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See Hear Do: Frightfully Good Fun

A performer wearing a skeleton outfit and a red and orange headdress.
Clark County

Two weeks full of festivals, productions, and dining opportunities to close out your spooky season

Nov. 1-2

There’s no shortage of Dia de los Muertos festivals on the Southern Nevada calendar, but the abuelo of all of them may be Clark County’s Life in Death Festival. While attendees can simply observe the performances and art that honor the dead and poke fun at mortality, they’re encouraged to build ofrendas (altars) and read calaveras (memorial poems) made for loved ones who have passed on. This year, the county is offering a $500 stipend for each of the three best ofrendas.

The Day of the Dead art exhibit will be in the gallery from October 10 through November 22.

Oct. 5-31

Set in the dark corners of 1800s Paris, Vegas Theatre Company's Abandon pushes the boundaries of live theater, while taking audiences on a terrifying journey through the life and writings of the Marquis de Sade during his years spent imprisoned in insane asylums. It's terrifying, darkly humorous, and a bit strange — in other words, attending a performance is a great way to celebrate Halloween.

Oct. 26

True Vegas trivia buffs know that the city has a distinguished record of hosting auto racing events, stretching as far back as the 1960s. Unsurprisingly, organized crime had a role in organizing many of them, which is why it makes sense for the Mob Museum to present Racing and Racketeers: Motorsport and Organized Crime in Las Vegas. The lecture, featuring Randy Cannon (a motorsport historian) and Bill Weinberger (a former casino exec), comes to town right before Formula 1. Something to think about the next time you see road closures for repaving — like everything else in Vegas, the Mafia started it!

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Oct. 26, Nov. 9, and Nov. 16

Dinner and a show — count me in! Especially since this dining and entertainment combo is produced and run by UNLV Hospitality students, and ticket proceeds go to the UNLV College of Hospitality scholarship fund. Featuring Sinatra-inspired, jazz standard vocalist Tony Arias and pianist Keith Thompson, accompanied by a three-course meal, you can walk away with a full heart and a full stomach.

Additional performances November 9 and 16.

Oct. 27 and 29

"It's not easy having a good time," Dr. Frank-N-Furter quips in the cult classic Rocky Horror Picture Show, but that couldn't be further from the truth for Area 15's showing of it. Immersive and accompanied by live performances, led by Cirque du Soleil's chain acrobat Brandon "Axle" Pereyda, the good times are sure to flow freely. The shows will begin at 8 p.m. and midnight, followed by a cocktail party from 10 to 11:30 p.m. in The Sanctuary, with a special edition of Silent Disco and performer meet and greets.

Oct. 31

Little can hold a jack-o'-lantern candle to Contemporary West Dance Theatre’s (CWDT) Halloween Spooktacular. Including dance performances by CWDT, cameos from Dracula, and a post-show dance party and costume competition, parents can rest assured that it’s a safe way to celebrate the scariest day of the year.

Through Nov. 11

Scary musicals — an unconventional genre of theater that’s more common than you’d think. The latest installment, Troy Heard and Brandon Scott Grayson’s Scream’d, is having its world premiere at Majestic Repertory Theatre. Based on my experience with the original source material, the 1996 slasher flick Scream, I fully expect to laugh, sit in suspense, and (of course) scream. This musical will be showing on multiple dates; check the website for details.

Through Nov. 20

Religion, prostitution, and lesbianism — all controversial topics in their own right — come together in one early-20th century drama, giving context for the outrage that Sholem Asch's God of Vengeance inspired. Indecent, A Public Fit’s newest production, tells the story behind this play, one of history’s most censored, parodied, and praised stage works. Yet, God of Vengeance is only a secondary character in Indecent — the real story is about its creator, Asch, and his travails in staging the play, and dealing with the fallout the show caused him and his family. Human resilience, rebellion, and relationships are all center stage in this powerful, Tony Award-winning show.