Lady Gaga returned to the stage in Las Vegas for another run (12 dates) of her critically acclaimed Jazz & Piano show from August 31, 2023, through October 05, 2023. Performing her Las Vegas Residency at the Dolby Live Theater at ParkMGM.
Her last night of this run, October 05, 2023, was nothing short of absolutely incredible. From her vocals, setlist, costumes, connection with the crowd and the synergy with her band and orchestra, there wasn’t a soul in that theater that didn’t feel inexplicably alive that night. Making the evening even more special, at one point, Lady Gaga paid special tribute to her late friend, Tony Bennett, by playing his voice over the speakers to the whole crowd to introduce her, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Lady Gaga.”
As you arrive, you get your first glimpse of her incredible stage setup. Strings of crystals hung from ceiling-to-floor, as well as draped side-to-side, sparkle against a blue backlit background. Her white piano, beautiful tables, both stage left and right, adorned with black linens and small lamps. You feel like you have been transported into a true jazz nightclub and not just a concert venue.
Before she takes the stage, she and her band warm up to “Orange Colored Sky", a Nat King Cole cover that is broadcast live to the entire arena on video display screens. After her bandtakes the stage, Gaga arrives singing “Luck Be a Lady,” followed by “Steppin’ Out With My Baby,” “The Best Is Yet To Come,” “Call Me Irresponsible,” and she closes out the first act with her own hit, “Poker Face" on piano. It feels fun, scintillating and the crowd was definitely ready for more.
Her video interludes are stunning. They feature Gaga and her bandmates dressed to the nines, hanging out doing quintessential “Vegas” things, while Gaga narrates her love for jazz, the “greats” of jazz music, the history behind what makes Vegas the place to be and be seen, and her love for Las Vegas.
Her second act leaves nothing on the table and rivals the energy of Act I. She covers hits from greats like Duke Ellington, “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)” and “Do I Love You” by Cole Porter before she again blesses her Little Monsters and the crowd, closing out Act II with her own hits, “Born This Way” and “Stupid Love” on piano.
After another elegantly creative video interlude, Gaga again returns to stage for Act III; arguably the best of the night. Lady Gaga, being the queen of aesthetic, wearing a stunning red costume, turns the crowd upside down with her rendition of “Sway,” followed by “Rags to Riches,” which concludes with thousands of $100 bills with Gaga’s face on them raining from the ceiling throughout the entire crowd. She was then joined on stage by longtime friend, queen of burlesque, the “Italian Stallionette” Angie Pontani. Pontani performed burlesque during “Mambo Italiano” and it felt undeniably special to be there at that moment. Closing out this act is “O sole mio” and “Paparazzi,” a perfect decrescendo into another video interlude.
Her final performances of the night included “La vie en rose,” “Bad Romance,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” closing the night with “(Theme From) New York, New York.”
It should not go without mentioning the overwhelming appreciation she shows her band and orchestra throughout the entire show. Special mentions to her Maestro, Michael Bearden, Bandleader and trumpet player, Brian Newman, Alex Smith on keys (bravo for the instrumental version of “Joanne”), “Saxophone Steve" Kortyka, Donald Barrett on drums, and Daniel Fooseon on bass. As always, they were such a cohesive part of this whole show.
While we fell in love with the pop goddess that she is, Lady Gaga is at home playing jazz, and she is alive playing jazz shows. The connection and the feeling she gives the crowd is tangible and she’s purely radiant. These Jazz & Piano shows are worth it, time and time again.
1. Orange Colored Sky
2. Luck Be a Lady
3. Steppin’ Out With My Baby
4. The Best Is Yet To Come
5. Call Me Irresponsible
6. Poker Face
7. It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)
8. I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, Baby
9. If I Had You
10. Do I Love You
11. Born This Way
12. Stupid Love
14. Rags to Riches
15. Mambo Italiano
16. ‘O sole mio
18. La vie en rose
19. What a Difference a Day Makes
20. Bad Romance
21. Lush Life
22. Fly Me to the Moon
23. (Theme From) New York, New York