Lin-Manuel Miranda, co-creator of Freestyle Love Supreme, performs alongside cast members Kaila ...

Lin-Manuel Miranda stars in Las Vegas Strip show’s premiere

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“Freestyle Love Supreme” has found the magic formula to fill Summit Showroom at The Venetian.

Call in Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Miranda is in town as guest star in the premiere of his own show, performing Wednesday night and again Thursday.

Miranda’s opening night crowd was robust, in its size and also its explosive response to his arrival a few minutes into the performance. The roar was akin to Jack Eichel scoring a game-winning goal for the Golden Knights.

“FSL,” the improv comedy/hip-hop show’s shorthand title, is the production Miranda co-created in 2004, before “Hamilton” and “In The Heights” turned him into a superstar. Miranda worked up the format along with freestyle hip-hop pioneer Anthony Veneziale and director Thomas Kail.

The show’s method is true to the improv concept. The cast asks for suggestions on various subjects, the crowd shouts them out, and the performers act out a skit, on the spot. “FSL” is backed by a pair of instrumentalists (keys and percussion) and their own beat-boxing to create scenes unique to every night.

This format is Miranda’s home court, as it were, as he and Venezaile were known to freestyle rap during breaks in rehearsal. Thus was born a distinctively entertaining, smash-hit comedy musical.

But Las Vegas, as we remind, is a tricky beast. It doesn’t respond to nuanced productions so readily. Improv shows have produced an uneven history in town (“Second City Live” at the Flamingo in the mid-2000s, and “Puppet Up” in that same Summit Showroom five years ago, were shows where quality far outpaced ticket sales).

“FSL” is setting itself apart with its massively successful lineage, a must-see on Broadway that rolled to Vegas after selling out venues for eight months across the country. Naturally, invoking Manuel’s name and Manuel in person helps drive business. The new show is also honing its message, reinforcing its unpredictability, what Miranda describes as the show’s “beauty.”

Succinctly, no two “FSL” shows are alike, but all shows are wildly entertaining.

Andrew Bankroft (stage name Jelly Donut) leads the nine-member cast from his “Mic 1” position. Guest stars will join the cast in Vegas, but the core of the show is Simone “Sims” Acosta, Richard “Rich Midway” Baskin Jr., Jay C. “Jellis J” Ellis, Kaila “Kaiser Rözé” Mullady, Morgan “Hummingbird” Reilly and Dizzy Senze.

Bankroft’s role as emcee is to command the interaction with the crowd, distilling the information coming at him so his castmates can make a scene of it. Bankroft might remind you — and he reminded me — of Justin Timberlake’s best hip-hop/comedy moments when he’s hosted “SNL.”

Bankroft spends much of the show scouring the crowd, tossing out suggestions as a microphone inside a Nerf-like cube is thrown into the audience. He asks for things you’ve done that you regret. A woman shouts that she started a rumor in Catholic school that two nuns were “getting it on.”

“Wow, we are in Vegas!” Miranda calls out. Another audience member shouts about peeing in an ice machine.

Inevitably, the “What Happens Here, Stays Here” slogan is invoked. Things that should stay in Vegas? Cocaine is in the list. “Well, we’ll just start right there, with cocaine!” Bankroft shouts.

A woman describes an experience in her job as a teenager at Six Flags in St. Louis. She walked into a children’s house party while dressed as Bugs Bunny. A ceiling fan in this small home decapitated her costume head. This description was deconstructed as Reilly (Hummingbird) spun as the ceiling fan, and Miranda rapped, “All the children in the state/Were in this party …” as they witnessed this harrowing episode.

The show doesn’t allow any cellphone chronicling, other than the finale. Producers realize that allowing video clips to reach public out of context (such as, a hip-hop riff about lesbian nuns, or grabbing befouled ice) might undercut the show’s appeal.

Bankroft, his eyes darting, wants a couple to tell their story. Two women catch the cubed mic to say they are celebrating the eighth anniversary of their first date in Denton, Texas. Their story is lengthy, involving an hourlong kiss at a bar, as patrons continued to send beers over to the couple. Fifty beers, altogether, lined up for these lovebirds.

We learn, in this labyrinth, one of their names is Amanda.

Deep into the ensuing routine, Bankroft calls, “She has her own woman/she doesn’t need A-manda please her!” There is no way you’d predict that moment of brilliance when you are deciding on what to see in Las Vegas. But “FSL” is filled with such gems.

Manuel’s creation asks the audience to ditch the desire for specifics. Trust the premise, and the talent, and you won’t be disappointed, even when he’s not in the show.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at Contact him at [email protected]. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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