Las Vegas Sun

December 16, 2018

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Keeping tabs on Las Vegas headliners and Strip residencies

Britney Spears

Rob Grabowski/AP

Britney Spears concludes her show at Planet Hollywood this month.

Britney Spears is back onstage at the Axis at Planet Hollywood tonight, but not for long—she has just four shows left. The pop star’s “Piece of Me” residency will have generated around $135 million in ticket sales over four years (according to Billboard magazine) when it wraps up on New Year’s Eve, making it one of the most successful Strip headlining shows of the last 15 years.

Britney isn’t the only superstar winding down a big Vegas show. Elton John began his first residency, “The Red Piano,” at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace in 2004, and followed it up with the more critically acclaimed “The Million Dollar Piano” in 2011. He’ll finish the show on May 19. With Mariah Carey concluding her residency this year, the Colosseum will be left with Celine Dion, Rod Stewart and the country combo of Reba, Brooks & Dunn; The Who is expected to return to the iconic venue next year as well.

Meanwhile, back at the Axis, the perpetually busy Jennifer Lopez has announced the final performance of her high-energy “All I Have” production is set for September 29. With no Britney and no J.Lo, the Planet Hollywood theater’s residencies are down to Lionel Richie, Pitbull and the Backstreet Boys.

Throw in the Strip’s newest big headliner room, the Park Theater at the resort soon to be formerly known as the Monte Carlo, and its three current headliners (Bruno Mars, Cher and Ricky Martin) and it seems we are on the verge of some new, star-studded announcements. The best bet right now appears to be Lady Gaga, who just played her second tour stop at T-Mobile Arena Saturday night. MGM Resorts has been rumored to be chasing Gaga since it started building the Park Theater, and local blog Vital Vegas reported this week that a deal has been made for 50 shows at the sparkling new venue.

The other two long-rumored, big name acts are Adele and Justin Timberlake, A-listers who could command top dollar at any venue. There’s also a good chance Spears and Carey will be back in the mix at different venues; reports of a deal putting Mariah at the Venetian Theater have already circulated. Smaller rooms like the ones at Venetian, Wynn and the Cosmopolitan are experimenting with the headliner model, and deals have been in the works recently that would put Barry Manilow at the Westgate and Boy George at a Caesars Entertainment property, possibly the Flamingo.