Elaborate shows and top notch DJ talent is nothing new to Las Vegas.
Cirque du Soleil has kept thousands of former gymnasts from having to use their college degrees in the workforce. And Vegas seems to be a rite of passage for DJs, you aren’t big time unless you’ve spun the beats on a turntable in Sin City.
While both shows and DJs have had extremely successful runs on their own, one up-and-coming DJ had a vision to combine the both of them and bring the result to the most iconic name in the nightclub industry, Studio 54.
San Diego-based DJ Loczi is throwing elements rarely seen in a DJ show to create “DJ Loczi’s Electric Dream,” which kicks off on New Year’s Eve and will become a staple of Studio 54’s Friday line-up.
“Electric Dream” is perhaps the best fitting name of any Las Vegas show because when you see what Loczi is planning to put into this show you might say he’s dreaming if he thinks he’s going to pull it off. But despite big ambitions, after four months of planning and rehearsing Loczi is fully prepared to deliver something Vegas has never seen.
“The idea of it is that in a dream you never quite know what’s going to happen and how those things are going to develop,” said Loczi, who also has residencies in San Diego; Austin, Texas and is working on another in Miami. “So what we’re trying to do is create multiple points of interest and different levels of surprise and as simple as maybe we’ll have an eclectic-dressed individual sitting above the crowd and maybe she won’t have a face. But we don’t know.
“The idea is let’s give you something so that when you look at it you enjoy it, but you have to take that second look because there’s just that little bit of twist to it to give that surrealism.”
While face-less dancers maybe something out of the ordinary, it is hardly the only outlandish element of this production. “Electric Dream,” will include LED walls, go-go dancers, wall climbers, confetti cannons, balloon drops, computer-generated images with the aid of green screens and scale models of the Strip and the MGM Grand, live musicians, video from the original Studio 54 and more.
The idea started with Loczi wanting to piece together a full Las Vegas-style production show with a full nightclub experience. While he had some idea about where he wanted to go with this show, the concept began to snowball with the help of several other creative minds including Barry Morgan, MGM’s director of entertainment.
Since then Loczi, whose real name is Zachary Loczi, has gone through countless rehearsals, meetings, brainstorming sessions, jam sessions with the live band and dance choreography. The process has been so complex that Loczi has used flow charts, something you probably thought were only used in boring business meetings.
While Vegas-style stage shows have strict choreography, “Electric Dream” has the flexibility needed in a nightclub environment to react to partygoers’ moods.
“The reality is, although there’s a lot of moving parts, what the people inside of the venue are going to experience is just that an experience,” Loczi said. “We don’t want it to be rushed, we don’t want it to be forced. One of the best parts of the shows is there’s no specific, 100 percent guideline, timeline that we have. We built the show to have movement.”
Loczi said that when the crowd dictates the mood he can simply call out the orders for a specific routine and within seconds everyone will know their role.
What makes this show even more interesting is that it will be at Studio 54. The original club in New York, was known for cutting edge entertainment and shaped the nightlife industry of the 1970s. Nightclubs around Las Vegas are currently putting more emphasis on the music and DJs in particular with big names like Erick Morillo, Afrojack and Lil Jon taking up residencies.
“For me, I don’t think there’s any club that’s more iconic than Studio 54,” Loczi said. “Las Vegas has never had and currently doesn’t have anything like this. So you take the most iconic venue in the world and you evolve it and revolutionize the way that people experience a nightclub there. They’re going to trust it because you have to trust something that’s iconic and you’re going to give it a chance because it’s iconic.
“At the same time, Studio 54 really wants to be cutting edge and the way to do that is to create an experience that is cutting edge, that is revolutionary, that has taken the aspect of what other venues are doing and what we were doing at Studio 54 and evolve them even to another plateau.”