The Park Theater is striving to be the king of Las Vegas Strip venues.
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Queen has been recruited to make it happen.
Continuing its aggressive campaign to bring in top rockers this year, the 5,200-seat theater at Monte Carlo is reportedly ready to stage Queen with Adam Lambert. The Queen-Park Theater engagement is reportedly a partnership between MGM Resorts International and concert promoter Live Nation. Queen and Lambert are certainly available for such a run — the band has no dates on the schedule after a July 4 booking at O2 Arena in London, which tops off its European tour.
Queen and Lambert sold out T-Mobile Arena on June 27. It was the most entertaining arena show I saw in all of 2017, and immediately started poking around for news about the band’s interest in an extended engagement on the Strip. Be confident Queen will open sometime in August, and no later than mid-September.
Elsewhere on the Park Theater calendar, Lady Gaga’s planned residency at the theater, set to begin in December, remains unchanged even as she was forced to cancel the final 10 dates of her Joanne World Tour. Her reps announced those spiked shows on Feb. 3, citing “severe pain that has materially impacted her ability to perform live.”
But there has been no indication that Gaga’s health concerns will preclude her highly anticipated, two-year run on the Strip, covering between at least 36, and as many as 70, performances through 2020.
Long-term, Britney Spears is expected to return to Strip residency at The Park in 2019, following a world tour that starts this summer at The Theater at MGM National Harbor in Washington — and that partnership is a strong indication that Spears is already committed to the MGM Grand’s theater on the Strip. Spears ended her four-year run at Axis theater at Planet Hollywood with a record-setting performance on New Year’s Eve.
This transmission from our Rampant Buffoonery Bureau …
A fan threw a strand of what appeared to be Mardi Gras beads at Elton John on Wednesday night, hitting the rock legend full in the face as he performed, “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting.”
The incident unfolded during the stretch of Sir Elton’s show when he allows audience members in the first five rows at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace to flood the stage and surround his piano.
As an eyewitness to the episode explained during a phone chat Saturday morning, the bead-bearing bonehead was seated in the second row, middle section, on the aisle. About three songs before John launched “Saturday Night,” this person approached the stage with the strand in his hands, as if looking for an opening to throw them toward the band. He later joined the party scene around the piano, and as a video posted by TMZ shows, hit John with such velocity that the knighted entertainment icon stopped singing for about 30 seconds to check if he had any marks on his face.
At this writing, there has been no word from Caesars Entertainment PR reps as to what, if any, punishment was leveled against this guy other than escorting him from the venue. The audience member I spoke with told me he saw the bead slinger hanging out in the casino, a half-hour after the show. John posted a far happier moment on his Instagram page on Friday night, showing his son, Elijah, joining him on the piano bench, with the message, “Elijah joins daddy for the encore.”
My friend and colleague Robin Leach continues his rehabilitation from a mini-stroke he suffered last November. He is at Select Specialty Hospital in Cleveland, near the Cleveland Clinic. Next week his family and medical team will decide whether to continue aggressive rehab at that hospital or return him to Las Vegas for further treatment. Leach, whose right side was originally weakened after the Nov. 20 episode in Cabo San Lucas, is working on strengthening his hands and feet and returning to full speech.
Bettie Page haps
A couple of projects to watch for in VegasVille are “Marilyn: A New Musical,” and a Bettie Page original musical, both set to open later this year in Caesars Entertainment venues. Prospect House Entertainment Chief Executive Officer Tegan Summer has been at work building his teams for both shows.
Lindsay Roginski, the wonderfully voiced co-star of “Steve Wynn’s Showstoppers” at Wynn Las Vegas, has signed on to play Jane Russell in the “Marilyn” production. Roginski soared in the show’s “Cell Block Tango” number, one of the many highlights in the production at Encore Theater.
And, this week Summer signed Sabina Kelley as a creative consultant for the Page musical.
Kelley, known as an international pinup model, is also a former dancer in “Jubilee” at Bally’s, guest headliner in “Pin Up” at Stratospehere, and a judge on the Oxygen reality series “Best Ink.” She moved to Australia in 2016, returning to VegasVille with her family in December to explore career options. She’s shown fortuitous timing with Summer’s project, which is licensed by the Page estate with a script and original music written by Summer himself. The cast should be impressive, too; those with whom Summer is in talks are among the best of the best in Vegas.