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Wayne Newton Reacts to his Listeners Reactions

By Chuckmonster on Monday, 9th May 2005 8:57am
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 0


Unscripted. That's exactly how legendary entertainer Wayne Newton likes his live shows to be. He admits that for the most part, he doesn't know what he's going to sing until he steps on stage. But after more than 40 years in show business, he's had plenty of practice sizing up audiences. "I attempt to polarize everybody in the audience before I take them on a musical journey," said Newton, who will perform Wednesday evening at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts. "During the opening number, you know they are just looking at you to see if you are older, fatter, thinner or whatever.

"By the second song, they start to listen. By the third song, you can pretty much tell where they're at."

Much of Newton's people-reading skills have been honed in the showrooms of Las Vegas, where he has headlined since the early 1960s. The Norfolk, Va., native got his foot in the door opening for a comic at the Flamingo Hilton. Soon, he earned top billing at the casino and over the next few decades built a large and loyal following. In 1996, Newton celebrated his 25,000th performance in Las Vegas.

In 1999, the Stardust Resort and Casino offered Newton one of the richest entertainment contracts in history. He would perform six shows per week for 10 years at their newly renamed Wayne Newton Theater. Although Newton does not discuss the specifics of the contract, E! Entertainment's Web site claims the deal had the potential of paying Newton $25 million per year.

Newton credits his success to his musically diverse shows, as well as his philosophy that no one should leave his concerts without a smile on their face.

[ Wayne... we're talking... listen to us! Bring Back the 'Stache! - Ed ]



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