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Poker News | World Poker News

The Venetian Introduces New Poker Entertainment

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Get ready. The Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino in Las Vegas has reserved its showroom for a live, interactive poker-themed stage show that will debut in the fall of 2008. On the heels of the relative failure of All In: The Poker Musical, this one is called The Real Deal! and will attempt to do something new with the poker stage show concept.

The original format of The Real Deal! will combine poker with humor and wireless technology to create an audience-participation event. The members of the audience will be allowed to play from their seats as well as on stage with the poker pros to compete for prizes ranging from merchandise to home electronics to the $1 million grand prize. In the end, the three players with the most chips, including one pro, one amateur, and the point leader from the audience, will play a three-handed finale on stage. In addition, players will be able to wager on various hands, such as the suits of the cards to come, and they will have the opportunity to draw for a royal flush, which would be worth $1 million.

Entertainment industry veteran Merv Adelson, who co-founded Lorimar Telepictures and previously served as vice chairman of Time Warner, Inc., combined forces with award-show producer/director Gary Smith, television producer Bill Nuss, producer Gary Adelson, and marketing agent Erick Brownstein to produce and launch the show.

Merv Adelson said, “Never before has poker been so integrated with entertainment. The popularity of poker is unquestioned, as is the viability of live game show experiences in Las Vegas. The Real Deal! will keep guests laughing and give them the unique chance to get into the heads of the world’s best pros as they share tips and strategy throughout the fast-paced game. We know it will quickly become a hot ticket.”

The Real Deal! boasts of a star-studded lineup of well-known poker pros who will rotate their appearances in the production, some of whom are scheduled to be Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Scotty Nguyen, Phil Hellmuth, Antonio Esfandiari , Jennifer Harman, Eli Elezra, Phil Laak, and Gavin Smith. A host for the show is currently being sought, as is a comedian who can add humor that will accent the production. They all hope to bring a wide range of audience members to the show.

Brunson had the following to say about the upcoming production: “Poker fans have been able to view and enjoy professional poker action for years on television. This is different. Everyone in the audience can be in the game and compete with the pros and other guests. It is a one-of-a-kind poker experience.”

Jason Gastwirth, Vice-President of Entertainment for Las Vegas Sands Corp., added, “When looking for a new concept to add to our entertainment lineup, we searched for an entirely new experience that would promote audience participation while incorporating well-known personalities that shine beyond the bright lights of the Strip – we found that in The Real Deal!.”

Show dates have yet to be announced, but beginning in the fall, it will run six days a week at the Venetian Showroom in Las Vegas, with two shows per evening on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. VIP packages will also be sold for those who wish to participate and meet the poker pros after the show.

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