Friday, April 25, 2008

This week's Weekly Column

Here's this week's Las Vegas Weekly "The Strip Sense" column, a look in part at why Danny Gans IS a risk for Steve Wynn, and likely a bad one. But the part of the piece that drew Richard Abowitz's attention on his blog today was the look at the risk that Cirque is taking with Criss Angel...

Risks With No Rewards
The Perilous World of Vegas Entertainment


Alrighty! Finally some real action!

After a year of surefire success stories announced for Vegas, from Bette and Cher to the Elvis-themed Cirque du Soleil show, there is finally a sign on two significant fronts that some genuine gambling is going on with Vegas showrooms.

The first piece of news, that Steve Wynn is dumping Spamalot and bringing over Mirage headliner Danny Gans, has been received by most as a sign that the granddaddy of Vegas innovation has given up on experimentation after two successive Broadway flops.

It was cause for fellow Weekly scribe Richard Abowitz to conclude on his LA Times blog that “Vegas is all about playing it safe.” A fellow on my blog commented of Wynn, “It’s like he went out on a limb, took a real risk, retreated to the same-old.” Hunter Hillegas of wrote, “Wynn got burned by Broadway (and an O derivative), so he’s going back to the tried and true.”

But even if that’s how Wynn sees it, he’s actually quite wrong: The Gans move is extremely risky precisely because it is a horrible idea. And you know it’s a huge risk when you consider how likely it is to be a mammoth embarrassment.

Read the rest HERE


ChrisR said...

I don't get Wynn taking Danny Gans. I've always considered Danny as low rent Vegas. Avenue Q and Spamalot, while not blockbusters for Mr Wynn always were a bit of a nice curve and made the Wynn stand out. This signing is horrible and makes the Wynn MORE like it's competitotrs, not less.

Anonymous said...

Sometimes I think all Las Vegas blog posters are elitist snobs. Danny Ganz is a very low overhead show. Very few musicians and stagehands, compared to the Cirque "Cast of Thousands". His show probably cash flows at 35% of capacity. Middle age, middle America still thinks he's really good, and you can only see him in "Vegas"!
Here's the genius of Steve Wynn; I played a new penny machine "Planet Moolah" in Las Vegas last weekend. It was a nickel at Harrah's and MGM properties, but, it was a penny downtown and at Wynn. Next thing I knew, Lisa and I had eaten the $45 each buffet, dropped $300 in the Ferrari store and I was telling Lisa as we left "Man, Wynn sure is in touch with the common man, like me".
Casinos are still in business to make money, aren't they?
Jeff in OKC

Anonymous said...

Some of us Las Vegas bloggERs are elitist snobs, too. Be that as it may, Jeff, Wynn could've built lots of things, but his hallmark is being creative and taking the city to the next level. Does Danny Gans do that?