Justify her Paycheck

The rumor swirling around London is that Madonna was in negotiations for a five-year, $1 billion deal to headline somewhere on the Strip. Ian Halperin, who’s written biographies on Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson and Celine Dion, broke the story without saying who, exactly, was going to pay Madge all that money. At $200 million a year, it’s more likely Guy Ritchie lets her direct Sherlock Holmes 2.

Dion’s show grossed about $400 million over five years and drew about 3 million people with near-constant sellouts. Madonna did gross $408 million in a little more than a year on her Sticky & Sweet tour in just 85 stops. That was selling about 3.5 million tickets, although in large venues as opposed to even a big Vegas room where she’d have to play a lot more dates to hit those kinds of numbers.

Even with $200 tickets, some casino would be lining up to hand Madonna several hundred million dollars for the privilege of having her cram into fishnets she should have retired 20 years ago and wobble around on stage. But they’ve got to do something to fill the time before Lady Gaga is ready to sign a headlining deal in 2040.

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Red Angels

Red Angels

The colors may be stark, but the Black & White Party is never boring. Instead, this major fundraiser for Aid for AIDS of Nevada (AFAN) remains—even after 24 years—one of the hottest events on the Las Vegas social calendar. And the 2010 version (9 p.m. Aug. 21 at The Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel, $35, afanlv.org) looks to be another spectacle of fashion and frolicking. From DJs to bankers to self-described “winos,” partygoers can expect to see the unexpected, with a diverse array of characters coming out to support one of the city’s most beloved organizations.