by Don Church and TonySchillaci
The intimate and comfortable Cabaret Theater at the Mohegan Sun Casino is reopening with a comedy night – headlining the country’s hottest comics – in three-acts for audiences 21 and older every Saturday. The premiere at 9:00 p. m., Saturday, February 13, stars Kevin Meaney with special guests Billy Winn and Jim Dailaskis. Kevin has guest starred on “Saturday Night Live,” “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” “Late Night With Conan O’Brien,” and the film “Big.” His other TV and movie credits over the past twenty-five years include the hit musical “Hairspray” and TV’s “30 Rock.”
In an exclusive interview with The Resident, Mitchell Etess, President and CEO, and Tom Cantone, VP of Sports and Entertainment, talked about the casino’s partnership with Connecticut-based Treehouse Comedy Productions, which began in Westport in 1983. The original club featured then up-and-comers Rosie O’Donnell, Denis Leary and Jon Stewart.
When we asked Tom Cantone, who’s been in the entertainment business for 25 years – three of those years with the Mohegan Sun – how long the comedy series will go on, he said, “Treehouse at the Cabaret Theater will be doing Saturday comedy for least for the next six months, probably longer. There will be over 40 comics – most of them from the late-night circuit. These are headliners – top names.”
Tom added, “We’re committed to Treehouse, and we think the Cabaret is the perfect venue for comedy. This kind of adult entertainment is the next big thing … and we’re always looking for the next big thing!”
Mitchell said, “Comedy is interactive with the audience. The Cabaret is the perfect venue for these shows because of its size. The comedians connect with the audience, it’s an intimate space, and the performers get energy and excitement from the crowd.”
Speaking about crowds, we segued into talking about the Mohegan Sun Arena, considered by Mitchell and Tom to be ‘’the center for entertainment in the Northeast.” In fact, continued Mitchell, “We look at the arena as one of the calling cards for attendance at Mohegan Sun. In the last decade, for a venue of 10,000 seats or less, the Mohegan Sun Arena is number five in the world for attendance! The reaction all over the country to the arena is exciting – every major name plays here.”
In the six years that Mitchell has been CEO, he’s very proud of the way the Sun has managed through some difficult times. He’s proud of successfully avoiding layoffs, and feels that Mohegan Sun employees are well treated, and they remain loyal to the Sun’s mission of excellent customer service.
The excitement of visiting the arena and comedy at the cabaret is also responsible for encouraging attendees to visit the gaming areas, specialty shopping, the many distinctive restaurants, the resort hotel, Wolf Den entertainment, sports and other special events at the Sun.
Everyone benefits from the entertainment experience. For more details on, go to www.mohegansun.com.