Wondering if crowds will be up for ‘Surf’

The ’80s-themed Broadway hit “Rock of Ages” is all but certain to be headed to the Strip. But its director gets a jump on herself with a new project that will debut at Planet Hollywood Resort.

“Surf the Musical” is what they call a “jukebox musical,” stitching the hits of the Beach Boys into a theatrical story. It has a “soft” opening June 11 and an official media premiere July 17.

There’s a bit of deja vu here for director Kristin Hanggi, as “Rock of Ages” played a week at the Flamingo Las Vegas in 2006, as part of its journey to Broadway three years later.

“A new musical is such that … every time you create one it’s like its own animal,” Hanggi says. “They each have their own path. You have to listen to your show and it will tell you what to do with it.”

But this path is surprising for a couple of reasons. For one, somebody already tried a Beach Boys musical, “Good Vibrations,” and it ran for only 94 Broadway performances in 2005.

Even more surprising on the local front is the dice-rolling on a new, unproven title, even a heavily branded one. Las Vegas hasn’t proved itself to be overly welcoming as a development ground for new works.

To cite perhaps the most relevant example: The Queen jukebox musical “We Will Rock You” had its U.S. debut at Paris Las Vegas, then withered on the vine for a year and change.

But the jukebox structure might be all the two titles have in common, especially if audiences simply like “Surf” better than they liked “Rock You.”

“I really do believe that at the end of the day everything is word of mouth,” Hanggi says. “If you don’t get somebody walking out going, ‘That was great, I’m going to tell everybody about it,’ I don’t know how anything really works except for that.”

Primary producer J. Burton Gold is not otherwise involved with show business, but after attending a Beach Boys concert made it “his mission to bring this to life,” Hanggi says.

The creative team is heavy with Broadway credentials, and the stage design will feature large-scale use of liquid-crystal display screens for an authentic beach vibe in the ’60s-themed musical, which Hanggi describes as “half summer vacation – with an iPod full of Beach Boys tunes – and half theater.”

The Planet Hollywood theater is operated by Base Entertainment, which also is involved in the rumored deal for “Rock of Ages” at The Venetian after the Blue Man Group moves to the Monte Carlo and the Tom Cruise movie version opens this summer.

However, the two musicals are otherwise separately financed ventures, with Base not invested in “Surf” beyond its landlord status. …

If “Rock” seems all but a lock for The Venetian, published reports elsewhere of “Book of Mormon” landing there for an extended run seem premature at best.

Broadway is a relatively small community, and some of those involved in The Venetian’s “Phantom” who would be looking for work after that show closes have been told not to count on a sit-down version of “Mormon.” …

Whoa! That kid from “Blossom” has grown up. Joey Lawrence, now 36, will be the next celebrity host of the Chippendales revue at the Rio. His stint June 7-24 at least catches the ad campaign for “Magic Mike,” the Channing Tatum flick about the life of male strippers hitting theaters June 29. …

Cheaper than a movie (in 3-D at least): Gerry McCambridge, aka “The Mentalist,” celebrates seven years in Las Vegas this week, offering locals $7 tickets – before fees and taxes – through Sunday. The price is only good for walk-up business, not advance purchases. …

Here’s a trade: Male strippers for reanimated corpses. The campy “Evil Dead: The Musical,” originally bound for the Plaza, will instead go to the V Theater in the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood Resort. It opens June 22 to run on Friday and Saturday late shows.

In exchange, the male revue “American Storm” moved from the V Theater to the Plaza’s main showroom last week. It’s somewhat coincidental; the departure created space for a weekend show at the V, but “Storm” went into the main showroom, not the smaller upstairs theater originally earmarked for “Dead,” an off-Broadway title based on the cult movie franchise.

“In our town, tourists ensure longevity,” says producer-director Sirc Michaels, and he believes he can snag more of them on the Strip. And he agrees it can’t hurt that cult director Eli Roth is opening a year-round haunted attraction, the Goreatorium, in an almost-adjacent retail area.

Contact reporter Mike Weatherford at
mweatherford@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0288.

ad-high_impact_4
Entertainment
Jason Aldean talks about the possibility of a Las Vegas residency
Country superstar Jason Aldean discusses his feelings about playing in Las Vegas and says he'd be interested in a Las Vegas residency when the time is right at the iHeart Radio Music Festival in Las Vegas on September 21, 2018.(John Katsilometes/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Block 16 Urban Food Hall Serves Favorite Foods From Across The US
Block 16 Urban Food Hall Serves Favorite Foods From Across The US (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Benny the Skating Dog could be the next Golden Knights on-ice entertainment
Benny the Skating Dog could be the next Golden Knights on-ice entertainment (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Who To Watch At Life Is Beautiful
Life Is Beautiful Setup
Workers preparing Fremont street for this weekend's Life is Beautiful festival, on Wednesday, September 19, 2018. Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal
The 46th annual Greek Food Festival will feed 25,000 people in Las Vegas
Madame Tussauds Has The Newest VR Experience On The Strip
Madame Tussauds Has The Newest VR Experience On The Strip. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Zia Records Move
Zias Records is moving from its Sahara Avenue and Arville Street location to a bigger store. (Mat Luscheck/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Students At The International Contortion Convention In Las Vegas Learn How To Bend And Twist Their Bodies
Students At The International Contortion Convention In Las Vegas Learn How To Bend And Twist Their Bodies. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Video from Fertitta wedding Sep. 1
video from @wedstagrams of Fertitta wedding at Red Rock Resort
You Can Get Vegan Unicorn Toast In Downtown Las Vegas
You Can Get Vegan Unicorn Toast In Downtown Las Vegas (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Five must-see bands at Psycho Las Vegas 2018
Five must-see bands at Psycho Las Vegas 2018
Zuma's Ice Cube Carving Is Satisfying To Watch
Zuma's Ice Cube Carving Is Satisfying To Watch (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Therapy In Downtown Las Vegas Serves Cast Iron S'mores
Therapy In Downtown Las Vegas Serves Cast Iron S'mores. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
New Brunch Spot The Stove Makes Unicorn Hot Chocolate And Bananas Foster Pancakes
New Brunch Spot The Stove Makes Unicorn Hot Chocolate And Bananas Foster Pancakes. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Octopus On The Las Vegas Strip Predicted The Winner Of The World Cup
The Octopus On The Las Vegas Strip Predicted The Winner Of The World Cup. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-journal)
TLC by the Numbers
Watch Ruthless! at Las Vegas Little Theatre
The musical Ruthless! will be playing at Las Vegas Little Theatre from July 13-29. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
How to feel like a kid again in Las Vegas
How to feel like a kid again in Las Vegas
People Lined Up For Over 5 Hours For Build-a-bear's "Pay Your Age" Promotion At Galleria Mall
People Lined Up For Over 5 Hours For Build-a-bear's "Pay Your Age" Promotion At Galleria Mall. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Cadaver art and sword swallowing at The Dark Arts Market
Curator Erin Emrie talks about her inspiration for The Dark Arts Market at Cornish Pasty Co. in Las Vegas Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Over 40,000 People Attend The 4th Of July Parade In Summerlin In Las Vegas
Over 40,000 People Attend The 4th Of July Parade In Summerlin In Las Vegas. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
What to expect at Station Casinos' Fourth of July celebration
Station Casinos' is hosting its annual 4th of July celebration with Fireworks by Grucci. Fireworks scheduled to go off on Wednesday, July 4 around 9 p.m. at Green Valley Ranch Resort, Red Rock Resort, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Pawn Stars' Richard Harrison honored at memorial service
A memorial service was conducted for Richard "Old Man" Harrison at Palm Mortuary in Las Vegas on Sunday, July 1, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Tourists and locals enjoy Independence Day fireworks at Caesars Palace
Hundreds of tourists and locals gaze at the Independence Day fireworks show at Caesars Palace on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
5 must-see bands at Warped Tour 2018
Five must-see bands at Warped Tour 2018
This Banana Split In Las Vegas Is Made With Fire And Liquid Nitrogen Right At Your Table.
This Banana Split In Las Vegas Is Made With Fire And Liquid Nitrogen Right At Your Table. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pixar Pier At Disneyland Is Open With New Food And A New Roller Coaster
Pixar Pier At Disneyland Is Open With New Food And A New Roller Coaster (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Here's What It's Like To Ride The New Incredicoaster At Disneyland
Here's What It's Like To Ride The New Incredicoaster At Disneyland (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
"Pawn Stars" fans visit Richard Harrison's memorial at Gold & Silver Pawn
"Pawn Stars" fans from around the world visit the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas following the passing of Richard "Old Man" Harrison on Monday, June 25, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like