Criss Angel’s “Mindfreak Live” to Close at Luxor Las Vegas

After a 10-year run that provided a smackdown to his legions of haters, magnificent lunkhead Criss Angel will close his “Mindfreak Live” show at Luxor in 2018.

Criss Angel’s “Mindfreak Live” ends its run, and sometimes strained partnership with Cirque du Soleil, on Oct. 28, 2018, according to reports.

Mindfreak Live

Despite the odds, and a profound lack of personality or talent, Criss Angel survived and, and various times thrived, on the Las Vegas Strip.

Las Vegas Weekly’s Brock Radne was the first to share the surprisingly successful show is closing.

Angel’s show opened as “Believe” in Oct. 2008 to scathing reviews. Sorry, “BeLIEve.” Trust us, the weird “lie” affectation was the least of its problems.

While the removal of Cirque elements improved the show somewhat, production costs and declining ticket sales forced Angel and his team to close “Believe” on April 17, 2016.

A trimmed down “Mindfreak Live” opened May 11, 2016.

The revamped show didn’t exactly win over Criss Angel’s haters, but it allowed the show to continue through the end of his contract with Cirque du Soleil.

Criss Angel

No, we didn’t take this at Madame Tussauds. Criss Angel is just a really odd dude.

We saw “Mindfreak Live” and, beyond the random, pointless shouting of its star, we thought the show was reasonably entertaining. Angel seemed to enjoy himself, and his use of self-deprecating humor was refreshing given the annoying onscreen persona he’d cultivated on
the long-running A&E “Mindfreak” TV show.

“Mindfreak Live” also has one of the most impressive illusions we’ve ever seen in a Las Vegas show, a levitation that’s worth the price of admission. Yes, you know it’s wires, but that doesn’t take away from the sheer WTF of it all.

A 10-year run for a Las Vegas magic show must be deemed an unqualified success.

Criss Angel casino chip

Undeniable.

Back in 2016, it was being reported more than four million guests had attended “Believe” since it opened in 2008.

Because “Mindfreak Live” doesn’t close until late 2018, there’s still time to see it again if you’ve seen it, and to trash talk it if you never will.

In a ridiculously awful interview, Criss Angel has said he’s opening another show following “Mindfreak Live,” at another Las Vegas venue, and the cliche-spewing egomaniac reminds us all why he’s so easy to loathe.

Whether you love Criss Angel or hate him, he pulled off what many considered an impossible feat, a decade-long run on the Las Vegas Strip.

Share some Vegas. Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on StumbleUponEmail this to someone
  • MikeJenkinson

    I’m gonna say it: I saw his Believe show and really liked it. And I make no apologies for it.

    • Only saw the most recent version, but it wasn’t bad at all. It’s hard to change the perception of the early disastrous version once it’s out there. First impressions and all.

  • Bouldersteve

    After 10 years anyone who wanted to see it has seen it. Diminishing returns at this point. Even good shows cannot last forever.

  • Mako10

    10 years already?!??! dayyyum, i remember watching his TV show.

    just googled it…he’s 50 years old. damn he looks good.

  • skeptic555

    Couple thoughts: I have to assume MANY of the people hating on the show have never seen it. Kind of like Carrot Top (who was freaking AWESOME) – it just became a thing to do. Personally, I saw it in previews (and it was NOT a happy CIrque and magic mashup), and again after its first re-tooling/de-cirqueification. Never went back after the second re-tooling. It was not a great cirque show, and decidedly not a great magic show…but it wasnt NEARLY as bad as people would have you beLIEve. It was hurt by the douchiness of the performer, and the OBVIOUSLY piped in crowd noise, and – for a magic nut like me – the fact he stole a number of people’s effects without credit or apparent permission. That’s just not cool in the magic capitol of the world. Shame, really.

    • Thanks for your comment. D’oh, I meant to include the trick stealing in my story. He’s a pariah in the magic community for those shady practices. They piped in crowd noises? Like applause? Laughter? I’ve never heard that!

      • skeptic555

        It was fairly apparent after the first re-tooling that people were largely sitting and applauding politely, but you could hear raucous cheering at a level not commensurate with the crowd size… or reaction.
        Similarly, If you’ve ever sat front row at Copperfield (whose show is truly excellent) the ushers come thru and tell you that David “might do an extra thing at the end IF there is a great reaction – so be sure to jump up and start a standing ovation – everyone else will join in!” It’s just insulting.

        • Amazing. Hadn’t heard that! Classic.

        • Photoncounter

          I’ve met Criss in socially many times. He’s worked hard to get where he is. Others steal his illusions without attribute, virtually all magicians are guilty of this. But, what do you expect? A citation of all the magicians and illusionists who performed certain effects right before each act? That would be unacceptable to the audience.

          I wish him well in his next venture.

          Copperfield is a tool and a sleaze (watch how he interacts with female audience members). His close up is good but his illusions are mechanical and easy to detect to a trained eye.

          • skeptic555

            What Criss is expected to do is LICENSE the illusions – or, were he better liked personally – ask for permission to use someone else’s invention and/or intellectual property, which is often granted if the original inventor is no longer performing it. If others have appropriated his material – and I have not heard that claim – that still doesn’t make it right for him to do so. There has to be a reason so many refuse to work with him.

            I don’t love the way DC interacts with any audience member (women and non-english speakers especially), but his worst illusion of all is that hair hat on his noggin. Dude has hundreds of millions – that’s the best toupee money can buy?

          • Photoncounter

            Isn’t that a slippery slope, though? Every budding young magician who uses a Stebbins stacked deck for an effect at a kid’s $200 birthday gig would have to pay a fee to whom? Si Stebbin’s estate? What about every time we do an Elmsley Count? How much and where do you send the money?

            I know Jeff McBride has been ripped off big time with his art (fantastic magician if you know him!) but few have the economic resources to legally pursue the unscrupulous. Shaming works within the magic community as most are hard working and honorable but it doesn’t affect public ticket sales as the general public doesn’t care. SAM/IBM work very hard to keep the art alive but the fact is it’s nowhere near as popular as it was. Look around at your next Magic Convention, count how many attendees are NOT older than 70. It’s an aging industry in many ways.

            In my opinion for magic to survive as an art we have to celebrate the good and tolerate the less honorable in the profession. Few good ones make it to the top. Some go out at the top of their careers (Lance Burton). I suspect Criss won’t see the fame he once had for many reasons.

          • skeptic555

            We are mostly in agreement here. Some moves – which are different than manufactured, marketed or sold effects – are in the public domain. That’s different from replicating a trick in the working repertoire of a Cyril Takayama, for example. A number of years back, my parents were on a cruise, and saw a magician “that did a thing with masks!” Knowing I was a magic fan, they bought his VHS tape (yes, a LOT of years back). It was NOT McBride, but it was pretty much his act, beat for beat. I contacted Jeff, and mailed the tape to him. I don’t know if he pursued it, but I got a nice package of signed McBride gear back in the mail as a thank you. Teller famously copyrighted his “Shadows” bit as a pantomime, and later won a lawsuit (at considerable cost, i’m sure) when someone copied it. This has been endlessly debated, as you know. No easy answers, other than of course the nearly universe agreement that Criss is not, in fact, very popular or very respected as a performer or a person.

          • Photoncounter

            The key term is “copyright” and we wholeheartedly agree here. I make my living in an obscure branch of Physics and have protected my intellectual property through patents and other measures. Jeff’s mask routine never bores me no matter how many times I see it but how would you copyright every move? Would the copyright have to divulge all the moves? Would that copyright be valid in South Africa or any other country? Would every magician have to go through the legal system of every country to protect their property? Music is easy to copyright. You write down the words and the score. Magic and illusion? Not so easy!

            I’m disgusted by those who steal as you are and some effects and props may have patents, giving the inventor protection in their own country. I’m also disgusted by the dissemination of illusion “secrets” (magic tricks revealed). It cheapens the art.

            There is a big difference between a persons stage personality and when you get to know them offline. Politicians pander to the voters who support them. Entertainers do likewise.

            Best wishes to all for the Holidays! I hope 2017 was great for you and that 2018 will be even better!

          • Well said.

          • Manybar Goatfish

            The ultimate travesty will occur when Copperfield walks onto the stage with a toupee fashioned after Criss Angel’s dirty mop.

          • Bouldersteve

            Despite all the advancements made in cosmetic surgery today”s toupee is no better than the ones from the seventies. No different than putting a dead squirrel on your head.

          • Vegasallen

            While I haven’t see the latest version if Angel’s show, I did see BeLIEve.

            EVERY illusion in the show I saw was done previously by other magicians. That includes the 2 or 3 variations of Houdini’s Metamorphosis. Also the disappearance from the stage and the reappearance in the audience was ok but performed by a whole bunch of people.

            So at least in the performance I saw, there was nothing to steal from Angel since nothing was original.

    • Misslaydj

      carrot top is BEND OVERRRR FUNNNYY. Real TEARSSS funny!!!

  • How is it possible that this story was not first reported on Vital Vegas?