One of the best reasons to visit Las Vegas is the shows. Want to see acrobats set to popular music? Comedians? Magicians? Top musical acts and singers? A topless revue? Ranging from kid-friendly to filthy and raunchy, you can find it in Vegas.
There are dozens of shows to choose from. The hardest part is making a decision for a short stay. You can help narrow down your choices by visiting Vegas.com to see what’s on and how much you’re likely to spend.
If you don’t want to pay top dollar to sit up front and don’t mind waiting until the same day of a show, several discount ticket outlets line the strip to fill empty seats. You can find deals from 10% to 50% off on shows, dining, and more. I generally used these outlets on the same day of a show to buy tickets.
I have seen a few different shows on my two trips to Vegas. Here are my thoughts:
Absinthe is not for the faint of heart or close-minded. It’s a series of death-defying acrobatic acts with a foul-mouthed comedy show in between. I’ve never laughed so hard or held my breath so much in the space of 90 minutes. And with only 12 rows of seating, it all happens right in front of your face.
Held in what’s supposed to represent a low-budget circus tent in front of Caesar’s Palace, the seats are uncomfortable folding chairs, but the show is one of the best I have ever seen. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard or have been so awestruck by acrobats and jugglers before.
I thought it was pricey but once the show was over I felt it was worth every penny. But, as I mentioned, if you can’t handle sexist, racist, and filthy humor, much of it geared towards specific audience members, this show is not for you.
Penn & Teller
The classic comedy and magic duo of Penn and Teller have been entertaining Las Vegas audiences for years from their own theater at the Rio. I’ve watched them twice, with almost completely different acts both times.
They wowed me during both shows, even with the repeat tricks, and they’re gracious enough to spend time with guests by taking pictures and signing autographs in the hallway after the show.
My brother booked tickets to Terry Fator, an award-winning ventriloquist with his own theater at the Mirage. I wasn’t too interested to see the show when he told me, but once it started I found every second enjoyable.
One of the best things about the show is that it’s one of the very few in Vegas that encourages photos and video during the show. Another great thing is Terry’s commitment to US soldiers, which left many in the audience with a tear or two in their eye.
Rock of Ages
The big haired 80s rock musical, Rock of Ages, ran for four years until it closed on January 1, 2017. I watched it in 2015 when it was at the Venetian and had a great time listening to the music and laughing at the storyline.