Wayne Newton: The Last Living Legend of Las Vegas’s Glittering Era

In the heyday of Las Vegas, names like Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Dean Martin, and Don Rickles shone brightly. Today, they are but grainy memories preserved on YouTube. However, one icon from that era still graces the fabled Strip with live performances: Wayne Newton.

At the age of 81, Wayne Newton recently announced that he will be extending his ongoing residency at the Flamingo Hotel until the summer of 2024. This remarkable run consists of 62 dates spanning from January 13 to June 12, offering audiences the chance to witness a living legend. Tickets for this extraordinary experience start at $82, excluding fees, and can be obtained through caesars.com/shows.

When asked about his long-standing residency during an interview with TODAY hosts, Wayne Newton expressed his deep connection to Las Vegas: “The residency is what I’ve been doing my whole life in Vegas… I live there, so why leave, because I’d have to get a job somewhere.”

Wayne Newton’s journey in Las Vegas commenced in 1959 when he was just a 15-year-old high school student in the Phoenix area. A talent scout offered him an audition, which marked the beginning of his path to stardom. Initially performing alongside his older brother Jerry, Wayne eventually embarked on a solo career, fueled by his first major hit, “Danke Schoen,” released in 1963.

Since that auspicious start, Wayne Newton, known as Mr. Las Vegas, has astounded audiences with a staggering 50,000 shows, entertaining over 40 million people.

When asked about his fondest memory of Vegas, Wayne recounted a significant moment from 2016 when he participated in the opening of the city’s T-Mobile Arena. Reflecting on the show he performed, he shared, “I decided to do a tribute to all those people, Frank and Dean and Sam and Bobby Darin… they were all friends of mine. I closed it with (Sinatra’s staple), ‘My Way.’ While I was singing, everybody in the audience turned on the lights on their phones and the lighting guy turned off the lights. I was crying.”

Wayne Newton’s current performances showcase his versatile musical talents, including playing over 13 instruments, such as the fiddle. Despite his musical prowess, one thing he avoids is karaoke, due to his perfect pitch. He explained, “If anyone is singing around me who is not on tune, it’s pain. I do not karaoke because I could not last through it.”

During his shows, Wayne Newton intersperses musical interludes with anecdotes from his six-decade-plus career, reminiscing about friends who have since passed away. Videos play, featuring Wayne with luminaries like Jack Benny, Jackie Gleason, Elvis, Sinatra and the Rat Pack, and Ed Sullivan. A medley paying tribute to the late Glen Campbell is also part of the performance.

Wayne Newton’s show has become a “bucket list” experience for those seeking a journey back in time. He revealed that even younger audiences, especially young men, have been increasingly drawn to his performances, wanting to capture a taste of the Las Vegas experience as it once was.

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