‘This wasn’t our decision’: Cirque du Soleil forced by Hard Rock Las Vegas to close ‘The Beatles Love’ after 18 years

One of Las Vegas’ longest-running shows is about to go dark forever.

Cirque du Soleil announced Tuesday that The Beatles Love run at the former Mirage hotel will come to an end on July 7 of this year. The wildly popular show has been a fixture on the Strip for 18 years and was the only live show that was licensed to use the Beatles’ music catalog.

The Mirage is in the midst of a renovation following its purchase by Hard Rock Las Vegas. While the show was expected to run through at least the end of the year, officials say the decision to end it was out of their hands and they only learned of the decision late last week. Some 230 cast and crew members will lose their jobs with the closure.

“This wasn’t our decision,” Cirque du Soleil CEO Stéphane Lefebvre told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “As you you know, Hard Rock needs to take control of the entire venue and do some major renovations. So they need to get the show closed by July 7.”

There are no current plans to create a touring version of the show.

Love featured remixes of many of the Beatles most well-known songs along with the acrobatics Cirque is known for. It explores a number of themes, from the cultural shifts of the 60s to the band’s many personas.

It tells stories of loss, such as “A Day in the Life,” when a young boy, representing John Lennon, dreams of his mother and witnesses her death. (That song ends with a clock onstage winding backwards and stopping at exactly 10 minutes before 10, which is the time Lennon passed away after being shot in New York.) It also tells stories of hope, like the eternal optimism of the Nowhere Man as he looks for someone who will accept the simple gift of a flower.  

Riding throughout the show, though, is an overwhelming sense of optimism, joy and … well, love. Fans would return to see the show again and again, some doing so 15 times or more.

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