Island Vibes

The Tropicana Laughlin is turning their pool area into an escape to the islands with the performance of Hot Lava, a Polynesian-style show on Thursday, Oct. 17 (gates open 6 p.m., show starts 7 p.m.).
The setting is perfect for such an event because the Tropicana pool area is something of an island within the center of the property in and of itself, with a large pool, spa, cabanas, landscaping and enclosure on three sides by the hotel towers and casino.
The island-themed variety show includes a full on troupe of singers, dancers, music and specialty acts that will whisk visitors away to a tropical paradise right here in the desert. Let the breeze moving through the swaying palm trees carry you away to another time and place, where all cares and troubles vanish, if only for a little while.
Tickets are $25 plus tax and fees and can be purchased at the Tropicana box office or by calling 888-888-8695 or visit
Things could really heat up when a master fire dancer brings that island spirit to light…

The Hot Lava Revue was created more than 37 years ago by native Samoan, Runi Tafeaga. He was just about to finish college in Waikiki when he was invited to watch friends perform in a popular Polynesian dance revue. The event was so entertaining he decided to attend rehearsals and learn to dance.
Once hooked on his own traditions, Tafeaga abandoned plans to become a teacher, quit college and went into show business, eventually relocating to Las Vegas more than 27 years ago, bringing his Polynesian revue show with him.
Over the years “Hot Lava” has become a success, playing major venues throughout Las Vegas, as well as other venues worldwide. Tafeaga has brought his show to Laughlin many times in many forms bringing versatility with his variety.
A Hot Lava show usually involves a cast of around 15-17 singers, musicians and dancers with some of the main singers having connections to traditional Hawaiian performers that stretch back to Don Ho and others. Tafeaga’s shows also include some fancy ukulele work and instrumentals by some of the best Island performers in the U.S.
“It’s basically a Polynesian show with cultural dancers from the islands, then we do have some special acts in there like the Polynesian fire dancer, and we have a world champion limbo dancer,” Tafeaga said. “It’s a cast altogether of about 17 of us this time.
“We’ll have six female dancers, about four male dancers, we have five pieces in the band and they are musician-singers and drummers. We might have some other surprises, too,” he added. “I’m the emcee for the show.
“We have about seven or eight costume changes, and the show is outside. The weather right now is beautiful. We’re hoping next week it will be nice,” he said.
Of course, there has to be beautiful island female dancers, along with “strong warrior dancers” and thus, the Hot Lava Dancers will perform the dances of the islands from such locales as Tahiti, Samoa, Hawaii and New Zealand.
“The main thing to remember at a Hot Lava show is we just have some fun,” Tafeaga said. “We have some comedy, lots of music, lots of dancing and, of course, fun.”


Tropicana Pool

Thursday, Oct. 17 (7 p.m.)

See “Showtimes” for ticket info