F1 Race Forces Most Las Vegas Headlining Shows to Cancel

Posted on: November 12, 2023, 02:47h. 

Last updated on: November 14, 2023, 09:08h.

It’s lights out for most of Las Vegas’ regularly scheduled entertainment during F1’s inaugural Grand Prix, running Nov. 16-18 along the Las Vegas Strip itself.

ChatGPT created this image when asked to draw a theater whose curtains inexplicably open up onto the F1 Las Vegas
ChatGPT created this image when asked to draw a theater whose curtains inexplicably open onto the F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix track. (Image: ChatGPT)

Arriving at any Strip destination at a particular time will be a mission fraught with myriad unknown difficulties, as no vehicles will be allowed on Las Vegas Boulevard, Koval Lane, Harmon Avenue or Sands Avenue from 5 p.m. through 6 a.m. the following Thursday through Saturday.

While vehicular and pedestrian traffic around the shuttered streets will be permitted, it will be significantly detoured and delayed.

However, the real reason for the canceled shows may be less charitable. Reportedly, ticket sales for race weekend were atrocious since most tourists planning standard Las Vegas vacations knew enough to steer clear of next weekend.

Speaking of planning vacations, it’s also possible that one or more of the headliners listed below had vacations planned for next weekend that had absolutely nothing to do with F1. Though let’s be honest, the odds of that coincidence are long.

Following is the full list of shows going dark on race weekend — for whatever reason — as of Nov. 12.

Dark Nov. 16-18

Mac King
Australian Bee Gees Show
Spice Wanna Be

Wayne Newton
Piff the Magic Dragon
Ru Paul’s Drag Race Live

Donny Osmond
Menopause the Musical

Linq Promenade:
Matt Franco
Jimmy Kimmel’s Comedy Club

Carrot Top

MGM Grand:
Ka by Cirque du Soleil
Tape Face

Planet Hollywood:
Criss Angel

Penn & Teller

The Strat:
Banacheck’s Mind Games

Dark Nov. 16 Only

O by Cirque du Soleil

New York-New York:
Mad Apple by Cirque du Soleil

Treasure Island:
Mystere by Cirque du Soleil

Dark Nov. 17-18

MGM Grand:
Brad Garrett Comedy Club

Dark Nov. 18 Only

OPM by Spiegelworld

The Beatles’ Love by Cirque du Soleil
Shin Lim

Atomic Saloon Show by Spiegelworld

All Cirque du Soleil shows not listed have canceled their nightly performances Nov. 16-18 but will perform matinees.

Rod Stewart moved his Nov. 16-17 shows at Caesars Palace an hour earlier to 6:30 p.m. Likewise, Keith Urban moved his Nov. 16-17 shows at Planet Hollywood two hours earlier to 6:30 p.m.

The outliers here are Spiegelworld’s Absinthe at Caesars Palace and magician David Copperfield at the MGM Grand, both running their full regular schedules throughout race weekend. For Copperfield, that means seven entire shows between Thursday and Saturday.

F1 Cuts U2 Off, Too

U2 was available to perform its U2:UV Achtung Baby residency this weekend at the Sphere. It’s the Sphere that wasn’t.

F1 owner Liberty Media is using the inside and outside of the domed MSG venue behind the Venetian this weekend. F1 already had to lease the land since its track runs through it. So, it decided to lease the world’s largest LED screen as well. F1 will manage all advertising on the Sphere’s external display this weekend and hold a brunch inside the venue on Sunday — for invited employees and VIPs only.

U2’s last performance was on Nov. 4. They’ll return on December 1.

“We’re taking a little break after tonight,” singer Bono told the crowd on Nov 4. “We’re giving Las Vegas back to F1. If you don’t know what F1 is, it’s a sport where very tidy, lean, mean men and some extraordinary women climb onto rockets and try to stay on earth and not achieve orbit, something like that.

“A little like rock n’ roll, actually — less dangerous.”