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Britney, Bruno Mars, and Beyond: the Best of Vegas Entertainment

 Britney, Bruno Mars, and Beyond: the Best of Vegas Entertainment

The lights of Vegas never disappoint. Photo by Matxutca (Cindy).

It used to be that people went to Las Vegas for three reasons: to gamble, to get married, and to see the Vegas entertainment mainstays: Wayne Newton, Lola Falana, impressionist Rich Little, and the Rat Pack. In 2003, Celine Dion breathed new life into the concept of residency when she took over the stage at Caesars Palace. And the rest of the world took notice. Since then, there’s been no turning off the spigot for top talent, and the selection of superstars on the Strip is making this the hottest summer yet. No matter your musical style—whether you’re a pop princess or a show tunes fanatic—there’s something for everyone these days.


Britney Spears performing in Vegas. Photo by David Becker.

For the Pop Lover in All of Us

“Britney Spears: Piece of Me,” which will run at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino through 2015, has the pop princess flying across the stage and belting out her hits in the middle of a ring of fire to sold-out audiences. Ask your concierge to work a little magic to get you into one of Bruno Mars’ performances at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas or snag a ticket to Shania Twain at Caesars Palace. Rumors have Lady Gaga checking out her own spot for a stint on the Strip.

For those who live and breathe dance, Electric Daisy Carnival returns to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway from June 20-22. With fireworks, light shows, carnival rides, and stars like Steve Aoki and Fatboy Slim, last year’s evening-to-sunrise DJ festival brought in 115,000 partiers each day. 


“Grease” and “Xanadu” fans will love Olivia Newton-John’s “Summer Nights” production at Flamingo Las Vegas. But if you still enjoy a good headbanging, there’s Guns N’ Roses’ “Evening of Destruction” at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Boyz II Men proves that the ‘90s are alive and well during their shows at The Mirage, while disco impresario Giorgio Moroder is opening a show to showcase all of the talent he discovered and the music he produced over the past three decades, including Blondie, Berlin, Daft Punk, and the late Donna Summer. And some of the hottest Cirque du Soleil productions focus on musical legends, with “Michael Jackson ONE” at Mandalay Bay and “The Beatles LOVE” at the The Mirage (and yes, Cirque purists can still see crowd-pleasers like “O” at Bellagio and “KA” at MGM Grand).


Cirque de Soleil performing KA. Photo by Joe Cavarath.

Magic, Broadway and More

Vegas may be the only place a grown man can admit he really wants to see a magic show. Try out Penn & Teller’s show at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino or Criss Angel’s “Believe” at Luxor. Or there’s the pre-dinner show option at Nathan Burton’s Comedy Magic in Planet Hollywood’s Miracle Mile Shops.


Penn and Teller performing at Rio. Photo courtesy of Rio.

But sometimes you just want a good laugh. Headliners at Vegas’ casino showrooms and comedy clubs include all the big names: Jerry Seinfeld, Chelsea Handler, Ray Romano, Kevin James, Kathy Griffin, Daniel Tosh, Jay Leno, Rita Rudner, Tim Allen, and David Spade. That’s just to name a few. 

If you prefer a Broadway show, go see “The Book of Mormon” during its four-week run downtown at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts from June 10 to July 6. “Ghost: The Musical” hits the Smith Center in August. And if you can’t help singing along, join the audience loving the songs of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons at “Jersey Boys” at Paris Las Vegas or ABBA at “Mamma Mia!” at Tropicana Las Vegas.

Unique-to-Vegas production shows include the Palazzo’s high-flying “Panda!” production, which features Chinese acrobats as dancing pandas, and Wynn Las Vegas’ similarly high-flying “Le Rêve—The Dream,” which takes spectators into a dream world of water and romance and mystery.  

Grab seats at adult cabaret shows like Rose. Rabbit. Lie supper club at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Spiegelworld, the creative force behind Rose. Rabbit. Lie, also enjoys shocking crowds at “Absinthe,” a raunchy circus show in a tent outside Caesars Palace.


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