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iLuminate in Vegas: Fun in the Dark

Our family has spent the past week on a road trip to the wild west. After visiting Pagosa Springs, the Grand Canyon, and Yosemite National Park, we are now heading back to Texas. But we stopped in Las Vegas on our way home to catch a fun and refreshingly family-friendly show called iLuminate.


Held in the beautiful Strat theater, the show played to a sold-out crowd. Even at 8 PM on a Tuesday night, the place was packed. And it’s little wonder, as iLuminate was aptly named the “Best New Act in America” by Americas’s Got Talent, where they made their debut more than a decade ago.


In a city known for scantily-clad chorus lines, the costumes in iLuminate are decidedly G-rated. My sons especially appreciated that fact. Their comment: “Even if the dancers had shown some skin, we wouldn’t have known it, as everything was in the dark.”


But the modest costumes are also thrillingly high-tech. Each suit is fully lined with wireless, programable LED piping, so the audience has no trouble following the action, despite the pitch-black surroundings.


Interestingly, the light-up suits do not remain static. The colors change throughout the program, flashing in rhythm to the music and shifting through all the colors of the rainbow in sync with the beat and with the other dancers on stage.


One minute they’re all turquoise, the next they’re purple, red, yellow, green, or black and white.

[Note: The website issues a warning about the flashing lights for people who are sensitive to such things. Stobe lights tend to give me a headache, but there was none of that in the show we saw. These flashing lights were more on the order of twinkling Christmas light displays.]


iLuminate has it all, including a great variety of music and dance styles. The show featured lots of hip hop, with some jazz, ballet, and break dancing thrown in for good measure, accompanied by pop music, Broadway tunes, blues, rap, and even one classical piece.

[Note: Unlike many shows I’ve attended in the past, the music for this one was NOT deafening, but the bass was strong enough to make the floor vibrate. If you are sensitive to loud music, you might want to bring a pair of earplugs along to soften the sound.]


iLuminate bills itself as “The most fun you’ll ever have in the dark.” Depending on your personal history, that tongue-in-cheek claim might be an over-promise. But I can easily believe this show is the most fun the dancers have ever had in the dark. From all appearances, they were having a blast every minute of the program.

I can’t imagine how they maintain such an incredible level of energy and enthusiasm night after night, performance after performance. Perhaps it had something to do with the responsive audience. There was a lot of clapping, cheering, and boogying to the beat, especially when cast members came off-stage to dance in the aisles.


And the enthusiasm didn’t stop when the final curtain dropped, either. The dancers congregated at the exit to greet the audience after the show, still beaming brightly as they posed for pictures with a long line of fans.


Want to glimpse a bit of what this show is all about? Peep the details in the video below. Or visit the iLuminate website for more information or to purchase tickets.

Tickets start at $49, plus taxes and fees, and dinner packages are now available. Tickets and packages can be purchased at tickets.thestrat.com. For groups of 10 or more, please email [email protected]. Children five years or older can attend and must be accompanied by parent or guardian 18 years or older. Free valet and self-parking is available at The STRAT Hotel, Casino & SkyPod.

[Note: We received free tickets to iLuminate through a US Family Guide blogger promotion in exchange for my writing an honest review of our experience attending the show. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.]

More Travel Ideas for Families

If your family loves to go as much as mine does, check out my book Pack Up & Leave. It’s chockful of smart tips that will make your next family road trip or vacation more economical, educational, and memorable.

Pack Up & Leave: Travel Tips for Fun Family Vacations

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