The famous faces who helped build the Las Vegas scene

Las Vegas is renowned for its fabulous Hollywood lifestyle, bright lights and casino gaming. With over 100 luxury casino resorts offering the best entertainment on The Strip, it’s clear that Vegas is the place to be when it comes to theatre, music, events, and everything in between. However, the Las Vegas Strip wasn’t always so glamourous, and it’s thanks to some very famous faces that ‘Sin City’ has become the best place to catch top talent from the entertainment world.

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In the meantime, join us as we take a look at some of the famous faces who helped build the fabulous Las Vegas scene…

Elvis Presley 

First up we have the “King of Rock and Roll” himself, Elvis Presley. In the 1960s, Presley’s career was suffering as a result of albums and movies that were seen as old fashioned. In 1969, he was offered a chance to perform his first live show in more than eight years. The show was at the newly opened International Hotel in Las Vegas, and with reluctancy, he agreed. 

The rest is history. Presley completely turned his career around, and transformed the way people viewed performers in Las Vegas. To this day, the “King of Rock and Roll” is known as one of the biggest and most successful stars to ever take to the Vegas stage, and following his performances at the International Hotel, he bagged himself a number one hit with the now-iconic song, Suspicious Minds

Celine Dion

As one of the pop world’s most famous divas, Celine Dion has defied expectations and re-framed the name of Las Vegas performers. Generally, in the past, most performers on The Strip have been male, but with a diva on the scene, this was about to change. After taking to the stage in 2003, the singer has successfully staged more than 1000 shows.

The Rat Pack and Frank Sinatra 

The Rat Pack were a group made up of singers and actors including Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr, Peter Lawford, and talk-show host Joey Bishop. Despite making Las Vegas history as The Rat Pack, the group never referred to themselves as this, and preferred to be known as “The Clan”, or “The Summit”. 

In September 1951, Sinatra performed his first gig on The Strip at the Sands Hotel and Casino, which was just the seventh resort to have opened on The Strip at the time. This gig made Sinatra and the Rat Pack headliners. It’s said that Sinatra wouldn’t go out after dark without a sport jacket on, and he would always perform wearing a tuxedo. Many believe that it was him who influenced Vegas to change from a dusty Western town into something more glamourous. By 1954, up to eight million tourists a year were flocking to The Strip to see performances by the likes of Sinatra. 

Penn and Teller

The Las Vegas scene is not only known for its great singers, but comedians and magicians also played a huge part in getting Vegas up in lights. Penn and Teller are a magic duo who have been entertaining audiences since 1993. Since 2002, they’ve headlined at the Rio All Suites Hotel and Casino with their hilarious take on breathtaking magic. The pair have made many appearances in television specials and movies, keeping them popular in the public eye, but their Las Vegas masterpiece has always been the pinnacle of their success – as they created a whole new way for visitors to The Strip to enjoy unique entertainment. 

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