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The Magic Behind the Signs!

Part 1

Emily Fellmer, Collections Manager

 Las Vegas often lays claim to being the Entertainment Capital of the World. And the history of Entertainment in Las Vegas simply cannot be told without the story of Siegfried & Roy.

Roy Horn (1944-2020) and Siegfried Fischbacher (1939 -2021) performed together internationally over five decades – more than three of them in Las Vegas!

Did you ever see any of their performances in Las Vegas?

After finding each other in 1957 on a German cruise ship, [1] they bonded over their love for animals and fascination with magic. They decided to combine the two.

“I told Siegfried if he could make rabbits come out of a hat, why couldn’t he make cheetahs appear?” Roy later stated.

The duo began touring Europe, eventually getting their start in Las Vegas in 1967 at the Tropicana Hotel. They would next perform at the Frontier Hotel and Casino, the Lido de Paris at the Stardust, and ultimately at The Mirage. During their many performances in Las Vegas, they were frequently photographed for publicity and advertisement. Many of these photographs -- most of them taken by Bernie Yuman -- would be provided to local news agencies and channels to promote both their show and their conservation efforts.

Las Vegas One, a 24-hour television news channel, was one of the local outlets to obtain such promotional materials for local broadcast during the 1990s. Courtesy of the Robert Stoldal Family Collection, The Neon Museum is now the steward of more than 50 promotional photographs, ranging from pictures with celebrities who came to their show, as well as images of educational outreach programs and lion and tiger cubs. These photos would typically be sent to local news stations along with a photo caption sheet or press release to assist the media in telling the story behind them.

The Neon Museum’s mission is to collect, preserve and exhibit Las Vegas signs for historic, cultural and artistic enrichment. In preserving the complete Las Vegas story, we also collect ephemera, Oral Histories and photographs such as those in this collection, to help provide additional insight into the stories behind the signs. 

Stay tuned to our Social Media Channels and Blog for more to come, as we dive through the Robert Stoldal Family Collection!

Join us for a once in a lifetime experience by touring Siegfried & Roy’s Jungle Palace during our Duck Duck Shed 10th year anniversary extravaganza!

 

 

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‘Tree of Life in the Secret Garden at the Mirage’ Promotional Photograph, Bernie Yuman, ca. 1990, Photograph, Courtesy of Robert Stoldal Family Collection, The Neon Museum. 2022.025.021

Promotional Photograph, Bernie Yuman, ca. 1990, Photograph, Courtesy of Robert Stoldal Family Collection, The Neon Museum. 2022.025.022

Promotional Photograph with Roy in Ring, Bernie Yuman, ca. 1990, Photograph, Courtesy of Robert Stoldal Family Collection, The Neon Museum, 2022.025.021