Top 10 Shows in Las Vegas
There's an undeniable fact about Las Vegas that many people don't realize until they've stepped into the luggage area at McCarran International Airport – there is absolutely nowhere near a shortage of stage performances, shows, and musicals. Large signage looms over the baggage claim, ensuring tourists are well aware of what they can bide their time with during their stay. Billboards line the highways while marquees make sporadic appearances within each resort, guaranteeing that no matter what hotel you're staying in, you'll know of at least a dozen shows. Though New York may have Broadway, Las Vegas could easily take the title of America's “Most Theatrical City”.
You're bombarded with ideas for entertainment, which makes it difficult to decide which ones are worth the money and which ones aren't. The short of it is that every Vegas show is worth experiencing at least once, but, if you're in town for a short period of time, there is a selection of imperative must-see performances. The following shows, in no specific order, make up the “Top 10 in Las Vegas”:
- Cirque du Soleil's Zarkana
- Cirque du Soleil's O
- Le Reve
- Blue Man Group
- David Copperfield
- Penn and Teller
- Cirque du Soleil's Mystere
- Cirque du Soleil's Zumanity
If you're traveling with children, the problem with any sort of “Top 10” list in Las Vegas is that there's no guarantee that at least one selection will have adult themes. Shows like Chippendales and Thunder from Down Under, while certainly belonging of the “must see” label, are far from appropriate for children. If you're looking to keep your child entertained in Las Vegas, you may want to look into the pet-tastic spectacle of the Comedy Pet Theater. Watch in awe as an impressive group of trainers showoff what they're spectacular pets can do. As an adult, you may also find some entertainment in these “Kid Friendly” performances:
If you're parenting a child that you may consider a bit more “sophisticated”, many of the Cirque du Soleil shows offer wonderment and awe that they may enjoy. Simply steer clear of the adult's only Zumanity.
No Kids Allowed!
Speaking of “adult's only”, if you're traveling sans anybody under 21, the Strip is undoubtedly a Mecca for more mature performances. Shows like the aforementioned Zumanity offer an entertaining time perfect for couples looking for a night of intimacy, humor, and sheer sexuality. Nothing could get more sexual than a steamy strip show, though, which is the infamous Chippendales and Thunder from Down Under are big hits amongst the female crowds. These choreographed performances outshine shows at many of Sin City's local strip clubs, but that doesn't mean any sort of girl's night out gathering won't find pleasure in attending:
- Sapphire's Men of Sapphire
- The Rivieria's American Storm
Though it may not be a show in the most technical of senses, the Stripper 101 “course” makes for the perfect addition onto any Las Vegas-based bachelorette party. Through Stripper 101, gals will learn the moves they need to impress their beaus in the boudoir.
Don't worry guys! Though it may seem like the adult entertainment industry is geared more towards the women, there are some popular and some hidden gems to be found. Shows like Peepshow, X Burlesque, Bite, and Crazy Horse will make the perfect add-ons to a guy's night out.
Cirque du Soleil
Unless you've been living under a rock, chances are you have some semblance of knowledge regarding the famed Cirque du Soleil troop. This group is known world wide for their mystical performances, which typically combine fantastical worlds with death-defying acrobatics. Cirque du Soleil's KA remains to be one of the most impressive, with actors soaring over the heads of audience members in any level of seating. Newcomer to the Las Vegas assortment of Cirque shows, Zarkana, transports the audience to a magical world where a magician must search for his ability to perform magic. While most Cirque shows, including Mystere, O, and The Beatles: Love are perfect for the whole family, Zumanity offers an experience only for a 21-and-older crowd. Not all Cirque du Soleil shows revolve around the grand adventures. With Criss Angel's: Believe, audience members watch in awe as the illusionist's mastery comes alive on the main stage.
Any city filled with stage performances is sure to have its fair share of musical hits to offer. While the typical musical is seen as a snooze-fest by certain crowds, those found in Sin City are sure to put a spin on the genre that was never thought possible.
There's one musical in Vegas that is sure to run until the end of time. Combing the best of Sin City's classics and other musical greats within a modern setting, Legends in Concert provides fun for the whole family in a sort of musical variety show. From Michael Jackson to Garth Brooks to the infamous Elvis Presley, Legends in Concert is a show for the ages. Of course, nothing is more classical than bringing back the original quintet to the main stages of good ‘ole Las Vegas. The Rat Pack is Back is a trip back in time to when men like Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Dean Martin, and Joey Bishop were the top dogs in town. Learn the history of the Rat Pack in this musical interlude that will undoubtedly speak to all those old at heart.
Other must-see musicals in town include:
Looking for a Laugh?
Everybody is always looking for something to laugh at. While sometimes the funniest things we come across are purely accidental, there are those stage performers that know just how to tickle our funny bones. Long-running prop comic, Carrot Top, brings his show to the Luxor Resort and provides an evening of adult-only entertainment. The Amazing Johnathan, well not as widely known as his red-haired counterpart, is still up for bringing loads of laughs with his combination of “magic” and comedy.
Being a man is no easy feat, as is seen in the one-man comedy genius, Defending the Caveman. Women get the chance to go deep into the man mind and find out why they do the things they do, while the men in the audience simply get to nod and chuckle at every nuance that comes with being a man. Comedian Kevin Burke brings this real-life issue to the main stage and leaves no stone unturned.
With billboards lining every stretch of freeway in Sin City, it's impossible to forget George Wallace, best known for being dubbed “Mr. Las Vegas”. Wallace entertains audiences for hours on end, providing what one would expect from a typical stand-up routine - except extremely funny.
Comedy is in abundance in Sin City, especially with the following shows in town:
Mystifying audiences from around the world is the simple act of magic. Despite countless shows that have discredited certain magician favorites, there are those that are still left in awe when the magical performer levitates his vivacious vixen from an inconspicuous table. It's this wonderment that continues to help shows such as Penn and Teller, David Copperfield, and Lance Burton.
The comedic genius of Penn and Teller lend a hand to their wonderful performances while the more straight laced and veteran Copperfield aims to keep his audience guessing from the first act to the very last. Witness anything form a disappearing assistant to more interactive acts that call for audience interaction. Regardless of what your stance is on magic, you'll leave these shows feeling satisfied and entertained.
Magician Steve Wyrick may not be a name known all throughout Vegas, but don't just the quality of his sow on that one simple fact. Dubbed “Magician of the Year”, Wyrick creates a setlist of magician favorites with a twist. This illusionist works his “magic” to deliver an experience worthy of the Las Vegas main stage.
Dinner and a Show
The idea of dinner theater is one that seems to slowly be dying off - that is unless you're in Las Vegas. You can either sit down with the extremely dysfunctional couple of Tony n' Tina's Wedding and find out what it's like when two pure-blood Italian families get together for the wedding of their beloved Tony and Tina. As the show unfolds, you will chow down on quality food, buffet style.
Marriage Can Be Murder may not be the most uplifting title, but it's a must-see show on your next date. This interactive murder mystery dinner couples comedy with the suspense of solving a crime. Get sucked into a world of believable characters as you undoubtedly get all-too involved in the investigation going on. Do you have what it takes to find the murderer? Or will you be too busy chowing down?
Shows on the Go
Sometimes you're just not into the idea of sitting in a cramped theater for an hour or two while a series of events unfolds on a small stage. Luckily for you, you can still be in for the treat of a Las Vegas show – simply one that's gone mobile. One of Sin City's most infamous mobile shows / tours is the Las Vegas Haunted Tour. While, at its core, it is a tour of all the local haunts on and off the Strip, this haunted tour is headlined by a group that push it over the boundaries into being a show. Pitting tour guides in old, creepy outfits, the Las Vegas Haunted Tour is a spectacle for all interested in the supernatural and Las Vegas' “other” history.
Avoid the Worst
One of the best things about this site is the fact that each show comes with an assortment of user reviews. Who better to trust than those individuals that put their hard earned money into a set of show tickets? By checking user reviews, you'll be able to save your money and put it towards something that really deserves the money. For example, a quick look at the lowest rated shows will ensure that you avoid such mediocrities as Crazy Girls Fantasy Revue at the Riviera. Look a little deeper at the reviews, and you'll find that even impressive sounding shows like Criss Angel's: Believe tend to leave audiences in a dazed stupor.
Not pleased with your experience at a certain show? Let the guests of Exploring Las Vegas know by leaving your own rated review to describe why your experience was less than fulfilling. Never see a dull show again with Exploring Las Vegas.