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Lady Gaga bandleader Brian Newman returns to Las Vegas Strip

Updated June 26, 2019 - 1:28 pm

Brian Newman is returning for his cool hang at NoMad Restaurant at Park MGM.

Lady Gaga’s bandleader for more than a decade and a masterful showman, Newman is back with his “After Dark” shows for 20 dates from Oct. 17 to Dec. 30. The shows start at 11 p.m. Tickets are $49 (fees included) and will be on sale at 10 a.m. Friday at ticketmaster.com.

Newman’s return lines up with Gaga’s next dates at Park Theater at Park MGM, adjacent to NoMad Restaurant. Gaga showed up, unbilled, three times at “After Dark” — including the night Tony Bennett sang with Gaga — and performed several songs in the second set. Newman’s two-set performances also showcases burlesque numbers and a splashy introduction with Las Vegas showgirls.

Newman’s wife, Angie Pontanti, is a former Miss Exotic World champion in Las Vegas and is expected to perform in a few of the upcoming shows.

Leading the party on trumpet and also vocally, Newman has plugged into the Vegas entertainment scene by bringing up singers Jaclyn McSpadden and Ariana Savalas and tap-dance ace Aaron Turner (in a truly classic moment) from “Postmodern Jukebox.” He’s also given guest spots to the comic clown character Puddles Pity Party.

New to the upcoming residency is a three-course, prix fixe dinner for $75 per guest (not including beverage, tax and gratuity). Seating for dinner is 9 p.m. only.

Newman appears onstage with Gaga in her terrific “Jazz + Piano” big-band production. He has been known for years in the New York club scene, headlining such haunts as The Oak Room, Birdland, The McKittrick Hotel and The Rose Bar. His most recent release, “Showboat,” is a blend of such jazz greats as Miles Davis along with Newman’s own influences, among them Nirvana, Beck and Thin Lizzy. He and Gaga originally bonded over their shared love of jazz. They have the same tattoo on their right arms of Miles Davis’ trumpet, from a drawing by Bennett.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His PodKats podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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