College of Fine Arts

Hall of Fame 2006 Inductees

UNLV inducts producer Frederic Apcar, actress Mary Healy Hayes, architect John Klai II, and entertainer Wayne Newton in to the 4th Annual Nevada Entertainer/Artist Hall of Fame at UNLV during an award ceremony at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 21, 2006 in Artemus Ham Concert Hall on the UNLV campus.

Frederic Apcar

Mr. Apcar is probably best known as a pioneer in the world of the Las Vegas production show. From Paris, France to the Las Vegas Strip, Mr. Apcar took the desert by storm. From choreography to costumes, from elegant to electrifying, Mr. Apcar's productions are remembered today as an integral part of the Las Vegas entertainment world. Countless dancers longed to be considered "Apcar Girls" featured in one of the many successful stage productions such as Casino de Paris, Vive Les Girls, Bare Touch of Vegas, Bedazzle, Hot Streak, Hot Shock, Fast Company and Showbiz. From stages in Las Vegas at the world famous Dunes and around the world Mr. Apcar's productions delighted the masses.

Born on September 16, 1918 in Paris, France, Frederic Apcar had aspirations of stardom at an early age. At age 12 Mr. Apcar began a string of jobs ranging from a market laborer, dock boy, coal stoker, and bartender's assistant all in hopes of earning passage to set off on his life's journey to the stage. Through career stops as a bookkeeper and waiter Mr. Apcar's hearts desire remained with the theater and at the ripe old age of 16 he set foot on stage as a chorus boy in Follies Bergere and never looked back. While performing, Mr. Apcar continued his education and soon graduated from College Jules-Ferry much to the pleasure of his parents. With hard work and dedication, Mr. Apcar quickly moved up the ranks to principal dancer, and eventually became half of one of the most famous dance pairs in the world, Florence and Frederic.

In the early 1950s Mr. Apcar moved to the production side of the stage and soon after moved to Las Vegas. Quickly becoming an icon of the 1960s Las Vegas stage show, Frederic Apcar's work is synonymous with the birth of the glamour and style that still represents Las Vegas entertainment today.

Today, Frederic Apcar resides in Las Vegas with his lovely wife Olga. Their two children Frederic and Elisabeth currently live in Las Vegas as well.

Back to top

Mary Healy Hayes

When Mary Healy was crowned Miss New Orleans in 1935, it was clear that she was well on her way to stardom. Her career blossomed in many mediums and when she married Peter Lind Hayes in the 1940s their act quickly made them one of America's favorite comedy teams.

Mrs. Hayes appeared in no less than 20 films and countless television and radio appearances in a variety of roles as well as appearing as herself. As the hostess of the Peter and Mary Show (later known as the Peter Lind Hayes Show) in the 1950s, Mrs. Hayes was a household television fixture. In addition to this weekly variety show co-hosted by her on and off screen partner Peter, Mrs. Hayes' prolific television career included Peter Loves Mary, Lux Video Theater, Ford Star Jubilee, Shower of Stars, Goodyear Television Playhouse, Star of the Family and Studio One to name just a few.

Mrs. Hayes shined brightly on the silver screen as well; her name appeared in credits beginning in the 1930s all the way through the 1980s. Examples of her vast body of work includeMiracle on 34th Street, Star Dust, Strictly in the Groove, The Yanks are Coming, Ride, Kelly, Ride, 20,000 Men a Year, Second Fiddle, and the cult classic The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T.

Mary Healy Hayes also captivated the world of print with her memoirs written with her husband Peter. "Moments to Remember with Peter and Mary" is a fascinating account of their lives and careers together.

Now residing in Las Vegas, Mrs. Hayes has become a much beloved member of the community and a grand patron of the arts. Mrs. Hayes also enjoys the role of loving mother to Cathy and Michael.

Back to top

John Klai II

Mr. Klai is recognized for designing hospitality and gaming resorts. Klai Juba Architects has many noteworthy projects including the remodel and expansion of the MGM Grand, Luxor, Hard Rock Las Vegas, Orleans, Silverton and the design of the entire Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino.

A North Dakota native and graduate of North Dakota State University, Mr. Klai began to apply his architectural candor to the desert when he moved to Las Vegas in 1978. His first mark to the Las Vegas Strip was made as he headed the design of the Caesars Palace expansion project for Marnell Corrao Associates.

Mr. Klai, a member of the American Institute of Architects and the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, is well respected within his field and is extremely active among his peers. He has served on the Nevada State Board of Architecture, Interior Design and Residential Design since 1999 and was elected Chairman for 2006.

The Las Vegas Valley has benefited greatly from Mr. Klai's commitment to his community. His company sponsors the Klai Juba Lecture Series at UNLV which attracts internationally known architects to speak at the school. He personally awards an annual scholarship to the UNLV School of Architecture and is currently spearheading a campaign to endow the program through the establishment of the Council of Excellence. In addition, countless local organizations including the Lied Discovery Children's Museum, Boys & Girls Club of Las Vegas, Opportunity Village, Child Haven and Nevada Public Radio have felt the generosity of Mr. Klai and his firm. Mr. Klai has been recognized numerous times for his philanthropic work within the community, which includes receiving the Governor's Arts Award for service to the arts, business and patrons.

Back to top

Wayne Newton

From his first trip to the Grand Ole Opry at age four, Wayne Newton knew that entertainment was his calling. By age six he had mastered the piano, guitar, and steel guitar, the first of his 13 instruments. Weekends were devoted to performing with his older brother Jerry. Wayne's first presidential performance came as a first-grader whe he performed for President Truman; this would be the beginning of a long USO involvement, one that continues today as he is the "Chairman of the USO Celebrity Circle."

Mr. Newton's severe asthma forced the family to move to Phoenix in 1952. It wasn't long before a Las Vegas talent scout snagged the Newton Brothers, a 20-week contract turned in to a 46-week engagement. At this point Jackie Gleason helped propel Wayne to national prominence - but Mr. Las Vegas would soon return to Las Vegas to take his place as one of the first big showroom headliners. Since then Wayne Newton has performed well over 25,000 shows in town - in addition to his worldwide appearances - and can still be seen today performing at The Flamingo.

Wayne Newton's career successes have stretched beyond the musical world in to acting as well. Roles in Vegas Vacation, Ocean's Eleven, The Adventures of Ford Fairline, The Best of the Best II, and Night of the Running Men are just a few of Wayne's many film credits. In addition to the big screen, Mr. Newton has amassed a large television resume as well including appearing in Las Vegas, According to Jim, Kingdom Hospital, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Renegade, LA Law and his award-winning turn on Ally McBeal.

Wayne Newton is one of the most decorated entertainers of all time. Being recognized for his enduring service to the USO, his selfless contributions to numerous philanthropic organizations and his representation of the Native American community - his awards are countless.

Mr. Newton is the loving father of two daughters, Erin and Lauren. He currently resides in Las Vegas with his wife Kathleen.

Back to top

Produced by UNLV Web Communications | © 2014 University of Nevada, Las Vegas Website Feedback