Las Vegas is one of the most famous cities in America, and it’s no coincidence that it’s considered the best destination for entertainment in the entire world. Not only does the city attract millions of people every year, but the strip is continuously revamping itself to keep in touch with the various elements of American culture. It wouldn’t be too far-fetched to say that Las Vegas has the greatest selection of talent in one city, and over the last 60 years, all of the world’s best known and loved acts have performed at the city’s luxury casinos and clubs.

New York New York in Las Vegas
Las VegasWerner Kunz / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

So just what are the best ever shows to have graced Las Vegas?

Siegfried and Roy

Starting at the top, Siegfried and Roy were probably the most famous duo to take over the Las Vegas strip in the late 1960s. No other show in history has been as high profile or as endearing as this amazing magician extravaganza, and from their tigers and lions to disappearing acts, Siegfried and Roy attracted tourists in their thousands. In 1972, the duo was awarded the prestigious Las Vegas Entertainment Award, and they then moved onto the infamous MGM Grand in 1974.

By 1978, the pair even had their own day named after them, and in 1998, Siegfried and Roy were introduced into the Las Vegas Gaming Hall of Fame. Sadly, one of their tigers bit Roy’s neck in 2003, and in 2009 they performed their final farewell performance.

Wayne Newton

Wayne Newton, or ‘Mr Las Vegas’ to the thousands of people he entertained over his historic career, started his shows on the Las Vegas strip in 1959. The odds were against Newton as soon as he set out on his task of taking over Las Vegas, and he was told he could only take the November slot – the worst time of the year back then. However, thanks to his amazing voice, the Las Vegas locals came out in their masses to support Mr Las Vegas.

Liberance

Not only was Liberace, or ‘Mr Showmanship’, the highest paid entertainer in the world (at one point around $300,000 a week), but he was also the most iconic – he’s even got an entire museum in his honour! Liberace was the face of glitter and glamour in Las Vegas, and he installed a transsexual presence in a dominant metrosexual time – even when nobody knew what transsexual was.

Frank Sinatra

Upon Frank Sinatra’s death, all the hotels in Las Vegas turned off their lights in respect to their fallen hero. He may not have been considered the best of singers or stage performers, but his association with the partying lifestyle and high-rollers of the strip made him the most sought-after commodity in the city. There was always plenty of money when Frank was in town, because the richest celebrities turned up to buy him drinks all night long. After playing his first gig in 1951, and his final show at the MGM in 1993, Frank Sinatra was one of the most famous performers in Las Vegas.