Is Vegas Heading For A Musical Reinvention?



September was a fantastic month for Dutch DJ legend Tiesto. The 45-year-old has had some fantastic gigs in his life, including being one of the first DJs to perform at an Olympic Games opening ceremony, a dream which he achieved in Athens in 2004.

Now, 10 years later, Tiesto has been given an equally prestigious task for 2014. Two months ago, he was asked to put together a 15-minute piece for the iconic Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas. For a display that has previously welcomed the musical talents of the Rat Pack and Elton John, it was a particularly proud moment for Tiesto.

While it may have been an achievement for him, it also spells the beginning of a new movement on the Las Vegas scene. As we emerge from the economic crisis and welcome in the digital age, more and more people are turning to sites like and shying away from the land-based casino scene.

This is obviously bad news for the famed Las Vegas strip, which reported a 12 per cent drop in revenue this September. As a result, tourism boards and casino owners are having to turn to new methods to bring in the clientele – no longer does the ‘bring them in and keep them there’ rule apply. Instead, the sole focus of Las Vegas is turning towards music rather than gambling.

This has been most evident in the region’s newest development: a new 20,000 concert seat arena. While some have said that the arena was designed to bring in a new sporting market to Vegas, there is no end to its concert-hosting potential.

Las Vegas attracts 40 million visitors per year, but visitor trends are already indicating a lower average age of tourist, and the music scene in the area is reflecting this. While some years ago, artists with appeal for older audiences such as Celine Dion were claiming residence in Caesar’s Palace, today, we’re more likely to see the likes of Britney Spears rocking the strip.

Gambling may be the preserve of those aged over 21, but with more and more musical options open to today’s visitors, it seems that throwing away a few pennies may be the last thing on the modern day tourist’s mind. Whether it’s a short DJ display or a multi-seat theater, there’s no doubting that Vegas is heading towards a change for the better.