Wayne Newton celebrates 60 years in Las Vegas with new show

Combined Shape

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Wayne Newton dropped out of high school his junior year to perform with his brother at a Las Vegas hotel. It was 1959, and he was too young to spend his breaks at the casino and too broke to eat dinner there.

Six decades later — with more than 30,000 live shows on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip alone — Newton is kicking off a new series of shows in the gambling mecca.

“Mr. Las Vegas” will mark his 60th anniversary with a return to Caesars Palace casino-resort. His show starts Monday with dates scheduled through May.

“It’s hard for me to articulate, much less think about it,” Newton told The Associated Press, referring to the anniversary. “I was here when Caesars (Palace) was built. This hotel for me has always represented the flagship of the Strip.”

The “Danke Schoen” crooner will be backed by a live band during his “Wayne Newton: Up Close and Personal” shows. He will perform some of his favorite tunes and share personal career highlights through songs, film clips, anecdotes and questions from the audience.

Here's Who Qualifies for Government to Pay for Their Internet

Newton’s show was previously at a showroom at Bally’s casino-resort, but it ended in December as the venue shifted toward magic acts. The planned shows at Caesars will be at a showroom for 165 people, providing a more intimate setting.

Newton, 76, asked the casino operator to lift the venue’s age restriction to allow young people to attend.

“I promised myself when I left the lounges that I would never be in a room again that had those kinds of restrictions. There’s nothing in our show that would offend anyone, even the youngsters,” Newton said. “That doesn’t mean that the show is geared to particularly that group, but it is geared not to exclude that group demographically.”

Newton’s success in Las Vegas began when a two-week tryout at the Fremont Hotel and Casino turned into lounge act of six shows per night, six nights a week for nearly a year. Newton earned national fame after a 1962 television appearance on “The Jackie Gleason Show.”

He split with his brother, Jerry, in 1972 and continued to perform on his own. He soon became known as Las Vegas’ hottest entertainer, signing a contract to work 36 weeks a year for Howard Hughes’ Summa hotels and often working more than 40 weeks a year in the city, where he built a ranch home and raised prize Arabian horses.

Caesars Entertainment estimates Newton has performed for more than 40 million fans over the past six decades. Along the way, he saw Las Vegas’ transformation from a gambling oasis to a glitzy destination with corporate-owned mega casino-resorts that have world-class dining, shopping areas and entertainment venues that sign superstars for extended engagements known as residencies.

Newton’s multimillion-dollar agreement with the since-imploded Stardust casino-hotel in 1999 is considered among the first headliner residencies.

Newton said he misses old Las Vegas’s personal approach with the public. In his show, he makes sure that is not lost.

“Part of what I do, and I’ve always done, is I want to feel what they are feeling. I want to think what they are thinking,” Newton said.

Officials Confirm Another Fatal Crash Involving Tesla's Autopilot After Car Runs Into Overturned Semi

“I don’t want to walk on here and say, ‘OK, ladies and gentlemen, I’m glad you’re here to hear the songs that are my favorite songs that I picked for you.’ I want to hear if they have a favorite song, they’ll let me know, and if I know it, we’ll do it,” he said. “For me, that keeps it personal and up close.”


Follow Regina Garcia Cano on Twitter at https://twitter.com/reginagarciakNO

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Combined Shape
The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands.
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
New York City