If someone is asked to name something symbolic of Las Vegas, what usually comes to mind? Gambling, shopping, eating, partying, hot, etc. But what about symbols? There would be cards, dice, roulette wheel, money, but there are some that have faded away.
It’s hard to imagine that something as iconic as a showgirl almost doesn’t exist. Bally’s was the last casino to feature a show with showgirls and it shut down Jubilee! on February 11, 2016. The tall, leggy girls with the skimpy costumes and tall headpieces are hard to forget.
I still remember how I would watch the old “Vega$” with Robert Urich as Dan Tanna, private eye. Seems like every casino had an act with showgirls in them. Of course, Dan was always in the Desert Inn.
It didn’t happened overnight, but as early as 2001, there was were only two shows left in Las Vegas that featured the iconic showgirls; Jubilee! and Best of the Folies-Bergère that closed out at the Tropicana. What lead to it’s demise? Shows such as Blue Man Group, Cirque De Solei, Legends in Concert and other Hollywood style productions that are more flashy and have more of the “wow”factor.
You can still find “showgirls” on the Strip and the Fremont Street Experience, but I have to protest that the buskers on Fremont Street and the Strip are NOT showgirls but simply girls dressing up to panhandle money.