Curtain Up: AEG takes the Joint, ‘Blanc de Blanc’ hits SLS and more

Vegas News
Blanc de Blanc

Pamela Raith Photography

Blanc de Blanc” opens soon at SLS Las Vegas.

Thursday, July 11, 2019 | 2 a.m.

AEG Presents passed the torch to Live Nation earlier this year in regards to booking and operating the Colosseum at Caesars Palace, but now the global live music company that produces and promotes more than 11,000 shows annually has another iconic Vegas room under its control. AEG and JC Hospitality LLC, owner of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino just east of the Las Vegas Strip, announced a new agreement on Monday that has AEG managing, operating and booking the Joint beginning in the fall of 2020, when the 24-year-old property will be re-opening after a big renovation and re-branded as Virgin Hotels Las Vegas.

“AEG Presents has been an integral part of the Joint’s success for over a decade,” said Richard “Boz” Bosworth, president and CEO of JC Hospitality. “AEG further expands on our commitment to partner with best-in-class operators for the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas transformation.”

Among the countless artists whose shows have been placed at the Joint over a 12-year collaboration with AEG are Nine Inch Nails, Imagine Dragons, Paul McCartney, the Killers and Drake. The 4,500-capacity venue has also hosted AEG residency shows from Carlos Santana, Guns N’ Roses, Def Leppard, KISS, Journey and more. The original Joint opened in 1995 and the venue was renovated and relocated in 2009. Upcoming performances there include Cedric The Entertainer on July 27, Mary J. Blige on August 16 and 17 and Brian Wilson and the Zombies on August 31. “From a sound and sightline perspective, the Joint is already one of the best concert venues not just in Las Vegas, but anywhere. And now JC Hospitality and AEG Presents will be improving the venue even further,” said Shaw Trell, COO at AEG.

A long-rumored new show at a different renovating property has been officially announced: Cabaret show “Blanc de Blanc” will make its Las Vegas debut August 16 at the Foundry at SLS. The resort recently announced it’s rebranding to Sahara Las Vegas in the fall of this year and other new entertainment offerings are expected, but “Blanc de Blanc,” from Australia’s Strut & Fret Production House, is the first step. The production combines “vintage glamour and high-end spectacle with theater, circus and aerial performances,” according to Wednesday’s announcement. It’s created and directed by Scott Maidment and choreographed by Kevin Maher with costumes by James Browne, music by Kenneth Bager and lighting and set design by Philip Gladwell. “Guests not only come to be entertained and take in the spectacle of ‘Blanc de Blanc,’ they become part of the party,” said Meruelo Entertainment President Jeff Henry, who also operates entertainment at sister property Grand Sierra in Reno. “This show perfectly encapsulates the unique, unexpected experience we are creating as we renovate the resort.” It will perform at 7 p.m. Thursday through Monday with additional 9:30 p.m. shows on Saturday and tickets, now on sale, range from $49 to $129.

The San Diego Comic Con crowd is getting a sneak peek of Cirque du Soleil’s new show “R.U.N” next week at the annual Fandom Party at Float at the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego’s Gaslamp District. The highly anticipated action thriller is set to premiere at Luxor in October, but Fandom Party attendees will get a special glimpse of one of its acts on July 18, conceived by director Michael Schwandt and creative director Stefan Miljevic as well as a live musical performance by “R.U.N” composer Tyler Bates, known for his action and horror movie scores.

I missed the announcement of two new shows at Cleopatra’s Barge when I was gone on vacation last week: Dionne Warwick slides over to the iconic Caesars Palace lounge in September after a recent run at Bally’s Jubilee Theater and up-and-comer Daniel Emmet will sing for a six-night engagement between August 25 and September 23. Tickets are on sale now for both shows. Warwick, who won the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award earlier this year, is on the Barge’s books for a multitude of dates September through November and January into March. Emmet, who you’ve seen on “America’s Got Talent,” has performed in this room before as part of the opening cast of “The Cocktail Cabaret.”

First it was a monster extension for “Thunder From Down Under” at the Excalibur and now it’s time for another Aussie favorite to sign on for a longer run. “The Australian Bee Gees Show” will be performing at the Excalibur for at least three more years, announced Wednesday, after a very healthy eight-year stay at the castle. Like “Thunder,” “Bee Gees” will relaunch this month in the renovated Thunderland Showroom as a bigger and better disco extravaganza. Both shows are produced by SPI Entertainment. “The Australian Bee Gees Show” has toured for the past 24 years to more than 55 countries and performed for millions of fans worldwide.

“The Princess Wendy Late Night Tease Room” opens July 19 and will be performed at 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays at The Attic stage at the Nerd, located downtown at Neonopolis. Expect a raucous evening of comedy, burlesque and sexy circus acts from a rotating cast of characters in an anything-goes playhouse environment. The show was conceived by husband-and-wife team Matthew Morgan and Heidi Brucker Morgan, who operate the Shotspeare theater company.

“Opium” is out of this world and as such, it’s celebrating the 50th anniversary of man’s first steps on the moon with $50 tickets (plus taxes and fees) to performances through October 6. If you’re ready to save some money on your hilarious space voyage at the Cosmopolitan, use the code “MOON50” when you’re checking out at spiegelworld.com/opium. Purchases must be made July 15-20 and the offer is subject to availability.

Shania Twain’s upcoming “Let’s Go” residency show will follow in the footsteps of other recent Zappos Theater productions by contributing to charity. Exclusive ticket packages including front row seats and more are now available at ifonly.com/Shania with proceeds benefitting Shania Kids Can, a program founded in 2010 and launched in Las Vegas in 2013 that promotes positive change in children’s lives through academic support, group activities and more. And one dollar from every ticket purchased to Twain’s Vegas shows at Planet Hollywood will be donated to SKC. “Let’s Go” opens on December 6.

Before Shania, there will be Def Leppard at Zappos Theater, opening August 14. The British rockers are bringing some extras to their Planet Hollywood show and one complementary element is an art exhibit called “Legends & Dreams” by drummer (and painter) Rick Allen. His latest collection will be on display August 14 through September 7 on the balcony inside the concert venue as well as outside the theater in the Zappos store. A portion of proceeds from each sale will be donated to Project Resiliency’s Warrior Resiliency Program, sponsored by Allen’s Raven Drum Foundation. Allen’s art can also be found across the country at Wentworth Gallery locations.

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