Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

May 9, 2007

Wynn Las Vegas' Spamalot in Trouble?

Posted by Hunter

Well, if this continues, Spamalot at Wynn Las Vegas is probably in trouble.

Of course, many speculated the show might run into the same sort of trouble that 'Avenue Q.' had in the same space.

This is not good news for the show or Wynn Las Vegas, which has struggled with their entertainment offerings from day one.

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Read archived comments (11 so far)
May 10, 2007 1:35 AM Posted by christopher

they really should consider not chopping the dialog out of these Broadway pieces in order to make it shorter to get to the gaming revenue more quickly. I really think supports of the arts, including myself, feel deeply that that is a cheap shot... like watered down Broadway as a gimmick to get people in... I haven't gone to see Phantom for that very reason.

btw, Avenue Q was awesome.. hated to see it leave.

-=- christopher

my Las Vegas blog

May 10, 2007 1:45 AM Posted by mike_ch

I was saying in March that under the best conditions I could see it lasting two years. Steve thinks it'll play out a full year. It could, conceivably, move away earlier than that. My guess has always been 14 months (with 24 as the highly positive one) so we'll see how close I get.

Please, pull the plug on "Steve Wynn, Master Impresario" because it's obvious that the guy doesn't know what the LV touring public wants without a test market. Steve's biggest entertainment hits were people who were already established draws in town being elevated into a money machine, and part of the popular image of Las Vegas. Siegfried & Roy were playing at the Stardust & Frontier, and of course Danny Gans had runs at Stratosphere and Rio.

May 10, 2007 4:23 AM Posted by Brian

With the town getting Cirque-d out and the less-than-stellar record the Broadway shows coming in have had, is it time for Vegas to go back to its roots and concentrate on headliners?

May 10, 2007 4:58 AM Posted by mesa

Hard to believe,I really enjoyed the show so much I much that we will be seeing it again on tuesday.Maybe ticket prices are starting to
turn people away from the shows.

May 10, 2007 5:41 AM Posted by Tom M

I wonder if what we are seeing is also part of a rejection of the high pricing. Most Las Vegas entertainment is priced thru the roof. It has enjoyed a long runup of pricing and maybe it has hit the ceiling. Also, with the prices this high, maybe they don't need to sell out to be financially successful.

May 10, 2007 6:26 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Steve was directly ask at the shareholder meeting how Spamalot was doing. He said it is selling about 1000 tickets per show. The theater holds close to 1400 as I recall. He said he is pleased with that, but would love to sell out. So I am not surprised to see tickets at the 1/2 price place. The bottom line is this, there are too many seats to fill in LV now, and not enough rooms to match, in fact with the addition of many new theaters, and the closure of many hotels, like Stardust for example, there are less rooms in Vegas now, than there was this time last year. The second problem, is the new night club scene. Wynn stated, that ALL shows in town, are having trouble with their late show, because they are in direct competition with the night clubs. This is a problem, and its a problem all over town. A year ago KA was the hottest ticket in town, now they have lowered their ticket price to $69 for the cheap seats. You don't lower your price if you are selling out. Phantom, has cut back the number of shows they perform each week. Until we get more rooms, and less seats this problem will not go away. Jersey Boys will do well at first, then die off also, once the newness wears off. One problem I see is this... I have seen shows like Mystere a dozen times, I've seen KA, 3 times, Le Reve 3 times, etc. Most people don't want to see a musical more than once. And while Vegas might get 40 million visitors this year, it might be more like 10 million people like me that go 4 times a year. So after I see Phantom, or Spamalot once, I more than likely won't be rushing back. I am not too worried about this Spamalot thing, Ave. Q. Made money. Spamalot will too, but it be selling out much, besides Love, I don't think any show in town is selling out on a regular basis, and Love won't either once the newness wears off. I do think in the long run, CDS shows will fair better than most for the reason's I have already mentioned, and due to the fact, that they are LV exclusives.

May 10, 2007 1:38 PM Posted by Mike P.

I saw Spamalot a couple weeks ago. The theater was nearly full, with just a few empty seats along the sides. That was a Saturday though. I have to agree with Brian that I don't feel a need to see it again. Cirque shows and washed up pop acts (except Celine!) might bear repeat visits.

On the Wynn financials thread DLO wondered if resort spending other than gambling at Wynn counted towards comps. DLO, if you're following this one, the answer is almost certainly no.

May 11, 2007 4:47 AM Posted by Robbie M

I have to agree that Broadway shows will have a more limited appeal than other Vegas entertainment. As a fairly frequent visitor from the UK (every 1 to 2 years) one of the main draws is shows you can't see anywhere else. Shows like Spamalot, Phantom or The Producers which I can see in London wouldn't be a reason to travel to Vegas - what I'd like to see is a modern interpretation of a classic Vegas show at Wynn LV an updated version of Jubilee or the Follies with classic vegas elements given a modern twist, or how about a rotating series of headliners similar to Caesars and MGM Grands line ups?

May 11, 2007 9:19 AM Posted by motoman

Wynn himself seemed to acknowledge that Broadway-style musical theater might be a failed experiment in Vegas:

"...Idle also broke into song, the Monty Python signature diddy 'Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life,' while referring to Wynn's worry (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) over the show's success.

Wynn also spoke, or rather joked, to the skepticism of musicals on the Strip, mentioning the closing of 'Avenue Q' and others.

'Maybe the musical theater isn't right for Las Vegas,' Wynn said with a wry smile. 'Why not face the inevitable? We looked for the perfect piece of material to put a final chapter on theater in Las Vegas. the end!'

Let's hope not. ..."

Robbie M's got a point, rotating headliners makes a lot of sense. I was surprised Caesars signed Bette Midler on a permanent basis, as I would've thought changing things up makes more sense. Wonder if Elton will still sub?

May 11, 2007 11:03 AM Posted by Dave

Three words: Guys and Dolls.

Seriously, a revival of this show would be a great fit. The biggest question would be whether to update it or make it a period piece, but it' s a high-energy show with at least one number everyone knows "Luck be a Lady" that could easily work as a 90-minute special.

Of course, it would be hard to match the gritty realism of the film version in a theater, but the right designer could pull it off.

October 31, 2007 6:43 PM Posted by rob

it's not dead yet!
being from a smaller canadian city i don't get the chance to see many broadway musicals. we get the washed up pop acts here, i don't need to go to vegas to see them. i enjoy the wide variety of shows in vegas.
the backstage tour at spamalot was also fantastic, the gudes were a couple of the 'laker girls'and were great really added alot to the whole experience, which is key to future success. they must make the shows an event not just a 'show' in order to compete.