Danny Gans, the ultimate Las Vegas performer, died unexpectedly of natural causes in his sleep at his home in Henderson, NV, on May 1, at age 52. Most recently, he had been performing at the new Encore theater, which is part of Wynn Resorts. The Encore boasted a 70-by-70 foot marquee for him.
Gans had been performing in Las Vegas since 1996, starting at the Stratosphere. He changed venues a few times, first with the Rio Hotel and then with his own theater in the Mirage from 2000-2008.
He moved to the Encore on February 10, 2009, where tickets were generally $90 to $120. Gans earned between $15 million to $20 million a year by performing on The Strip with a family oriented show, staying away from risque material.
Interestingly, Gans was more famous in Vegas than the rest of the country. He generally played five nights a week, 46 weeks a year in Vegas. His shtick was comedy and song with as many as 60 impersonations of singers, including Frank Sinatra, Rod Stewart and even Anita Baker.
In 1995, he appeared in New York in “Danny Gans on Broadway,” which lasted for just six showings. He was then hired by the Stratosphere in Las Vegas and basically stayed put. Perhaps Gans is the epitome of the saying “What happens in Las Vegas, stays in Las Vegas.”
Gans is survived by his wife and three children.