Singer-impressionist-comedian Danny Gans died early Friday at his Las Vegas, Nevada, home, according to the hotel where he was based.
Gans, 52, was voted Las Vegas “Entertainer of the Year” for 11 of the 13 years he has been based there. Hotel mogul Steve Wynn, who signed Gans to star in his Encore Theatre starting in February, said he was “devastated at the loss of our brilliant, talented and loving friend.” “One of the most unique human beings and entertainers in the world has been taken from us in an unexpected moment,” Wynn said. “A profoundly tragic event that leaves us all sad and speechless.” Gans is survived by his wife Julie, two daughters and a son. His long Vegas run began in 1996, when he gave up his one-man Broadway show and a tour schedule of 200 shows a year for a three-month gig at the Stratosphere Hotel. He signed a nine-year deal to play in his own 1,250-seat theater at the Mirage Hotel starting in 2000. Some reports put the contract at $200 million. When that expired early this year, Gans moved to the Encore Theatre, which sits between Wynn’s Encore and the Wynn Las Vegas hotels. The biography on his personal Web site said that out of college, Gans played minor league baseball for two years, until a career-ending injury. He then turned to entertainment, traveling for 15 years before landing in Vegas.