deadmau5, the superstar electronic music producer and DJ, will headline a night of music, entertainment and eye-popping, Burning Man-style immersive big art at a free ticketed event Thursday, May 18, at Historic Commercial Center, just blocks east of the Las Vegas Strip.
deadmau5 will perform live from atop the iconic art piece Forest House, a creation featuring fantastical trees of light and a 60,000-watt sound system made famous from its appearances at Burning Man and the Electric Daisy Carnival.
Tickets for the unprecedented event, dubbed the “Fabulous Commercial Center Block Party,” will be available with a limit of two per email address on Monday, May 15 at 10 a.m. Availability is limited.
The night’s entertainment will be spread across three stages. Gates open at 6 p.m. Bella Strings will perform at 7 p.m., followed by musician Franky Perez at 8 p.m. and deadmau5 at 9 p.m.
Among the numerous, large-scale immersive art pieces spread across the venue will be the original El Pulpo Mecanico, a 35-foot-tall mechanical octopus with fire spewing from its eight limbs, a Burning Man staple for many years that is making its Las Vegas debut.
El Pulpo Mecanico will be joined by other monumental art creations, including Electric Dandelions by artist Abram Santa Cruz/Liquid Pixel, lighted Cloud Swings by artist Lindsay Glatz and much more to delight the senses.
“This event will demonstrate the power of combining art and entertainment to revitalize urban areas,” said Joshua Levine, art consultant and event curator, Fired Up Management, who also curated AREA15’s original Art Island outdoor exhibition area. “Historic Commercial Center is on its way to becoming an epic cultural destination, and we’re excited to partner with Clark County and Insomniac and show what we can bring.”
Dozens of local artists will be featured while food trucks and drink stations will dot the landscape. Additionally, attendees may visit many of the shops, galleries, bars and restaurants of the 150 merchants who make Historic Commercial Center their home.
“The Fabulous Commercial Center Block Party signifies the re-emergence of an area that for decades was considered to be the very center of Las Vegas,” said Clark County Commissioner Tick Segerblom. “It kicks off an initiative to bring excitement and the arts back to the larger South of Sahara Avenue District.” The district is bounded by Sahara Avenue, Maryland Parkway, Liberace/Karen Avenue and Joe W. Brown Drive.
“Historic Commercial Center has a storied place in the history of Las Vegas,” noted County Commissioner Ross Miller, who was instrumental in developing Thursday’s event and whose family visited the area for years. “This incredible ‘Fabulous Commercial Center Block Party’ will be exciting and a lot of fun. But it is also part of a larger effort to focus the community’s attention on the area so that we can grow it together.”
Having deadmau5 perform certainly is an attention-getter. The Canadian is one of the world’s most respected electronic music producers and has enjoyed international success with his two-time, platinum-certified single, “Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff,” as well as “Professional Griefers,” “Sofi Needs A Ladder” and “I Remember.” He also has released seven critically acclaimed albums and is a multiple JUNO Award winner and GRAMMY®-nominated artist.
Las Vegas-born Perez and his band also are expected to wow Block Party attendees. He is best known as a solo artist but tours as the vocalist for Finnish metal band Apocalyptica. He is a former guitarist for Scars on Broadway and has released three solo albums.
Bella Strings is an all-female electric string group led by creator Nina DiGregorio that frequently tours the country to wide acclaim.
Parking for Thursday’s Block Party is limited so ride-sharing is encouraged. There will be a dedicated ride-share pick-up and drop-off spot on Liberace Avenue on the south side of Commercial Center.
All those attending the Block Party will be subject to a security screening. Bags are admissible in clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and not in excess of 12” x 6” x 12”.
The event represents a collaboration among Clark County, art consultancy and event curator Fired Up Management, electronic music event promoter and distributor Insomniac, the UNLV College of Fine Arts and the Historic Commercial Center Association and its merchants. In addition to Fired Up Management’s Levine, the Historic Commercial Center redevelopment project is also helmed by Architect Robert Gurdison as well as Tom Michel, former owner of the Vegas and Nevada Rooms at Commercial Center. Historic Commercial Center is located at 953 E. Sahara Avenue, east of the Las Vegas Strip and west of Maryland Parkway. The Block Party coincides with the renaming of Karen Avenue, which runs on the south side of Historic Commercial Center, to Liberace Avenue.
The South of Sahara Avenue District (SOSA) covers a massive 120 acres and is ripe for redevelopment. Historic Commercial Center is at the center of it all and can be an incubator for the arts and eventually a home to arts centers and museums. Its history as a community hub and entertainment center is storied. The Doors, The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin and the Beach Boys have performed there. Elvis Presley bought Priscilla’s engagement ring at a jewelry store at the center and Liberace had his furs dry-cleaned at the site. And, members of the Rat Pack ate regularly at its deli.
For more information on the event or to register for tickets, go to www.ClarkCountyNV.gov/fabulous23