Viva Las Vegas

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.
sleightofdan
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Viva Las Vegas

Postby sleightofdan » November 4th, 2019, 8:28 am

Heading to Vegas this weekend (Th-Su), and hoping to catch multiple magic shows. Any recommendations?

I plan to see Mac King again, but not Penn & Teller (the talking/magic ratio was a bit off-putting). I loved Copperfield's show as a kid, but am wary of all the recent reviews. And I'm unsure of how the close-up social media celebs (Franco, Shin Lim) would play on a large stage. Then again, I loved David Blaine's show, so I could use some direction. Also open to any lectures or related magic events that happen to be going on

Kevin Williams
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Kevin Williams » November 4th, 2019, 11:02 am

If you check out Vegas.com, look at Shows. Magic shows are listed with dates, availability, and discounted prices.
Enjoy!

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Richard Kaufman » November 4th, 2019, 11:10 am

Copperfield's new show is great.
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Pete McCabe
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Pete McCabe » November 4th, 2019, 3:35 pm

Mac King.

Tom Moore
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Tom Moore » November 5th, 2019, 5:00 am

If you are expecting to see more of "80's rockstar" style copperfield then you will hate his current show because it is the complete antithesis of that and reading between the lines on the negative reviews that has been the crux of their complaint. If you want to see an evening of an absolute master presenting magic and wonder that truely takes advantage of every tool of theatre and magic (rather than straight tricks) then his show is unmissable - the former tagline for the show "an intimate evening of grand illusion" is a very good way to describe the show.

Xavier mortimer is always worth seeing - again its a show full of stuff you just can't see anywhere else.
Hans Klok - Stylistically the complete opposite of modern day Copperfield (Hans is the king of wind machines and pointing at boxes with girls inside) but a good solid show where you see the money. It's almost worth the ticket price just for his montage sequence when he burns through $250k of props in 3 mins.
Cris Angel - a controversial choice because of him personally but if you have no strong negative feelings about him then the show is well worth seeing; there are some genuinely wonderful sequences in the show (Don Wayne worked on the show a couple of years back and you can really see his details in the sequences) and the show is, in terms of production, the biggest magic show you'll see on the strip.
Nathan Burton - It's the stuff you've seen him do on tv but he's absolutely the master of it and his afternoon show is a masterclass.
Mac King - always worth seeing.
Mat Franco - yes it's all close up but it's well done and basically the entire show is him
Shin Lim - if you like his TV stuff you'll love him, if you don't the show won't change your mind. It's actually only 50% him, he shares the show with Colin Cloud the mentalist who's good.
Mike Hamner / Jen Kramer / Murray - all a little "off strip" and playing smaller spaces but good solid shows from good solid performers that are well worth checking out.
Piff - a surprisingly magic-dense show with a lot of work gone in to the details and methods; you can appreciate the show on both a comedic or technical level and still be amazed.

(disclosure - I have been employed to design for some of the above performers)

For non magic - If you're feeling a little crazy then Absinth or Atomic Saloon are amazing experiences. La Reve is a great show. R.U.N if you want to see a car crash on stage
"Ingenious" - Ben Brantley: New York Times

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erdnasephile
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby erdnasephile » November 5th, 2019, 6:16 am

Mr. Moore:
Is there anyone doing true close up any more at any of the hotels/restaurants? If so, who would you recommend?

Tom Moore
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Tom Moore » November 5th, 2019, 11:51 am

Close up is totally out of my areas of interest and expertise so I've never gone looking for it to be able to answer that question. The monthly "vegas wonderground" event has a lot of close up and bar magic in between the main stage acts; however as the event is effectively an "open mic" night (all be it with world class stage performers) i would imagine that just like the main stage performances the quality/skill of the close up will vary wildly.

If you are looking for quality close-up performances you should really check out the various magic theatres in mainland Europe (disclosure; i've literally designed the theatre for a number of european magic theatres) - The Alexander Krist Theatre in Munich was the first and recognised as the most elaborate, Le Double Fond in Paris is where the duviviers do amazing stuff - both these spaces do a mixture of parlour and close-up magic that is exquisite and well worth a trip.
"Ingenious" - Ben Brantley: New York Times

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Richard Kaufman » November 5th, 2019, 12:18 pm

In the Now Performing section in Genii we list people doing close-up at various Vegas venues.
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CraigMitchell
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby CraigMitchell » November 8th, 2019, 7:25 pm

@Tom - have you seen Cirque's RUN yet yourself ? Is it as bad as early reports say ?

sleightofdan
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby sleightofdan » November 13th, 2019, 2:37 pm

Thank you all for the suggestions. I had time to see Mac King, Copperfield, and Hans Klok.

- Mac King was fantastic with smart presentations. His version of the shadow box illusion had some funny bits before nearly terrifying a kid off the stage. Great value. I do wish he still did the longer goldfish routine, and refrained from advertising his fan-gear prior to the finale.

- Copperfield is still the King of large-scale illusions. My seat could not have been closer, and this guy produced a classic car (a la Kalanag) perhaps 10 feet from me. The full-person vanishes were also mind-blowing. My only criticism is that it felt too sappy; I think he could have benefited from better emotional hooks and themes.

- Hans Klok was an exciting show. I did not see the montage sequence to which Tom was referring, but still saw a Ton of magic. Some effects were done so quickly, my eyes were fooled even if I was confident of the method.

In the non-magic world, I saw the Cirque "MJ" show which was horrible. The first Cirque show I saw was "O," which was possibly the greatest show I have ever seen. However the MJ show appeared to simply appropriate the brand. The stage felt more like a high-school theatre than a colosseum. Next chance, I would see "Love" instead, which appeared to be higher quality.

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erdnasephile
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby erdnasephile » November 13th, 2019, 7:35 pm

Dan:

Thanks for reporting back.

Re: Copperfield. How was the alien sequence? Out of all of the on-line criticism of the show, that seems to come up a lot.

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CraigMitchell
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby CraigMitchell » November 14th, 2019, 1:26 am

"In the non-magic world, I saw the Cirque "MJ" show which was horrible. The first Cirque show I saw was "O," which was possibly the greatest show I have ever seen. However the MJ show appeared to simply appropriate the brand. The stage felt more like a high-school theatre than a colosseum."

Putting the 'scandal issues aside' - MJ One is consistently rated as one of Cirque's top shows ( it has an incredible 78% Excellent rating on Tripadvisor - O is at 79% ) and is as close to a MJ extravaganza as you can ever get. Cirque's goal was to immerse the audience into the world of MJ's music which by its very nature sees them appropriate the brand. Whilst MJ is not everyone's cup of tea, to compare the stage to a high school theatre is completely non-sensical. Cirque quite literally took every piece of tech and production spectacle they had and threw it at the show ... it is an assault on the senses ... and they achieved an incredible result.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vtn-pnt1ub8

sleightofdan
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby sleightofdan » November 14th, 2019, 7:25 pm

I am a huge MJ fan — probably saw his “Moonwalker” movie a couple hundred times as a child. But I respectfully disagree. In my opinion, it did not deserve great reviews and paled in comparison to “O.” The group I was with saw “Love” the night before and were also disappointed. To each his own

The alien sequence did not feel authentic. Perhaps it was a hit with the younger audience members? The animatronic alien was neat but not magical in this day and age. It just felt too corny. But the spaceship appearance was unbelievable!!!! It felt like I was dreaming. I just cannot believe some of the large scale stuff he pulled off. I still think he’s the overall GOAT

Robert77
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Re: Viva Las Vegas

Postby Robert77 » November 14th, 2019, 8:38 pm

CraigMitchell wrote:"In the non-magic world, I saw the Cirque "MJ" show which was horrible. The first Cirque show I saw was "O," which was possibly the greatest show I have ever seen. However the MJ show appeared to simply appropriate the brand. The stage felt more like a high-school theatre than a colosseum."

Putting the 'scandal issues aside' - MJ One is consistently rated as one of Cirque's top shows ( it has an incredible 78% Excellent rating on Tripadvisor - O is at 79% ) and is as close to a MJ extravaganza as you can ever get. Cirque's goal was to immerse the audience into the world of MJ's music which by its very nature sees them appropriate the brand. Whilst MJ is not everyone's cup of tea, to compare the stage to a high school theatre is completely non-sensical. Cirque quite literally took every piece of tech and production spectacle they had and threw it at the show ... it is an assault on the senses ... and they achieved an incredible result.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vtn-pnt1ub8


I can't comment on the issue of 'high school stage', but based on that video I will just say I'm with Craig; that looks AWFUL. A bunch of dancers vaguely dressed up like Michael Jackson (but in white; let's not even go there) jumping around while pictures and song-bytes of MJ flash on the background...that's just a pitiful, 'branded', hodge podge.

MJs own video from Thriller where he turns into a robot and wipes out Joe Pesci's bad guys was done decades ago and was epic.

I don't classify myself as a fan, but I've always enjoyed most of MJ's music, and have made respect for his talent, regardless of the 'damage to his brand' that happened.

But then, I haven't been to Vegas for 20 years. A friend my age who has said it's no longer fun to go, as all the quiet places to sit back, smoke a cigar, and have a martini are now noisy we brightly lit. Some of sort generational thing probably.


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