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Two kabuki festivals are headed to Las Vegas

"Fight with a Carp," a traditional kabuki show, will be performed with the Fountains at Bellagio as a backdrop

Kabuki entertainment is headed to Las Vegas. Japan’s Shochiku Co. Ltd. is teaming up with MGM Resorts to bring two Kabuki-inspired events in August 2015 and May 2016.

The Japan Kabuki Festival features a performance inspired by the kabuki masterpiece "Koi-Tsukami," or "Fight with a Carp," with kabuki star Ichikawa Somegoro. The show will be performed with the Fountains at Bellagio as a backdrop Aug. 14-16.

Think of kabuki as a Cirque du Soleil-type performance, complete with dramatic makeup, costumes and performances. Shochiku plans to project a backdrop on the Fountains at Bellagio.

The fountains will provide a “screen” where images will be displayed, while kabuki actor Somegoro performs live out in front of the fountains.

The story itself features two actors, a man who falls in love with a woman who is really a carp. She takes the form of a woman to get revenge on humans, who killed her carp fiancé.

Shochiku operates Kabukiza Theatre in Tokyo, which keeps the 400-year-old tradition on kabuki fresh by adding new, modern features.

The festival also hopes to attract more Japanese tourists to Las Vegas.  

Next May, a full-fledged Japan Kabuki Festival will be held at MGM Grand.

Info: Bellagio

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