Tag Archives: Mirage

Ventriloquist Terry Fator Celebrates First Year in Las Vegas with Red Carpet Party on Saturday

This Saturday, March 13, at 7 p.m., ventriloquist Terry Fator, “The Human Jukebox,” will celebrate a successful first year as a headliner at The Mirage Strip resort in Las Vegas with special red carpet appearances at the Terrry Fator Theatre in The Mirage, 3400 Las Vegas Blvd. South. 

Confirmed celebrities include: Terry Fator, Fred Willard (Actor), Katherine Boecher (Spy Next Door), Michael Gladis (Mad Men), Rich Sommer (Mad Men), Kimberly Locke (American Idol), Richard Burgi (Desperate Housewives; Lie to Me), James Kyson Lee (Heroes), Dee Wallace (Actress), George Wallace (Comedian), Rick & Corey Harrison, Chumlee “Pawn Stars” (History Channel), Cast of Thunder From Down Under, Elena Machine (High School Reunion), Cast of Human Nature, Taylor Barton (NASCAR), Angelica Bridges and the cast of Fantasy, Clint Holmes (Entertainer), Murray Sawchuck (Magician), Tommy Wind (Ventriloquist), Skip Martin (Entertainer), Nevada’s First Lady Dawn Gibbons, Marty Allen (Comedian), Dani Lewis, Dan Horn (Ventriloquist), Jimmy Nelson (Ventriloquist), Jay Johnson (Ventriloquist), Kristy Swanson, Ronn Lucas (Ventriloquist), Clinton Detweiler (Ventriloquist), Robert Kelly (Comedian), Ricardo Laguna (BMX pro), Sin City Sinners (Entertainers), Brooks Wackerman (Bad Religion), Mr. Doubletalk (Pop culture figure) and Zowie Bowie (Entertainer).

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Tiger Woods’ Mistress Kalika Moquin Starts Back to Work in Las Vegas

The job status of alleged Tiger Woods mistress Kalika Moquin is no longer a mystery. Moquin sent an e-mail last Thursday announcing she would be resuming her position as director of marketing and events for Bare pool lounge at The Mirage in Las Vegas.  She will continue to handle marketing for Light Group’s Sunday night events at The Bank nightclub at Bellagio.

The e-mail made no mention of the Woods scandal.

 Bare opens March 15.

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Celebrity Birthday Party Soirees Galore in Las Vegas This Weekend

Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash was in Las Vegas Friday headlining the 20th anniversary birthday party at The Mirage, dubbing the event” Slash and Friends.” The axeman’s so-called friends included fellow GNR bandmate Matt Sorum and previously-mentioned fellow drummer Tommy Lee; Hole’s unladylike leading lady, Courtney Love; Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry; Maroon 5 hottie Adam Levine; Pussycat Dolls’ stunner Nicole Scherzinger; musician/screenwriter Rob Zombie; Led Zeppelin drummer Jason Bonham; and Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick. What’s more, Keifer Sutherland served as master of (the star-studded) ceremonies. 

Whew, try saying all that in one breath- and we’re just getting started…

 If club hopping and spotting celebrities are your cup of tea, don’t forget to check out Her Greatness, the inimitable Paris Hilton as she graces Body English, the nightclub at the Hard Rock Casino & Hotel.  This is THE favorite Las Vegas nightclub for Hilton, but don’t expect to spot her until around 11 p.m. – a gaggle of cackling groupies are a sure-fire sign of her presence. 

Hilton watchers will remember the mini firestorm that erupted about a month ago when a local gossip columnist suggested the scandal-prone heiress was “wasted” at Wasted Space via Twitter. 

Sober, tipsy, wasted or otherwise, Hilton will ensure Saturday night is a smash as she hosts “Smashtime” at Body English, along with E! Personality and BE Saturday night resident Clinton Sparks. 

But if being in a state of mindless DJ bliss is your ticket, might want to head down tonight to the Rain nightclub at the Palms Casino around 10 p.m. as Paul Oakenfold presents Perfecto. 

However, then again, if you’re a firm believer that a wholesome family celebrity life can indeed happen in Las Vegas, then put on your swimming trunks and head over to the Wet Republic ultra pool at the MGM this afternoon as the terrible actress, poor singer, and the sister of Jessica, an escalating train wreck and wife to an annoying band member, Ashlee Simpson-Wentz turns 25 today, blowing the candles out on her paparazzi pie.

Yep, the C-list celebritybirthday party guests will most likely celebrate by spending time with husband Pete and cute son Bronx Mowgli today and her family; though we’d really rather she would hang out with an acting coach. 

That said, it’s pretty safe to say the senior Simpson sister’s ex, Nick Lachey, won’t be anywhere near Wet Republic or the sisters’ SPF this weekend – though he will be in town this weekend. 

Lachey, however, has been spotted in and around the Venetian/Palazzo (including at First Food and Bar on Thursday) and will likely stay on property, for the most part. What’s more: Lachey’s current flame Vanessa Minnillo is rumored to be with him. 

There are a lot of other notable Las Vegas birthday candles to blow out this weekend.

The Mirage is turning 20; PT’s, a local dive chain, is celebrating an amazing fog-filled 27 years; Tao is toasting its fourth birthday; and Lavo is about to mark a year of success and excess on the Strip. 

All these birthdays mean three things: Lots of cake and lots of candles — and lots of celebrities, too. 

Paris Hilton was also at the Vision Expo yesterday, promoting her new line of sunglasses at the Gripping Eyewear booth (#18103), but the blonde ambition’s endorse-a-palooza didn’t stop there: Hilton took her fashionable show down the street to the Hard Rock Hotel, where she strutted her stuff in a poolside fashion show.  You might think of Hilton as a real life Barbie– you can dress her up, but be very careful when and where you take her out. 

Today, the Vision Expo will be graced by rapper Pitbull who will take to the Revolution Eyewear booth at noon. Also at the Expo on Saturday will be PGA Tour golfer Kenny Perry, swing coach Matt Killen, and vision trainer Larry Lampert, who will be appearing n behalf of Transitions Optical (booth #10053). While the trio of golf pros will be chatting up Transitions lenses, they’ve also promised to share a few tips to help fans improve their golf game, too. 

Meanwhile, Mario Barth’s “Biggest Tattoo Show on Earth” also got under way on Friday, across the street from MGM at Mandalay Bay, with some 1,000 of the hottest tat artists. The three-day ink fest also features a sizeable collection of celebs, including Tommy Lee, Jack Osbourne, Mark McGrath, Evan Seinfeld, and Duff McKagen. 

Barth’s action will move to the Hard Rock on Saturday, where tattoo legend will co-host Inked magazine’s first annual Inked True Colors Awards, which will feature a special performance by The Bronx.  After that he and his entourage will likely move the party to New York-New York after the awards, however, as Beastie Boys DJ extraordinaire Mix Master Mike takes to the turntables at a tattoo show afterparty at Rok. 

While the Tao restaurant-nightclub has released the mile long list of confirmed guests for this evening’s four-year birthday party, everyone knows the place will be crawling with more celebrities and VIPs that what is listed. 

The big names on the list now include actress Amanda Bynes; actor Mekhi Phifer; Dr. Allison Cameron from “House,” aka Jennifer Morrison; and “Blade” vampire Stephen Dorff.  But it doesn’t end there, oh no… Aaron Paul, Adam Gregory, Amanda Righetti, Beth Ostrosky, Brandi Cibrian, Carson Kressley, Clifton Collins, Danielle Panabaker, Eva Amurri, Jason Kennedy, Jennifer Gimenez, Krysten Ritter, Patrick Sebes, Selita Ebanks, Spencer Grammer, Terrence Howard, and last but not least, Zachary Abel.

Naturally, the pre-released list of celebs attending the Tao party will likely serve as a mere starting point in terms of the who’s-who’s of the party. And, considering the plethora of stars in town this weekend, it’s not hard to imagine how much the guest list stands to grow by the end of the night.

 Meanwhile, at the MGM Grand tonight, AC/DC will entertain at the Grand Garden Arena.

 Another, though entirely different, Australian-born act will step into the spotlight tonight, too, however the second Down Under-born and bred show will go down at The Palms: Kylie Monogue will mark her return to North American soil and the North American stage tonight with a performance at the Pearl. 

A very different show will take place at Texas Station tonight, as all-American country superstar Randy Travis takes to the stage. 

Also, tonight, L.A. party boy Brent Bolthouse will bring the West coast party to Privé, where he will serve as guest DJ for the night. 

And as if the weekend’s worth of birthday bashes and anniversary soirées isn’t enough, there will be yet another blow-out on Sunday at The Bank.  Suffice to say those attending the tattoo show’s grand finale party on Sunday – yes, God doesn’t rest in Las Vegas – won’t be making it into the office first thing Monday morning: Dave Navarro is hosting the event, while DJ Skribble and DJ Slynkee will also contribute to the soundtrack.

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Huge Night of Rock ‘n’ Roll in Las Vegas on Oct. 2 – “Slash & Friends”

Velvet Revolver/ex-Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash has just revealed a huge lineup of musicians who will join him for his all-star concert in Las Vegas on October 2. Slash

The concert, billed “Slash & Friends”, celebrates the 20th anniversary of Las Vegas hotel, casino and white tiger playground the Mirage.

According to Slash, the “house band” for the Mirage gig will consist of:

* Tommy Clufetos (Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent) – Drums
* Johnny Griparic (Slash’s Snakepit) – Bass
* Ted “Zig Zag” Andreadis (Guns N’ Roses) – Keyboards
* John 5 (Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson) – Guitar
* Slash – Guitar
* Franky Perez (Scars on Broadway) – Vocals

Slash’s special guests that night are “more or less in this order”:

* Rocco Deluca (The Burden)
* Nicole Scherzinger (Pussycat Dolls)
* Courtney Love (Hole)
* Rick Nielsen (Cheap Trick)
* Robin Zander (Cheap Trick)
* Joe Perry (Aerosmith)

Slash says, “Matt Sorum [Velvet Revolver, ex-Guns N’ Roses] is [also] jamming a couple songs, plus there will be some other surprises. I also just got confirmation that the Joe Perry Project is playing as well, [so] it promises to be a bitchin’ evening.”

Slash has spent the last few months recording material for his forthcoming solo album, which will be released under the “Slash & Friends” banner. He says, “the [record] is in its mixing stage and the mixes to this point sound great. We have recorded 18 songs, with one more I want to track in the next couple weeks.” He adds, “the record is still slated for a February/March release.”

Slash tracked most of the CD with former Nine Inch Nails drummer Josh Freese and ex-Jane’s Addiction bassist Chris Chaney. Confirmed guest singers so far include Ozzy Osbourne, Avenged Sevenfold’s M. Shadows and Chris Cornell (Soundgarden, Audioslave). The CD was produced by Eric Valentine (Good Charlotte, Queens of the Stone Age) and features additional appearances by ex-Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea and former Nirvana drummer and current Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl.

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B.B. King Brings Thrilling Blues Club to Las Vegas

BBKingThe “Thrill is Gone” no longer as the King of Blues brings his popular restaurant, bar and nightlife venue, B.B. King’s Blues Club, to Las Vegas. The namesake that made Lucille famous is set to open winter 2009 at The Mirage.   With very few blues clubs in Las Vegas, this club will be a welcome addition.

From early morning to late night, B.B. King’s Blues Club will serve the best in Creole cuisine fused with that southern comfort touch. Palates of Las Vegas visitors and locals alike are sure to be awakened by signature items such as Fried Dill Pickles, Gumbo Ya Ya Straight from the Bayou, Lip Smacking Ribs, Southern Fried Catfish and Banana Bread Pudding.   

And it doesn’t stop with the food- the drink concoctions are just as tasty and full of soul – from the Boll Weevil that’s sure to pack a punch to the Wang Dang Doodle that the women will love. 

It is an all-in-one experience as B.B. King’s Blues Club offers music seven nights a week from funky and fast to soulful and smooth. Come for dinner and experience the tunes that emanate from the in-room stage. As the night progresses, so will the tunes as guests turn to the dance floor to dance the night away. The house bands at B.B. King’s Blues Club surpass the standard of what many know to be a house band, and friends of the King are likely to stop by at any time to join them and jam the night away. 

B.B. King’s Blues Club at The Mirage will be located across from The Beatles Revolution Lounge and next to Samba Brazilian Steakhouse. The 558-seat venue will feature four bars; one outside looking into the club and three inside, all with great views of the stage and entertainment. The restaurant will serve breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night dining; open until 2 a.m. on weekdays and 4 a.m. on weekends or until the last man (or woman) is left standing. The signature retail section of the famed blues club will be open all hours for patrons to take home some soul, including T-shirts, glassware, guitar picks and more. For more information: www.bbkingclubs.com

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Michael Jackson’s Ties to Las Vegas

Although Michael Jackson never performed a ticketed show in Las Vegas during his adult career, he had a high profile in the city and was a frequent visitor and sometimes resident in the recent years. MichaelJacksondeath

A teenage Jackson and his brother performed on the Las Vegas Strip as the Jackson 5, starting in April 1974 at the original MGM Grand (now Bally’s).  They performed several times that year. 

The King of Pop was also a guest for long stretches in the poolside villas of The Mirage during the ‘90s, when his friend Steve Wynn was the hotel chairman. 

The closest Jackson came to a ticketed performance in Las Vegas was in February 1994, when “The Jackson Family Honors” was taped in front of a live audience at the MGM Grand Garden arena for an NBC special.   The crowd screamed and cheered so much when Jackson came onstage that it took several minutes for him to be able to continue with his presentation, with his longtime friend and confidante Elizabeth Taylor finally quieting the crowd. 

Jackson started turning up more frequently in Las Vegas beginning in 2002.  He received the key to Las Vegas from Mayor Oscar Goodman in October 2003, and lived in Las Vegas with his children during a six-month stretch in 2007.  

On and off during the past decade he lived in Las Vegas in a Spanish Trails mansion owned by the Prince of Brunei, a home on West Palomino Lane (near Wasden Elementary School), and a rented house just west of Decatur Boulevard near Sahara Avenue. 

It is not immediately known how recently he lived in Las Vegas, but CNN reported he relocated from the Las Vegas to Los Angeles in May. 

During the filming of a controversial British documentary that aired in 2003, journalist Martin Bashir followed Jackson on shopping sprees around Las Vegas. 

Jackson created a media circus on November 20, 2003, when he returned to Las Vegas from Santa Barbara, California after posting his $3 million bail following charges of child molestation.  A slow-speed car chase ensued in the evening as local and national media followed from the air and ground Jackson’s Lincoln Navigator as it wandered the streets of Las Vegas and Henderson. 

Jackson stayed during that period at Green Valley Ranch and the Ritz-Carlton at Lake Las Vegas before moving back to California to await his trial.   After being exonerated in June 2005, he left the United States for 18 months, spending time between Dubai and Ireland, before flying to Las Vegas on Christmas Eve 2006 with his children. 

He ended his stay in Las Vegas in June 2007, leaving a Summerlin rental home in filthy shambles, with piles of junk left on the curb in his wake. 

During his stay in Las Vegas, Jackson and his children were often spotted at local shows and attractions, fueling reports that Jackson three years ago was pursuing a Celine Dion-type residency on the Strip.  Eventually, Steve Wynn, chairman of Wynn Resorts, had to issue an official denial of any plans to host Jackson in June 2005. 

In December 2008, Jackson was bailed out of the $24.5 million he owned on Neverland Ranch in California when Colony Capital, owned by billionaire Tom Barrack, bought the loan that also owns the Las Vegas Hilton.  That fueled speculation that Jackson would perform in La s Vegas to pay off the debt. 

The Wall Street Journal reported the possible tribute show at the Hilton similar to Cirque du Soleil’s Beatles show “Love” at The Mirage in Las Vegas.   Although talks and dinner meetings ensued with potential promoters, his “This is It” tour ended up planned in London. 

He was rumored to be a possible headliner at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace. AEG Live, which books the Colosseum, said only that Jackson’s performance in London there would be judged for viability before discussing plans to bring him to Las Vegas. 

About a year and a half ago, Jackson resided and recorded at the Studio at the Palms Casino & Hotel in Las Vegas for two months, with Akon and RedOne producing.  Some of the material appeared on the 25th anniversary of his “Thriller” album, released last year.  It is not known how much more his work recorded there remains unreleased or the future of it.

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Stevie D Keeps on Ticking in Las Vegas, Launching Sugar Factory Store

Still calling Las Vegas “Tinseltown?”  Pshaw!  C’mon, get with the times!  A-list celebrities are now calling it Candyland!  And that’s real good news for its Lollipop Creator. 

Nightclub czar Steve “Stevie D” Davidovici of prior Pure nightclub fame in Las Vegas keeps on ticking, not missing one sweet, ever licking beat.  Fresh from his opening of his ultra-trendy Griffin nightclub in Manhattan (reported by Las Vegas Backstage Access on May 14), he’s now feverishly planning his opening of the first bricks-and-mortar Sugar Factory in Las Vegas at the Mirage next to Rhumbar, supposedly with a grand opening party planned for June 26. 

The hip couture candy and lollipop store in Las Vegas will assuredly be frequented by the who’s who of celebritydom. 

[For more information on the online edition of Sugar Factory, please read the June 6 Las Vegas Backstage Access article.]

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Animal Rights Groups Fighting Mad Over Dolphin Acquisitions at The Mirage in Las Vegas

As reported on by Las Vegas Backstage Access on June 7, the dolphin named Sgt. Pepper died on June 4 at The Mirage from complications from a lung infection. 

Now we learn that two days before the death, two animal rights groups, Born Free USA and The World Society for the Protection of Animals, filed a legal complaint against The Mirage’s petition to request to import two more dolphins for the Las Vegas resort’s habitat. 

On April 15, The Mirage placed an application with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service to import two captive Atlantic bottlenose dolphins form Bermuda for breeding purposes. 

The filed complaint alleges more dolphins shouldn’t be brought in because other dolphins had died in the past at the habitat, which the two groups claim is being used as a money-making enterprise rather than for educational or conservation purposes, as The Mirage contends.

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Dolphin Dies at The Mirage in Las Vegas

Sgt. Pepper, born on June 8, 2008 at The Mirage, one of six dolphins at Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat in Las Vegas died on June 4 from complications arising from a lung affection.  The dolphin is the 14th to die at the educational attraction since it opened at The Mirage in 1990. 

Animal welfare advocates have long voiced their concerns that dolphins are not suited for such public displays, and that the exhibit’s confines are inadequate when compared to the natural habitat of the ocean.

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Crazy Pool Parties in Las Vegas

It’s that time of the year to temporarily cast worries and responsibilities aside and have some fun in the sun in Las Vegas.   Here’s a listing of major Las Vegas pool parties: poolparties

Rehab at the Hard Rock Hotel.  Every Sunday through September from 11 a.m. to sunset at 4455 Paradise Road.  DJs and celebs galore perform and mingle with ordinary folk.  Cover costs could vary depending on special events, but generally $20 for women, $40 for men.  Local women get in free.  Cabanas by reservation, 702-693-5555 

Ditch Fridays at the Palms.  On Friday from noon to 7 p.m. plan to skip work and really have fun at 4321 W. Flamingo Road.  In addition to offering cabanas and daybeds, a variety of special events are on tap through the season, including concert and DJs.  Admission is $25 for men.  All women get in free.  Cabanas by reservation, 702-938-9999 

Sapphire Pool at the Rio.  This pool is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 3700 W. Flamingo Road.  Admission for men is $30 Sunday through Thursday, $50 Fridays and Saturdays, and $60 on holidays.  Local women receive free admission and local men receive half-off admission with valid ID.  Cabanas by reservation.  702-777-7709 

Bare at The Mirage.  Bare is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.  It’s a European-style sunbathing venue, featuring the typical pool party amenities and music.   Asset Thursdays are for locals, targeting workers in the hospitality industry.  On Sunday, they host a backyard barbecue with local guests receiving complimentary grilled faire.  Admission Monday through Thursdays is $10 for women, $20 for men.  On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, admission is $20 for women and $40 for men.  Local women receive free admission with valid ID; local men receive complimentary admission on Sundays through Thursday.  Cabana reservations, 702-791-7442 

Daydream at M Resort.  Daydream is open form 11 a.m. until 7 p.m. Thursdays through Mondays at 12300 Las Vegas Blvd. South (actually in Henderson, not Las Vegas.)  Local women receive free admission with valid ID; all other women pay $10, while all men pay $20.   Mondays and Thursdays are Daydream’s industry days.  Themes vary, from free facials to free gift bag giveaways.  www.daydreamlv.com

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Terry Fator’s Quantum Las Vegas Leap

Just three years ago Terry Fator was giving a performance at a fair near Houston, Texas to an audience of one.   He considered walking away from show business but made a fateful decision to audition one more time and after winningterryfator2 the second season of America’s Got Talent, Fator has stopped wondering whether he’s in the right profession. 

Fator has signed a five-year contract to perform nightly at The Mirage Casino and Resort in Las Vegas. He is replacing Danny Gans, who has moved to Steve Wynn’s Encore, and will be presenting his show at the Terry Fator Theatre. 

But if the ventriloquist act isn’t exactly what you’re looking for, take a look at the artists who are working the room on the nights that Winston the Impersonating Turtle is taking a break.   Ray Ramono and Brad Garrett, Ron White and Lewis Black will all give it a whirl in the Terry Fator Theatre in 2009. 

Don’t  count out the entertainment value of a night with Fator and company:   “I look at myself as a talk show host and the characters are my guests,” says Fator. “I can guarantee anyone who comes to my show, within a second or two, will feel that the puppet is the real entity.”

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Las Vegas’ Newest Headliner: Terry Fator at The Mirage

Terry Fator, 43, has come a long way.   The “America’s Got Talent” impressionist, singer, comedian, and ventriloquist went on from winning that competition in 2007 to land a five-year, $100 million deal The Mirage in Las Vegas, with an option for an additional five years.  terryfator1

“When I won Talent, my wife and I were broke,” says Fator, who has a new autobiography, “Who’s the Dummy Now.”  “Now I have to convince her that she doesn’t have to buy shoes at discount stores.”

Fator is the newest headliner at The Mirage.  His performances start today, Saturday, February 14, at the helm of the 1,265-seat Terry Fator Theatre (formerly the Danny Gans Theatre) for five shows a week.

Fator’s show is family-friendly and features a cast of seven puppets, including Cowboy Walter, Emma Taylor and Winston the Impersonating Turtle. Combining ventriloquism and impersonation, Fator performs the singing styles of an eclectic group of stars including Elvis, Maroon Five, James Blunt, Tony Bennett, Garth Brooks, Etta James, Marvin Gaye, Nat King Cole and his daughter Natalie.

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Las Vegas Says Good-Bye Simultaneously to Three Shows; More Musical Chairs

For those of us living in or visiting Las Vegas to enjoy the theatrical shows, our hearts sunk in a collective sigh of sadness as the 30 cast members from Mandalay Bay’s six-year-old “Mamma Mia” show on mammamiaSunday night took their final curtain calls to a standing and cheering ovation crowd that called it a night to their legacy of 2,200-plus shows and 2 million ticket buyers. 

stompoutloudAnd, if that’s not enough melancholy for one weekend, down the Strip at Planet Hollywood fans were stomping their feet and clapping their hands, appreciative that they were able to see the final act of the 22-month-run of “Stomp Out Loud.”

Then, for this weekend’s final coup de grace, over at the Sahara, the dance revue “Raw Talent Live” packed in the fans in to see their final performance.  By any standards, “Mamma Mia” and “Stomp Out Loud” were long-running and very well received shows, but especially so in Las Vegas, a city that continually evolves and change is the order of the day. 

But these final acts in Las Vegas may not necessarily over.  Word is that “Stomp Out Loud” may still have some life remaining, working on a potential move to the Sahara.  And “Raw Talent Live” may also be involved in the musical chair move, adopting individual cabaret acts from “Raw Talent Live” this spring at a new laser-light nightclub opening at the Palazzo.  

It appears for “Mamma Mia” the end is final.  But before the actors’ footprints were even removed from the stage floor, today the “Mamma Mia” space is starting to be transformed into hosting the Broadway hit “The Lion King,” which is planning for their preview performances on April 20.   

Also, “Peepshow,” billed as a “modern burlesque” and that plans to feature Spice Girl Mel B. and “Dancing With the Stars” champion Kelly Monaco, is making ready for its gala opening at Planet Hollywood on March 30.

Impressionist Danny Gans from Mirage fame, is getting into the musical chair act, moving into Wynn’s Encore on February 10 in the space that formerly played host to “Spamalot.”  And, in case you’re wondering, ventriloquist Terry Fator will take over Gans’ former Mirage haunts.

And last, but not, er…,well, maybe still last is Criss Angel’s “Believe,” which starting on January 7 will mysteriously going dark at the Luxor through January 22 for a much needed Cirque du Soleil “magical” revamping. 

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Daredevils’ Fly Las Vegas New Year’s Sky

Some may think it wasn’t as impressive as the descent of the flying Elvi, but many visitors to Las Vegasrobbiemaddisonmotocyclejpeg on New Year’s Eve 2009 chose to line the spectator viewing area’s of two different motorcycle jump exhibitions.

Las Vegas once again offered Red Bull motorcycle rider Robbie Maddison on a ramp to New Year’s revelers.  In 2008 Maddison broke the Guinness World Record with a jump that was longer than a football field at the Rio Hotel.  But in 2009 it was the vertical distance that proved a challenge.  As part of an ESPN presentation,  Maddison jumped his motorcycle to the top of the Arc de Triomphe in front of the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas.  He launched his bike 120 feet up in the air to land on the Arc, took a moment to enjoy the view, and then came back via a 50-foot free fall drop to his landing ramp.

The crowd at the no-charge event went wild with their oohs and aahs, thrilled to have the opportunity to see Maddison in action.

robbieknieveljpeg1But that was quite a different feeling from the fans up the Strip at the Mirage, where 46-year-old Robbie Knievel had just set up his ramps for his motorcycle jump.  His motorcycle jump attempt came exactly 41 years after Knievel’s father, Evel Knievel, broke most of the bones in his body with a jump at Caesars Palace that went bad.

It was originally reported that Knievel would ride through the volcano flames in a televised event for FOX.   However, after a lengthy delay, when the final jump occurred, the ramps were actually set up in front of the volcano and the burst of flames was just pretty scenery, instead of being a formidable obstacle for the bike and rider.

As the fans disbursed there were some who wished they’d spent their evening more towards the South end of the Strip.  But Vegas has a way of making even the mundane fun and the story will last longer than the video will.  Besides, there’s always next year.

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