How did the whole thing come about?
MGM Resorts International already has three large venues -- the new T-Mobile Arena, the MGM Grand Garden Arena and the Mandalay Bay Events Center -- as well as a handful of small theaters for Cirque shows and other local productions. But the gaming and resort giant was missing a viable mid-size venue in Las Vegas. The Park Theater solves that problem and will be able to compete with the Colosseum at Caesars Palace down the Strip, which is currently home to long term residencies by the likes of Céline Dion and Elton John.
The Park Theater has already signed Bruno Mars, Cher, and Ricky Martin to what it calls "extended engagements" staying clear of the word "residency." These are big scores. Until recently, Bruno Mars had a regular gig at the Chelsea Theater at the Cosmopolitan. Cher's own extended run at the Colosseum back in 2009 drew strong numbers even at the peak of the recession proving her ability to sell tickets in any era. The doors of the Park Theater will officially open on December 17th with a double-bill of Stevie Nicks and the Pretenders who are currently on an arena tour of the United States.
"The gridiron over the stage alone can hold over 175,000 pounds, which is comparable to an arena," notes Pelletier who also says house audio and lighting can be removed to accommodate big acts already on tour and using their own equipment.
The Park Theater is also a natural competitor for The Joint at the Hard Rock, a high-tech concert venue that has seen short-term residencies from arena veterans like KISS and Def Leppard in recent years.