Pure Red Light Vegas

If the idea of “nightclubbing” has come to mean paying for expensive bottle service in a dingy dance club with a no-name DJ for the chance to get waved at by a Kardashian, two former Live Nation execs want to bring chaos to that scene.

As in Chaos, the twice-weekly popup club they’re exporting from Las Vegas to The Fillmore at Irving Plaza, making its Big Apple debut May 18.

Ned Collett, now with Pure Management Group, and Bruce Eskowitz of Red Light Management have put their considerable resources together to add something new to the club scene by not only supplying patrons with top-shelf dining and other amenities but with artists who don’t just sit there and wave but perform.

Collett has already made his bones with PMG, having brought Pure nightclub at Las Vegas’ Caesars Palace back from the brink after the Internal Revenue Service raided the club, alleging bouncers were becoming millionaires on a steady stream of unreported thousand-dollar handshakes from visitors hoping to gain entry. The resultant press was national and damning – but Collett has managed to not only get Pure back on its feet but to thrive.

Though the investigation is continuing, Collett told Pollstar he’s cooperating fully with authorities and, in the meantime, he’s made changes to Pure that have not only worked to generate new revenue streams for Caesars, but for similar properties in Sin City including LAX at Luxor and Christian Audigier at Treasure Island.

“When I got back to Vegas to restructure the company, the economy wasn’t just in a downward trajectory – it was a spiral.

Tourism was falling, people were nervous,” Collett said. “We had to right-side the company and put a plan together that was very proactive and very diverse. With Red Light, and knowing Bruce and what Red Light brings to the table, the thing was to become a market leader and provide guests with unparalleled entertainment offerings.

“We separate ourselves by being diverse and dynamic. Bruce and his team have worked with our marketing team and now we have a strategic plan,” Collett said. “We align ourselves with our casino partners so it gives us a double-edged marketing advantage by letting our hotel partners know months in advance we’re going to have major events.”

When Red Light Management came aboard in 2009, according to Eskowitz, the company took a look at the venues and business model and realized they could spiff up the experience without “breaking up the vibe” of the Vegas nightclub.

“We said, ‘Why don’t we take our background in entertainment and use that aspect of it to actually have our artists put a few songs together and have them do some of their hits, usually to track?’” Eskowitz told Pollstar.

“We began to bring in top flight entertainment artists like Eve, Fat Joe and Big Boi. On New Year’s Eve we had 50 Cent at Pure, Black Eyed Peas at LAX at the Luxor. LL Cool J, Travis Barker, Leona Lewis, Ludacris have all performed sets, and the list goes on.”

The celebrity performers extend to the DJ ranks as well, with people like Sasha and will.i.am playing dance tracks. But the highlight, Eskowitz and Collett agree, is the live performers doing not necessarily concerts, but taking the stage to perform sets then joining the clubbers in the rooms, which might sport as many as four different areas including fine dining, cocktail lounges and private booths.

Furniture can be removed at Pure to create a 950-capacity venue for full shows, if need be.

“The shows have been remarkably successful. It gives the guest to Las Vegas an 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. alternative,” Collett said. “And for Pure the nightclub, with its four rooms and 40,000 square feet, we can put fans in the other rooms and let them have an after-show experience before we turn the club on at 11 p.m.”

The plan has worked so well that Collett and Eskowitz announced they’ve made a deal with Live Nation’s Fillmore at Irving Plaza in New York City to re-create the Vegas success and keep the concert venue rockin’ before and after concerts, as well as on otherwise dark days.

The fact they both, as former Live Nation execs, have long relationships with the Fillmore at Irving Plaza, including Live Nation NY President Kevin Morrow, doesn’t hurt. And Morrow was open to the idea of bring some Las Vegas hip to the Big Apple.

“Irving Plaza is one of the most versatile venues in new York City,” Morrow said. “With Chaos, Live Nation is creating a truly unique nightlife experience by pairing up with Pure Management Group, the country’s top nightlife innovator. New York City is ready for Chaos.”