Monday, June 21, 2010

Daytime Emmy Awards or Viva Las Vegas?

Commentary about the Daytime Emmys in Las Vegas, published in the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

It’s the first time any Emmycast has been staged somewhere other than the traditional broadcast hubs of New York and Los Angeles, notes executive producer David McKenzie of Associated Television International. Las Vegas seems an ideal alternative, he adds.

“Think of all the game shows that have come to Las Vegas,” McKenzie says. “Think of all the actual games in Las Vegas — and all the slot machines that are tied into game shows,” plus “all the talk shows that come into Vegas.” Add glitz and glamour worthy of any soap opera diva and it adds up to “a fairly cool marriage” between the Daytime Emmys and this year’s Vegas setting, he maintains.

That setting will be reflected in a “very Vegas-themed show,” McKenzie promises, with a large local contingent appearing on the telecast — including such Strip fixtures as Blue Man Group, Cirque du Soleil, David Copperfield, Marie Osmond, “Jersey Boys” and “Lion King” cast members and the “Jubilee!” showgirls, all of whom are scheduled to appear.

Even more Vegas types, from Cher to Barry Manilow to Garth Brooks, are expected to make taped contributions as part of the show’s tribute to “American Bandstand” and original host Dick Clark, according to McKenzie. (Other familiar faces taking part in the Clark tribute include Chubby Checker, Tony Orlando, Frankie Avalon and the Spinners.)

“I think Las Vegas is a great place to host award shows — and do any TV shows,” says McKenzie, whose previous made-in-Vegas productions include the “World Magic Awards” and “Masters of Illusion.” Overall, “It’s a good trend,” he comments — one McKenzie says he expects will continue.


My thoughts: While I'm happy to know that the Daytime Emmy Awards managed to squeak its way on broadcast television again this year, I'm annoyed by the "Viva Las Vegas" domination that I predict is going to overwhelm the ceremony. I'd rather see tributes to Helen Wagner(Nancy Hughes, ATWT) and Frances Reid (Alice, DAYS) rather than to have to sit through lounge acts and Cirque du Soleil. Maybe next year, the awards should just be a web presentation since it seems like all things are going Internet now. At least keep the Daytime awards with daytime!

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