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Caesars Entertainment cutting back on live entertainment | Las Vegas Review-Journal



Caesars Entertainment cutting back on live entertainment | Las Vegas Review-Journal
The cast of “X Rocks” is shown in rehearsal at T-Mobile Arena prior to the opening of the Metallica concert on Monday, Nov. 26, 2018. (Edison Graff)
Hypnotist Anothony Cools arrives at the Tyler Robinson Foundation’s fourth annual Believer Gala. (Bryan Steffy/WireImage)
Kendra Wilkinson, (R) and Jai Rodriguez perform during “Sex Tips for Straight Women from a Gay Man” on June 8, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Isaac Brekken/Getty Images for WE tv)
“Friends! The Musical Parody” (Gabe Ginsberg)
Kendra Wilkinson and her co-star Jai Rodriguez celebrate the 100th performance of their unique comedy show “Sex Tips for Straight Women from a Gay Man” at Paris Las Vegas.
SPI Entertainment
“Sex Tips for Straight Women from a Gay Man” Scheana Shay and Chester Lockhart
The cast of “X Rocks” is shown in rehearsal at T-Mobile Arena prior to the opening of the Metallica concert on Monday, Nov. 26, 2018. (Edison Graff)

Entertainment professionals in Caesars Entertainment productions who had endured nearly a year and a half of inactivity had hoped this month would signal reopenings of their shows.

Instead, some of those productions are being cut loose.

Caesars is “slimming down” its live entertainment offerings, it revealed in a spate of phone calls with show producers Thursday.

The adult revue “X Rocks” at Bally’s, produced by Matt and Angela Stabile and their Stabile Production collective, is not coming back this year. The show had played the Back Room at Bally’s, across from Buca di Beppo and had been planning to move into a renovated theater this summer or fall.

Bronx Wanderers, which had just moved into a Harrah’s Showroom, has been closed, producer Alan Glist confirmed Thursday. But his company’s “Menopause the Musical” at Harrah’s Cabaret has survived.

The Anthony Cools Experience theater at Paris Las Vegas is also closing, which leaves “Friends! The Musical Parody,” “Sex Tips” and Cools’ own long-running hypnosis show without a venue. Cools, who leases the theater from Caesars Entertainment, has headlined for nearly two decades in Las Vegas.

Caesars Entertainment officials offered no comment Thursday on the developments surrounding its live entertainment, nor has the company formally confirmed these moves. Left open is how the now-closed venues, most of them refurbished convention space or closed restaurants, will be used.

The company plans to issue a news release Friday specifying its plans.

Those who were notified their shows would close were caught off guard by the news.

“It was out of left field,” Glist said. “I was shocked. But I do understand this is a numbers game, and not a personal thing. Everyone at the company loves the show. We should have another venue lined up soon.”

Other producers echoed that thought.

“This isn’t the call I expected, with everything reopening,” said “Friends” producer John Bentham of Ivory Star Productions after a chat with Damian Costa, vice president of entertainment operations at Caesars Entertainment. “We’re the Entertainment Capital of the World. That encompasses small shows, large shows and everything in between. By eliminating these smaller showrooms, you’re eliminating good, affordable, unique shows.”

No question, these decisions effectively shrink the middle-class entertainment options in Las Vegas. Such lower-capacity Caesars Entertainment theaters as the Magic Attic at Bally’s — home to the “Potted Potter” parody, Frederic Da Silva’s “Paranormal” and the magic headliner Xavier Mortimer — and Sin City Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort — home to “Crazy Girls” and the Tenors of Rock tribute show — have all been under review.

The loss of “Crazy Girls,” which opened at the Riviera in 1987, would be nothing short of historic.

An unconfirmed report: Tape Face, co-produced by Bentham’s company, will continue to headline even though his House of Tape theater at Harrah’s might close, too. The comic mime (legal name Sam Wills) has been at Harrah’s Showroom in pandemic reopening and will continue to headline.

The Caesars venues being closed are a lower scale than such venues as the Flamingo Showroom, which is bringing back “Ru Paul’s Drag Race Live!” on Aug. 5, and Harrah’s Showroom. The latter has been Mac King’s home for nearly 20 years (but the great magician’s future won’t be at Harrah’s — believe it). Harrah’s is also where Donny Osmond is burning up the box office for his Aug. 30 opening and where the Righteous Brothers are also expected to return.

A few more certainties: Mat Franco is back at his theater at The Linq Hotel. Wayne Newton is prepping to return to Cleopatra’s Barge at Caesars Palace. Criss Angel is said to be gearing up to be back at his self-named theater at Planet Hollywood, all while Clark County inches toward 100 percent capacity for public gatherings.

The anticipated shuttering of several Caesars Entertainment venues arrives just as the company has been allowed to run its casino floor at 100 percent capacity. The loosening of capacity restrictions was announced Wednesday.

The “X Rocks” cast gained fame as the opening act for Metallica at T-Mobile Arena in November 2018, introduced by comic Jim Breuer. The troupe lit up the venue, which filled to capacity with 20,000 hard rock fans.

The Stabiles say the show will return “100 percent” in 2022. Stabile Production hits Piff the Magic Dragon and the revues “X Burlesque” at the Flamingo and “X Country” at Harrah’s Cabaret are being spared.

“X Country” was the first ticketed production in a Strip hotel-casino to return during COVID-19, on Oct. 22.

Piff has been performing in a socially distanced Flamingo Showroom but typically alternates showtimes with “X Burlesque” in the former Bugsy Cabaret. The venue is named for X Burlesque when that show performs and for Piff when he is onstage.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at Contact him at [email protected] Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

This content was originally published here.

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