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Why the Golden Knights chose a siren to fire up T-Mobile Arena

Updated April 29, 2024 - 11:04 am

This prop is the bomb. Or close to it.

We speak of the siren used by the Vegas Golden Knights. The cherry-red sound device is meant to energize the crowd at T-Mobile Arena. But it was used in an even more urgent capacity decades ago, as part of Las Vegas history.

“The reason why we have an air-raid or siren is to call back the days of the atomic bomb testings in Vegas,” Golden Knights VP and Executive Producer of Entertainment and Production Andrew Abrams says. “We like to have a ‘why’ for a lot of the stuff we do. That was one from very early in Year One. We wanted a fan moment, and that’s what we landed on.”

For those uninitiated, the siren is cranked from the top of The Fortress, in front of the Castle on T-Mobile Arena’s upper level. Guest crankers are brought in before the first, second and third periods. The siren has blared nearly 2,000 times since the team’s inaugural season in 2017.

The folks who crank the siren might seem randomly selected, but there is a strategy. International celebs are usually brought in for the first crank, opening the game. A season-ticket holder usually cranks before the second period. A community figure or local Vegas entertainer cranks before the third period.

A list of 10 top star crankers, alphabetically presented:

1. Paul Anka

2. Backstreet Boys

3. Carrot Top

4. Billy Gibbons

5. Lil Jon

6. Miranda Lambert

7. Wayne Newton

8. Shania Twain

9. Usher

10. Mark Wahlberg

This season, the list of crankers includes hoops legend Spencer Haywood, Vegas rocker Frankie Sidoris (who wrote the team’s theme song, “GKG,” for Go Knights Go), Piff the Magic Dragon, UFC great Frank Mir and Make-A-Wish ambassador Anabelle Hanson.

The cranking will continue throughout the VGK playoff run, no matter the length (the NHL becomes more involved in the in-game entertainment during the Stanley Cup Final, no matter the participants).

Abrams says the entertainment team is fully prepped for new production elements in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Golden Knights host the Dallas Stars on Saturday.

“The playoffs definitely are the most fun time of year for our group. It’s when you have to accomplish more in less time, so we don’t have the option to doubt ourselves or overthink,” Abrams says. “We just come up with a plan and we execute, and we think the fans are gonna really going to like what we have in store for them for round one. All I can say it’ll be a noticeable change, a cool thing that fans will will be able to see and enjoy.”

Though not formally decided, Abrams says the team plans to return its anthem tandem of Carnell “Golden Pipes” Johnson and Lynnae Meyers. “Golden Pipes” sings the U.S. anthem, Meyers the Canadian rendition.

“We haven’t had the summer, are-you-coming-back talk yet but, but Carnell is our main person and Lynnae does a great job,” Abrams says. “In the hockey world, routine is king. We try not to mess with that.”

‘Vegas, Baby’

In a moment where film legend meets VegasVille, Vince Vaughn of “Swingers” fame was at Encore’s Eastside Lounge on Wednesday and Thursday for some dueling-pianos action. He and running mate/comic Steve Byrne high-fived, fist-bumped and grooved a bit. Very nice to the commoners. That show is a scene, headed up Chris Lash and Adam Saxe on Wednesday, Lash and David James on Thursday.

Painter’s work is done

“Mad Apple” at New York-New York creator Simon Painter has left the company. This move is evident in a bounce-back message to Painter’s Cirque e-mail message stating, “Hello, We wish to inform you that Simon Painter is no longer working at Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group …”

Painter evidently left the company this month, some five years after his company The Works was acquired by Cirque.

Painter has been consulted by the production on an “as-needed” basis since the show opened in May 2022. “Mad Apple” has filled the bill as the show replacing the popular-yet-expensive “Zumanity” in that theater.

Painter, a former fiddle player in “Spirit of the Dance,” is co-producer of the under-development “Game of Thrones” stage show, which is seeking a theater on Broadway and aren’t we all …

Tease this …

Hearing reliably that drag star Eureka O’Hara is slated to be the diva in Spiegelworld’s “DiscoShow” at Linq Hotel. Not announced, but this deal is done.

O’Hara has been featured in “Ru Paul’s Drag Race Live” at Flamingo since January 2022. Upon joining “Ru Paul” Vegas cast, O’Hara stated, “My thoughts coming in — my thoughts, my thoughts, my thoughts! — my thoughts are scrambled. They’re everywhere. They’re all over the place. It’s so much work and so hard. So many rehearsals. So many costumes and rhinestones.”

And dance moves, for this show, which opens July 27 at what was once the Imperial Palace sports book.

Cool Hang Alert

“The Kat Pack,” a title and a show to support, plays Silver Sevens Showroom from 7-8:30 p.m. Saturday. Revisit the original Rat Pack vibe, as evoked by co-stars Yvette Clutterbuck, Jacqueline Holland Wright and Cherity Harchis. The show is in the room’s dinner-show experiences lineup. Go to eventbrite.com for intel and to book.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on X, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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