Las Vegas Sun

October 21, 2014

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Joe Brown joined the Las Vegas Sun in 2008 as a reporter, critic and blogger focusing on entertainment and culture. A writer and editor with more than 20 years of experience in print and electronic media, Joe worked as a writer and editor at the San Francisco Chronicle and The Washington Post before gambling on a move to Vegas.

Photo: Le Reve.
Splashdance
Sunday, May 23, 2010
'Le Reve' is a fantastic wet dream
The heat is on, and the oppressive return of Las Vegas summer is reason enough for revisiting "Le Reve" at the Wynn.
Photo: The Jabbawockeez perform during the opening of the
Face the "MÜS.I.C." and dance
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Jabbawockeez are the Strip’s great white-masked hope
They’re the newest stars of the Las Vegas Strip, but odds are you wouldn’t recognize even one of them if you bumped into them in a casino or in a buffet line.
Photo: Conan O'Brien performs at the Pearl Theater inside
Conan untucked
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
O’Brien goes electric onstage - and gets months of unexpressed rage, comedy out of his system
While Jay Leno was bombing at the White House Correspondents Dinner in D.C., and Shane Mosley going down to Floyd Mayweather at the MGM Grand, Conan O'Brien emerged undefeated in his two-night gig at the Pearl at the Palms.
Photo:
Playing well together
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Nevada Ballet Theatre and Cirque du Soleil partner up with great results
"A Choreographer's Showcase" is an unfairly boring title for the annual collaboration between Cirque du Soleil performers and Nevada Ballet Theatre dancers, staged last Sunday at the Mystere Theatre at Treasure Island.
Photo: Kalin Morrow is lifted during during Nevada Ballet
No tutus zone: Bold new steps for Nevada Ballet
Friday, April 2, 2010
It's a 'Brave New World' for this increasingly strong and sophisticated troupe.
Photo: Barry Manilow at the Paris on March 6, 2010.
Barry Manilow's Paris occupation
Friday, April 2, 2010
Manilow is undeniably the best showman and biggest star abiding in this patch of desert. Respect.
Photo: Cirque du Soleil's Viva Elvis at MGM City
Review: Cirque repackages rock 'n' roll icon in 'Viva Elvis'
Saturday, February 20, 2010
Show at CityCenter's Aria is Cirque's seventh in Las Vegas
"Viva Elvis," which officially opened at CityCenter’s Aria Friday night after weeks of paid previews and adjustments, joins six other Strip-resident shows, and it’s likely to be lucky number seven for Cirque du Soleil.
Photo: Jason Alexander stars as Donny Clay in The Don
The bastard son of Tony Robbins
Monday, February 15, 2010
Jason Alexander stars at Planet Hollywood as “the world’s fourth-best motivational speaker”
An interactive, energetic 80-minute massacre of corporate cliches and self-help stupidity, "Donny Clay" is staged in the Chi Showroom on the second level of the casino, the stage otherwise occupied by the upmarket nudi-tease that is "Peepshow." It's ironic and a bit genius that this spoofery of success-industry swindling is staged just a few hundred feet from the business suites and conference rooms where this kind of nonsense takes place in awful earnest.
The Showgirl must move on
The Showgirl must move on
Monday, February 1, 2010
Bette Midler's exultant Vegas victory lap
As Bette Midler folded up her feathered fans - after singing the first verse of "Wind Beneath My Wings" to her orchestra, the next to "4,500 of my closest friends" - it felt like something more than a Vegas show was ending.
Photo: Pop phenomenon Lady Gaga performs Friday night at
Mutant showgirl: Lady Gaga touches down in Las Vegas
Friday, December 18, 2009
Lady Gaga out-Cher-ed Cher, made Cirque du Soleil and Britney's "Circus" tour look like county fair carnivals, and made New Year's Eve in Las Vegas anticlimactic. The first of the pop phenomenon's two sold-out shows at The Pearl concert venue at the Palms rendered all previous showbiz obsolete. Let's hope one of our Strip moguls has the sense and foresight to try to convince Gaga to keep her "Monster Ball" tour right here in Las Vegas - and make the rest of the world come to her.
Photo: Garth Brooks performs at Encore Theater in the Wyn
Garth Brooks brings a new showbiz paradigm to Las Vegas
Sunday, December 13, 2009
review: Country superstar opens five-year, one-man stand at Wynn Las Vegas
The triumphant arrival of Garth Brooks may be the first glimpse of the next Las Vegas and a new showbiz paradigm: the anti-spectacle. After a decade of ever-more-elaborate (and impersonal) Cirque-dominated, can-you-top-this? extravaganzas -- epitomized by Celine Dion and then Bette Midler -- Brooks and Steve Wynn are keeping it simple.
Photo: In a Wednesday rehearsal of
A Scrooge defused: This ‘Christmas Carol’ a winner
Monday, November 30, 2009
Review: ‘Christmas Carol’ wins over a Sun critic weary from years of holiday fare
Just before the clock struck 8 on a chilly Friday night, I slipped crankily into my seat, bracing myself to see “A Christmas Carol” on stage for what seemed like the bazillionth time.
Philharmonic shows poise in weekend aural safari
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
REVIEW:
Béla Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra has become a familiar staple for orchestras since it premiered in Boston in 1944, but it received its first Las Vegas airing 65 years later, at UNLV’s Artemus Ham Hall on Saturday night.
Photo: Frank Caliendo uses facial expressions and gesture
Frank Caliendo an impressive impressionist
Monday, November 23, 2009
REVIEW: Caliendo provides surprisingly original takes on some familiar subjects, including sports celebrities and George W. Bush
Does Las Vegas really need another celebrity impressionist? When the impersonator is Frank Caliendo, the answer is a surprising and emphatic yes.
Photo: Comedian Lily Tomlin resurrects classic characters
Hilarious, timely, personal: Lily Tomlin at her best
Monday, November 16, 2009
REVIEW:
Lily Tomlin is worried. “I worry,” she says, “about being a success in a mediocre world.”

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