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5 Vegas Shows to Watch if You're Not a "Theater Person"

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|by Reannon Muth |


Sin City is full of unconventional productions

Not everyone loves the theater, and that’s okay. Las Vegas is the Entertain Capital of the World, after all. There are plenty of activities you can do instead – like gamble, or skydive, or drink 12 Mai Tais by the pool. But sometimes you can find yourself in a bind. Maybe your girlfriend has been begging you to see that new Cirque show with her, or maybe your family has taken a vote and they’ve decided to see a dinner show together and you don’t want be left out.

Whatever the reason you find yourself contemplating a night at the “theatre,” below are five Vegas shows to watch if you consider Shakespeare a bore or if musicals make you squirm (Wait—They’re singing again? They just sang two minutes ago!).

Cirque du Soleil’s R.U.N is far from your typical theater performance (Photo: Matt Beard)

Cirque du Soleil’s R.U.N is far from your typical theater performance (Photo: Matt Beard)

Beatles LOVE or Michael Jackson ONE
Sure, both Beatles LOVE and Michael Jackson ONE are Cirque du Soleil shows, which means they’ll include all the usual Cirque acrobatics and aerial stunts, but we’ve included them both on the list for two reasons: 1. They’re consistently the most popular shows on the Strip and 2. They have wickedly good soundtracks. Even if you’re only a tepid fan of either the Beatles or Michael Jackson, you’ll find it hard not to tap your foot and shimmy in your seat during either of these shows. The music is infectious.

Absinthe
There are a few things that make this cabaret-slash-circus decidedly un-theatre like. First, there’s the setting—the show is performed in a big top circus tent on the sidewalk in front of Caesars Palace. And second, there’s the fact that the show incorporates some pretty dark and dirty humor (“risqué” is the word critics have used). Plus, any show that incorporates knives, fire and alcohol can’t be too boring, right?

R.U.N by Cirque du Soleil
R.U.N is the latest Cirque du Soleil show to land in Las Vegas, and to say that it’s different than the umpteenth other Vegas Cirque shows would be an understatement. Billed as a “live-action thriller,” R.U.N is 75 minutes of action-packed chase scenes, hand-to-hand combat, adult language and violence – lots of it.  It’s not your grandma’s Cirque show.

Opium
Opium is a SciFi-themed circus show that was created by the same folks that made the show Absinthe (so you know there’s no shortage of quirky characters and raunchy jokes). Just to give you an idea of the weird direction the humor will take, the show has been compared to a space age version of the film The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

JabbaWockeeZ
Like Blue Man Group or Opium, JabbaWockeeZ: Live at MGM Grand is one of those Vegas shows that can be tough to put into words, but we’ll try. The show features synchronized hip hop dance moves and dancers in masks and white gloves (think “hip hop mimes”). Yeah, we know – It sounds weird. But the show has won numerous awards and has been a mainstay on the Vegas Strip for a decade, so they must be doing something right. Google “JabbaWockeeZ on America’s Got Talent” and you’ll get an idea.

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