With more than 44 million visitors each year, it’s no surprise that Las Vegas boasts some of the most interesting jobs up and down The Strip. From orchestrating eye-popping stunts for high-energy shows to creating monumental chocolate sculptures, these employees play a huge role in crafting the picture-perfect moments guests have grown to know and admire.
The Fountains of Bellagio Master– Guests often wonder who controls the dancing Fountains of Bellagio, one of the most iconic tourist stops in Las Vegas. From overseeing the huge water shooters that soar up to 460 feet to leading a team of specialized underwater maintenance divers, Curtis Briggs has run the operation since 1998. As the Manager of The Fountains, Curtis is responsible for putting smiles on thousands of faces. He oversees the daily functions of The Fountains as they groove to favorites like “Uptown Funk” by Bruno Mars and “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson. The Fountains have performed more than 210,000 times since Bellagio’s 1998 debut.
The Man on Fire – Cirque du Soleil is known for bringing the most intriguing characters to its main stage, and fire artist Ray Wold lives up to those expectations. For more than 5,000 performances in Bellagio’s “O,” Ray has acted as a clown set ablaze for three and a half minutes while resting nonchalantly in a lawn chair. The fire man has been with the famous production since its opening in 1998.
The Blue Pied Piper – Travelers can’t think of entertainment in Las Vegas without Blue Man Group coming to mind. Known for their big tricks and even bigger musical scenes, Blue Man Group would be lost without Mike Hall, the man behind the incredible instruments that guests witness year after year. As head of the Musical Instrument Technician department, Mike is the force behind building BMG’s famous equipment as well as maintaining the PVC pipes, log drums, string instruments, electric zithers, drums, and even vintage tube amplifiers. During Mike’s 17 years with BMG, he’s purchased more than 6,000 drum sticks per year, which is even more than Guitar Center, the largest chain of musical instrument retailers.
A Stuntman Fit For a King – Hear ye! Tournament of Kings’ Stunt Coordinator Ivan Caulier has been with the popular medieval production since it arrived at Excalibur in 1999. Working with a team of more than 40 actors and musicians, Ivan creates the high-energy choreographed fights and stunts such as the epic battle scenes with axes, swords and shields. Ivan has enjoyed many memorable experiences throughout his career with Tournament of Kings and has named all 77 horses that have participated in the production, dating back to the show’s opening.
Bellagio’s Chocolate Factory Sculptor – From a 400-pound chocolate piano for Billy Joel to massive chocolate skeletons for Halloween, Jerome Jacob – Bellagio’s Assistant Executive Pastry Chef – earns the golden ticket for creating magical moments with chocolate. To craft these jaw-dropping chocolate sculptures for the luxury resort, Jerome oversees a 45-member team within Bellagio’s pastry shop, Jean Philippe Pâtisserie. Jerome’s day-to-day focus is developing themed chocolate sculptures for special occasions. His favorite project consisted of a hand-carved chocolate horse that stood 5 feet tall and took more than 168 hours to create.
Deep Water Dolphin Diver – Ever since she was a little girl, Erin Wise has always wanted to work with marine mammals and as the Lead Dolphin Care Specialist at The Mirage’s Dolphin Habitat, she gets to do just that. Erin has the important task of leading a team of 11 trainers and ensuring they provide the best in dolphin care. While serving as the Lead Dolphin Care Specialist for almost 8 years, Erin has participated in thousands of training sessions throughout the Las Vegas valley dedicated to the care and research of marine life. The sessions encouraged Erin to find positive ways to fill dolphins’ bellies and hearts through stimulating activities and engaging programs. From teaching the dolphins to paint to preparing the trainers for a wet and wild day’s work, Erin works diligently to ensure the Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins have a safe home in the habitat.