If you have a talent, he’ll showcase it

Before “American Idol,” before “Star Search,” irrepressible cable-access host and man about town Skip E. Lowe will tell you, there was Skip E. Lowe’s Undiscovered Talent Showcase.

The showcase, which seems to be open to all comers, was host on a recent Monday at Cafe Roma in Beverly Hills to acts that included a Dixie Carter look-alike who danced and lip-synced to a Gypsy Rose Lee tune, a linebacker-size singing drag queen called Gigi from Paris, a calypso act, and an octogenarian tap dancer.

“These kids all work,” says Lowe with all the enthusiasm of the Jiminy Glick character he helped inspire. “They’re professionals, all of them.”

He refers to his ensemble as “Beverly Hills Babylon,” and he really means it when he says, “You never know who’ll show up.”

Don’t try to sneak out early. Those who tried recently got this admonition from Gigi on the stage: “You can’t leave,” she said. “I have five more songs.”


-- M.T.J.