Jimmi Kilduff Jr.
Jimmi Kilduff Jr.

VAN WERT — A brand new Las Vegas-style musical show will be presented for the very first time on the stage of Van Wert’s Niswonger Performing Center of Northwest Ohio in mid-August. And residents of the area who enjoy attending shows at the Niswonger will have the opportunity to be part of the audience as the show is videotaped for future promotion.

Titled “Vintage Vegas with Jimmi K,” the show will feature the music of Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and Tom Jones performed by singer-dancer Jimmy K, backed up by an incredible band featuring seven musicians, including some from the Van Wert area, and team of amazing dancers from Las Vegas.

Otherwise known as Jimmi Kilduff Jr., Jimmi K is a powerhouse entertainer who has appeared in multiple off-Broadway productions, at the world famous Birdland Jazz Club in midtown Manhattan, and as a featured entertainer aboard both ships from Hawaii to Dubai for the Princess and Norwegian Cruise Lines. Later this year, he will be appearing in the lead role of a brand new musical written by Tony and Grammy award-winning Steven Schwartz, writer and composer of the great music that helped make the Broadway show “Wicked” so successful.

This brand new show, never seen before, will be rehearsed on the Niswonger stage and presented for the first time on Friday, Aug. 17 and again on Saturday, Aug. 18 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 and are available at npacvw.org or through the Niswonger box office 419-238-6722 Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

So, how does a show like this come to life on the Niswonger stage in Van Wert, Ohio? It started when the Boyd Dance Studio, started by Wanda Boyd 40 years ago in New Bremen, Ohio, held its dance recital shows for the first time at the Niswonger on June 2.

Two years ago, Wanda’s daughter Erin and her husband LJ Jellison, moved back to New Bremen because they desired to raise their young children in a beautiful Midwest town like New Bremen, Erin’s hometown. And they brought with them an idea.

An idea that blossomed while they were in New York. Erin was a Radio City Music Hall Rockett, and her husband LJ performed on Broadway, including a role in the original cast of “Wicked.” It was an idea that continued to grow while they were in Las Vegas and LJ was performing as a featured artist with “Cirque du Soleil.”

When the Boyd Dance Studio brought them to the Niswonger Performing Arts Center of Northwest Ohio, they found a beautiful and professionally-operated theater and decided it was a great place to launch their idea for a new show.

It’s that new show, “Vintage Vegas with Jimmy K,” produced by Jellison Entertainment, that will debut on the Niswonger stage on Friday and Saturday nights, Aug. 17 and 18 at 7:30 p.m. Residents throughout the area can be part of this unique experience by contacting the Niswonger box office or going to the website npacvw.org.