Kay Kolbo continues to live her dream, singing in the “King for a Night” show with tribute artist Dennis Wise, the ultimate Elvis fan. It will be 39 years on Aug. 16 when Elvis Presley passed away, and a fitting tribute will be paid to him during the show in the Chrome Showroom at Santa Fe Station Hotel & Casino on Aug. 13.
Kolbo was a teenager when Elvis passed away. After playing on the then-undefeated girls softball team, she came home to watch the newscast that Elvis had passed away. Her brother Kevin was a big Elvis fan and the entire family also embraced the music and memory of Elvis. “I still remember it like it was yesterday,” Kolbo told AXS.com. “It affected everyone.”
Wise and Kolbo met in 1985 in Minneapolis while she was working at the nightclub he was performing in with his show. In fact, he and his family would move to Las Vegas a year after Kolbo and have remained friends. In 2012, he reached out to her to perform backup for the show. While Kolbo had always performed as the lead singer, with her love of Elvis and respect for the show, she is thrilled to be a part of it. “I consider Dennis, [his wife] Marcia, [brother] Jim and [adult son] Shane as my second family.”
Born and raised in the small town Mohall, North Dakota, Kolbo credits her school for encouraging the students to participate in music, drama, and sports. “I started in choir and discovered my passion for it,” she told AXS.com. Her older brother introduced Kolbo to popular music “When I listened to Barbra Streisand Live at the Forum I knew I wanted to be like her and I wanted to sing.” Kolbo would practice singing to Streisand’s music as well as getting over stage fright to perform.
Kolbo would continue studying music even though she pursued a fashion merchandising degree in Minneapolis. It was during this period she decided to change careers and pursue singing and entertainment. “Where better to begin a career than the Entertainment Capital in the World?” Ironically, after moving to Las Vegas, Kolbo traveled including a six-month stint performing in Japan. She has virtually toured almost every state and all over the world. After moving back to Las Vegas, live music was being replaced with taped music, so Kolbo changed careers to food and beverage and media. However, she kept singing and is happy to perform with Wise.
During his performance, Wise shares trivia about Elvis's music and movies. He has over 600 Elvis songs in his catalog and recreates movements, phrasings, and mannerisms while dressed in authentic jumpsuits and accessories. There is also country music and pop songs performed for everyone’s musical taste.
Kay Kolbo will perform in the "King for a Night” show with Dennis Wise in the Chrome Showroom at Santa Fe Station Hotel & Casino at 7 p.m. on Aug. 13. For tickets, click here.