Las Vegas theater used to mean glitter, glitz and a side order of schmaltz. But these days, Las Vegas musicals and plays have gotten some serious accolades.
In fact, writers, producers and the theater-going public have come to take Las Vegas seriously. Years ago, risqué productions like the fabled “Nudes on Ice,” ruled the Strip. And the mere mention of plays in Las Vegas would’ve inspired muffled giggles, or even outright guffaws. But now, you can take in some legitimate, top-shelf musical theater.
The Smith Center for the Performing Arts has done Las Vegas a world of good in this regard, bringing hit Broadway plays and musicals to a beautiful, nongaming environment. But the casinos have done their part, too, bringing in Broadway productions of The Lion King, Phantom of the Opera, Chicago, Spamalot, Avenue Q, and many others over the years. And there’s only more on the way, including Les Miserables and The Book of Mormon.
The one man show Defending The Caveman has been defining the differences between men and women for a decade in Vegas and plays nightly at The D Las Vegas.
It’s been said that one of the first signs that a town has grown up is its support of the arts. Las Vegas may never be accused of growing up (after all, having fun is the main source of its charm), but with its new and growing commitment to legit theater, this town is definitely coming into its own.