Dateline South Lake Tahoe: Bethany Owen Masters 1001 Voices

South Lake Tahoe is a small and close-knit community, laid back and tourist-oriented.  It's a scenic 3 ½ hour drive from the Bay Area - as long as the roads are clear - but it's worlds apart.  Here you'll find a pine-rimmed majestic mountain lake, snow-capped Sierras for ski buffs, and high-rise casinos in a cluster at the Nevada state line.  Come inside these glitzy palaces, where, in the small lounges and intimate showrooms, you'll find hard-working and high-energy entertainers devoted to their craft.  These performers are fueled by the applause, the stage and the show's spotlight.  This is more than a career to them; it's a calling.

Bethany Owen with her "One Voice" headliner show is an example of a dedicated crowd-pleaser.  Owen has been earning her stripes for decades as a singer, dancer, and comedienne; she now demonstrates her formidable skills as an impressionist into a 90-minute nonstop show.  Owen does hilarious songbird interpretations of top female entertainers from the jazz age to today, with several non-singing icons thrown in for fun.  She masterfully mimics gestures, facial tics, hair, and vocal flexibility, giving her a resume of 1001 voices and faces.   

Director and Producer Jim Whirlow knows how to create audience buzz in this 90-minute nonstop package of entertainment.  The laser light show and surround sound music keep the showroom energy high while Owen does quick costume changes right onstage.  From Marilyn Monroe to Cher, Owen manipulates the crowd, snagging audience members to participate in her act with loads of laughter.  Owen delivers enthusiasm and an over-the-top measure of fun, no matter how many seats are filled - the hallmark of a true professional.   

There's no other act quite like Owen, combining comedy, song, and character changes.  Her Judy Garland "little hobo" finale, against a clever montage of old film clips, makes you grin as she is joined onstage by Robert, the house maître D.   It's music, it's laughter, and it's pure entertainment for all ages.  Playing at the intimate 150-seat Golden Cabaret Showroom at Horizons Casino Resort on Fridays through Tuesdays at 8 PM.  Call 800-683-8266 for reservations and schedule.  Tickets $17 to $34.