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The Beauty of Magic: Hans Klok & Pamela Anderson in Vegas

"My name is Hans Klok. That's a Dutch name. It means…'clock.'"

And that, unfortunately, is the level of wit you get in "Hans Klok: The Beauty of Magic." If the show had more diverse content the level of wit wouldn't matter. But, since it doesn't, an audience member tends to judge every element of the evening separately. 

For example, the newly refurbished theater is beautiful. The video screens at the sides of the stage are cleverly set in what look to be mirrors held in a person's hand, adding to the feeling that magic is all smoke and mirrors. 

And, many audience members were heard to opine that this show is "all about the hair." Indeed, Klok's blonde mane is not a casual do. It is coiffed to within an inch of its life so that it's distracting. One gets the sense that he is seeking underwriting from Paul Mitchell or Vidal Sassoon or, in this case, that "The Beauty of Magic" is all in the magician's hair. 

Klok is known as "The David Copperfield of The Netherlands." He says he began as a magician, but is now an illusionist. (If so, why isn't the evening called "The Beauty of Illusion?") Whatever he is, his act is confusing — a mélange of basically the same illusion done over and over with slightly different touches. 

For some reason Klok adds a chorus of singers and very able dancers who do a couple of large numbers. He uses part of the show to turn back the clock ("Klok?") to recount for the audience his introduction to magic, an introduction made by his father. Toward this end, there are actors playing the child Hans and his dad. Those scenes are probably the most enjoyable in the show and singular in the world of Las Vegas magic, but their storytelling is unfortunately lost amidst the singers, dancers and assorted assistants. 

Speaking of which, in the last part of the show Pamela Anderson is his assistant. (She replaced the originally announced Carmen Electra who allegedly had a clause in her contract prohibiting choreography that made her sweat or caused her hair to stick to her lip gloss.) Having her there is a very good marketing ploy. She brings a known quantity to an audience who likely has not a clue who Hans Klok is. But she adds nothing to the show, standing and posing prettily and provocatively while Klok does his thing. 

He is doubtlessly talented, but in this town where there are more magicians/illusionists than you can shake a wand at, any newcomer requires a better showcase for his gifts. Once that is accomplished, all the window dressing — the singers, the dancers and, even, the pin-up from Hollywood — may not be necessary. 

The few illusions we see lead us to believe the Dutch people we know who rave about Hans Klok and his gifts. We just wish they'd been more in evidence here in Las Vegas.  

Shows are Thursday & Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 7 p.m and 10 p.m. Tickets range from $39.90 to $113.40 (including taxes and fees). Go to www.ticketmaster.com.


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