Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013 | 6 p.m.
It’s a great weekend for live music in Las Vegas, with options ranging from hip-hop heavyweight Jay Z to the festive stylings of Tchaikovsky with Nevada Ballet Theater.
Beyond music, you can chow down for a cause at a number of food festivals and fundraisers in town.
Here’s a look at our weekend best bets:
Saturday - Sunday: ‘Nutcracker’ at Smith Center
Nevada Ballet Theater’s $2 million flagship production returns to Smith Center with its dazzling interpretation of the beloved Christmas tale by E.T.A. Hoffmann and classic score from Tchaikovsky. Performances feature a live orchestra and a set custom built for the Reynolds Hall stage, with pieces including a life-sized Victorian dollhouse, a 30-foot Christmas tree and a flying rocking horse. Tickets are $29 to $178. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday and 2 and 7:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Friday - Saturday: Jay Z at Mandalay Bay Events Center
A week after Beyonce stopped in town with her “Mrs. Carter Show,” Mr. Carter comes to Las Vegas with his lauded “Magna Carter” world tour in support of his July release “Magna Carta ... Holy Grail.” At press time, tickets for Saturday’s show were going for a special $25 deal on Ticketmaster, with the regular admission price from $40 to $150. The show starts at 8 p.m.
Saturday: Carnival of Cuisine at the Venetian
Celebrate Winter in Venice as only the Venetian and Palazzo can with this tasty showcase of more than 20 restaurants from the two resorts, including Bouchon, Carnevino, Delmonico, Pinot Brasserie, Tao and Public House. The event will feature an appearance from chef Emeril Lagasse, with proceeds benefiting Three Square food bank. Tickets are $60 to $85, and the feast is 1 to 4 p.m. at the Palazzo pool.
Saturday: Third Eye Blind at House of Blues
Following a packed show at Fremont Street Experience this summer, ’90s rock favorites Third Eye Blind, with frontman Stephan Jenkins, return to House of Blues at Mandalay Bay this Saturday night as part of the venue’s 20th anniversary series. The show starts at 8 p.m., and tickets are $35.
Saturday: LV4PH Festival at the Rio
Join the National Federation of Filipino American Associations and food fest planners Red Dragon in the Rio’s east parking lot for an afternoon of culinary offerings and live entertainment to support the relief effort for victims of Typhoon Yolanda. The event will feature more than 50 vendors and food trucks and headlining performance from Luxor headliners Jabbawockeez. Admission is free; donations are welcome. The festival is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Friday: Black Crowes at the Joint
Chris Robinson and co. headline the Joint in the Hard Rock with their “Lay Down With Number 13” tour, their first since recently ending a two-year hiatus. The show begins at 8 p.m., and tickets start at $39.50.