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September 23, 2017

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Reprieve might save topless ‘Sydney After Dark’; changes are in the works



“Sydney After Dark” at Planet Hollywood.

‘Sydney After Dark’

Dancers rehearse for the new production “Sydney After Dark” on Saturday, July 5, 2014, at Planet Hollywood. Launch slideshow »
Click to enlarge photo

Dancers rehearse for the new production “Sydney After Dark” on Saturday, July 5, 2014, at Planet Hollywood.

Click to enlarge photo

Dancers rehearse for the new production “Sydney After Dark” on Saturday, July 5, 2014, at Planet Hollywood.

The new topless Aussie spectacle “Sydney After Dark” received a one-week reprieve from closing at Planet Hollywood Showroom over the weekend in an attempt to find another venue to present it as a “more intimate cabaret production.”

However, the gorgeous, tall and talented cast of dancers and singers will end their run this Sunday if they don’t find a new theater for a “trimmed-down version with the right vibe.”

“Sydney After Dark” is hoping to jump across the mezzanine floor of Planet Hollywood to Sin City Theater, but their production as it is now doesn’t fit those confines. Talk is of scaling back on cast, costumes and production numbers but hoping to find a last-minute alternative.

One knowledgeable Strip-show insider told me: “The girls are gorgeous, but the production numbers and costumes were too ambitious. They planned it in Australia as a big spectacular when it should have stuck to a sexy vibe in the intimacy of a cabaret room.

“It’s like the old AT&T commercial — you need to reach out and almost touch someone rather than be so far away out of reach on a big stage.”

I’ve learned that if a new theater can’t be found within the next seven days, the Australian invasion might return home Down Under and retool the production and then return with “more intimacy and less production” in a smaller Las Vegas theater.

“Times have changed in Las Vegas. It may have been a hit in Australia, but audiences here want to see sexy close up and not far away under fabulous costumes. The show has the sexy, but it didn’t need being overshadowed by classical dancing, Australian videos and production pizazz,” my insider added.

“There’s no shame in closing before officially opening because that’s what previews are for. It will come back stronger and better. They have the beauty. They have the talent. They have the music. They have the dancing.

“It was all packaged as too much instead of sticking to Las Vegas basics. They certainly had the sexy, but it was not emphasized the right way in the right place.”

I saw the show its first night in early July and was concerned that Las Vegas audiences wouldn’t understand Sydney in the title. The topless beauties are stunning but too often hidden by glamorous, over-the-top costumes and Australian sightseeing videos.

Our esteemed Senior Editor Don Chareunsy saw the show Sunday night in place of its planned media opening performance last Friday. He had the last word:

“Lead Natalie Conway has the voice, looks and charisma of a star, and the cast, costumes and Emmy Award winner Andy Walmsley’s sets are gorgeous. ‘Sydney After Dark’ has potential, but it needs work. They’re not even topless in the last three or four acts!”

You have until Sunday night to see “Sydney After Dark” for yourself and understand what everybody is talking about!

Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.

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