many more years of success. In 1994 Dondino opened up his theater in Branson and then back again to Las Vegas where he will now live permanently. www.dondinoshow.com
Dondino’s talented band filled the room with music that touched the hearts and souls of everyone, from the Italian ballads to the beautiful music of Fiddler on the Roof and the powerful voice of Dondino.
Debbie Richards, Musical Director
Dondino was presented with a few awards and a proclamation from the Honorable Carolyn G. Goodman, Mayor of the City of Las Vegas. She proclaimed August 11, 2013 as Dondino Day, recognizing Dondino for donating his time and talents for over 25 years. Governor Brian Sandoval issued a Certificate of Recognition for Dondino’s charity work and achievements.
Ms. Senior Nevada Pageant recognized Dondino for his Outstanding Contribution to the Pagaent and Charlie Christy, the Nevada Executive Director presented the award. Dondino started the pageant in 1986.
Assemblyman James Healey, district 35, presented Dondino with an award for his years of humanitarian work in the state of Nevada.
Other longtime friends and fellow entertainers were on hand to welcome Dondino. Curt Thomson, Executive Director for Railroad Pass Casino and Gold Spike gave him his second engagement at the Frontier Hotel and Casino.
Jonas Vece, known for his vocals for The McCoys, came to honor and support him.
Dondino and Donna Gummelt started the Read to me Foundation which donates books to Ronald McDonalds, Head Start programs and Children’s Hospitals. Donna writes them and Dondino does the music which are put on CD’s to go along with the books, and the books are narrated in Spanish and English to help children learn to read and speak English. He wants to help the children of today because he remembers coming to America as a young boy from Italy and not speaking the language because his family only spoke Italian in his home. He proudly tells the heartwarming story of going to school and learning to sing the song “America” by learning phonetically the words that took him 6 months to learn. www.readtomefoundation.org
Dondino is officially home where he belongs and the audience let him know how they love him with the standing ovations they gave him. His connection to the people is charming and electric and his great humor and personality comes shining through.
“Music is who I am” says Dondino and his mission is to love the people, connect with the people, entertain the people and make that one person happy. He sure made more than one person happy that night. Butterfly kisses to you. We love you Dondino.
Nikki Artale, a woman of many professional backgrounds and experiences, is originally from a small town in North New Jersey. She moved here to Las Vegas back in 1995 to pursue the booming real estate market and is a contributing columnist for the Las Vegas Informer – interviewing the stars and entertainers for “Vegas Stars.” She has hosted a radio talk show, Celebrity News at All Talk Radio and has also been a part of a live internet webcast at “Live at the Studio.” Her numerous interviews with those responsible for the glamour behind Las Vegas can be found on her website www.ILoveLasVegasNV.net.
Nikki has also been active in the entertainment industry behind the camera – she belongs to the Screen Actors Guild and has been in numerous movies and has also judged screenplays for the Las Vegas Film Fest. Not only has she been behind the camera in the industry but also as a critic and has written many show reviews. You can usually find her at big entertainment events with her Nikon camera and smile, ready to review, interview, and capture the moments that make the night.
Aside from her lengthy experience in the entertainment industry she is also a successful Real Estate broker with 30 years of professional and dedicated services. She serves the greater Las Vegas area and has an in depth knowledge of the real estate housing market. She prides herself in giving excellent service to buyers and sellers with 100% of her time. You can contact her with the information below for any questions, comments or requests of services.
If you are Buying or Selling go to my real estate site to search the MLS for listings: Las Vegas Real Estate.