Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017 | 2 a.m.
If the extravagant decorations and temporary ice skating rinks lining the Strip haven’t already brought the holiday spirit to Las Vegas, Mariah Carey sealed the deal at the Colosseum Thursday night.
The superstar’s first-ever Christmas show in Las Vegas—at the same Caesars Palace venue where Carey wrapped her two-year headlining residency over the summer—was an explosion of holiday glitz, complete with a dancing children’s choir, a visit from a gift-bearing Santa, several costume changes for the always fabulous Mimi, and sparkly snowflakes so big the Colosseum’s curtains couldn’t come to a complete close.
Carey expanded her annual Christmastime concerts in New York City into a mini-tour this year, and though she canceled the first few dates, she performed three shows at the Beacon Theatre before jetting to Europe for a couple concerts, then arriving in Las Vegas. When her winter wonderland stage was unveiled at the Colosseum at about 8:20 p.m. on December 14, Carey stood on a stack of brightly wrapped presents in a shimmering white and gold gown singing “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.”
For the next hour and 25 minutes, she performed other beloved Christmas classics and mixed in her own holiday hits as well. Her first big vocal highlight was “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home),” the Phil Spector-Darlene Love hit named the greatest rock and roll Christmas song ever by Rolling Stone magazine in 2010. Carey followed that powerhouse with an equally strong performance of “The Star,” the song she co-wrote for the animated movie of the same name that recently snagged her first Golden Globe award nomination.
There was “Silent Night” and “Joy to the World” and “O Holy Night,” and equally glamorous black and red gowns. Then, late in the show, a surprise. After Carey had teased a bit of “Fantasy” earlier before stopping the music and joking, “Wrong show! Sorry, not tonight,” she gave in to fans desires and sang some non-holiday tunes—“Emotions,” “We Belong Together” and “Hero.” Just when it seemed she had built the energy to its peak, she returned to the stage wearing a “Nutcracker” styled jacket and black heels, performed the biggest hit of her hitmaking career “All I Want for Christmas is You,” and it was all over.
But she’s back for four more shows. Carey performs at the Colosseum at 8 p.m. December 16, 17, 20 and 22 and more info can be found at thecolosseum.com.