Tag Archives: Stomp Out Loud

Las Vegas Celebrates Abolition of Slavery

The Civil War has long since ended and slaves freed, but the spirit of the historic occasion lives on in Las Vegas during the 9th Annual Juneteenth Festival.  slavery

The national celebration of Juneteenth was precipitated after Union soldiers, lead by Maj. Gen. George Granger, landed in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865 and made a proclamation that the Civil War had ended and the slaves were free– nearly 2 ½ years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. 

Despite the holiday falling into obscurity at the start of the 20th century, as many blacks migrated north and became separated from the roots of the tradition, and early ordinances forbid the celebration of Juneteenth on public property, the celebration has since rapidly gained steam and become a longtime tradition, especially in the South.  Historically, it was celebrated with fishing outings and barbecues on local church grounds. 

Juneteenth is a family-oriented Las Vegas event, including carnival games, art and craft booths, speakers, plenty of vendors hawking their wares, and, what would this festival be if not plenty of barbecued chicken and fried catfish– but no beer.

Scheduled performers include Grammy award-winning singer Najee, the Australian doo-wop group and Imperial Palace headliners Human Nature, “step” group Molodi, comedian and Flamingo headliner George Wallace and the cast members from Stomp Out Loud, who will join Skip Martin, lead singer of the platinum-selling funk-pop super group Kool & The Gang, as the headlining acts for the annual citywide celebration. 

The Las Vegas Juneteenth Festival will conclude today, Saturday, running from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., at the Sammy Davis, Jr. Plaza in Lorenzi Park, located a few blocks west on Washington Avenue past Rancho Boulevard.  Admission is free.

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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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