Colossal Investment In Cher

Columnist Mike Weatherford of the Las Vegas Review-Journal recently explored the downside of the successful residencies of Celine Dion, Cher and other high-profile Vegas shows that depend on the main attraction staying healthy.

Cher took over Dion’s Vegas stay at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace and has been a successful replacement for producer AEG, raking in on average a couple million dollars per month.

But sometimes 62-year-old singers get ill, and Cher has canceled three times in two weeks, and two consecutive weekends right before show time. In fact, Las Vegas Sun gossip columnist Robin Leach was told Cher would not return to the stage until early next year.

“Seven missed shows add up to at least 29,400 seats, many of which were bought by fans who flew in expressly to see Cher,” Weatherford noted, adding a quote from a fan on who said she flew 700 miles to see the diva and was “really, really devastated.”

“Caesars offers room-and-show packages on its Web site, making it hard to explain to fans that the casino and the venue are operated by separate companies,” Weatherford wrote, “so only the ticket price can be refunded.”

He noted that a million-dollar humidity system that was a source of diva jokes was removed after Dion left the building to make room for more staging. Weatherford speculated it might have been a worthy investment after all, considering the current situation.

The columnist didn’t mention that many high-profile guests like Elton John have made the Colosseum a profitable venue when the resident performer is on vacation.

Also, word has it that Dion may return to the Colosseum, according to the Review-Journal.