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‘One verse? One verse?’: Cello star asks Celine Dion to sing

Updated June 24, 2024 - 6:46 pm

Celine Dion seemed on the cusp of returning to the stage Saturday night. But she politely turned down cello great Hauser’s invitation to join him in his sold-out show at Encore Theater.

Dion was in the audience for Hauser’s “Rebel With a Cello” performance at the theater at Wynn Las Vegas. The acclaimed Croatian artist asked Dion to the stage after he performed her epic, Oscar-winning anthem, ““My Heart Will Go On.”

“My biggest dream is to perform with you,” Hauser said upon introducing Dion, wearing a black dress, who stood from her seat to be recognized. “… One verse? One verse?”

The crowd roared, but Dion waved off the invite and simply bowed toward the stage. She was shown enjoying many moments from her seat, asking for a tissue during Hauser’s version of “Hallelujah.”

The sidelined superstar has not sung publicly since March 7-8, 2020, at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., She has since battled Stiff Person Syndrome, which has prevented her return to the stage. The documentary chronicling her struggles, and retracing her career, “I Am: Celine Dion,” is being released Tuesday.

Video posted by our friends at Vegas Revealed captured Dion’s arrival at Encore Theater and showed her interaction from the crowd. The place was packed for Hauser’s first solo performance on the Strip.

Hauser, legal name Stjepan Hauser, co-founded the popular act 2Cellos, with Luka Šulić. The duo have performed as members of Elton John’s band at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace.

Dion took in Saturday’s show with her sons René-Charles, Nelson and Eddy Angélil. Ticket holders for the sold-out performance stood and applauded energetically as she walked to her seat. Wynn Las Vegas Entertainment General Manager Rick Gray was among those standing to welcome Dion.

Dion and her sons met the cellist afterward. The artists hugged, with Celine telling Hauser she was a big fan. He answered, “I am your biggest fan.”

Dion then joked, “Let’s fight.”

At the end of the show, Dion was swarmed by audience members and posed for several selfies. Fans in the balcony hung over the railing and shouted, “Celine!” Dion also showed she can sing, even if off-stage. She posed for photo with the cellist and an unidentified woman, singing, “Just the three of us, we can make it if we try!” Hauser got at least some of that verse.

Who Was Where

Olivia Harrison, widow of the late Beatles legend George Harrison, at “Love” at the Mirage on Thursday night. Olivia Harrison authorized the orchestral score of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” in the stage show, the only music presented in the production that was not and original Beatles recording.

Harrison has seen the show several times, including the opening in June 2006 and fifth anniversary in 2011. The show closes July 6, ahead of the resort’s shutdown July 17 to become Hard Rock Las Vegas.

Hall monitor

Daryl Hall performed some hits and complained of the sound at his debut at BleauLive Theater at Fontainebleau on Sunday night.

The Hall and Oates co-founder deemed said the sound was “boxy, like I’m singing into a flat wall” remarking about the sound setup continually in his appearance. At one point, he called to an off-stage tech that he shouldn’t be calling these directives during the show.

Agreed. But the sound check (or, at least a piece of it) for Hall’s show was actually attempted in front of the paying crowd. This was after Elvis Costello and the Imposters finished their opening set.

Saturday night, Yellowcard singer Ryan Key complained of the sound during the band’s set, later saying that a member of the band’s crew failed to replace the batteries in his mic pack. He couldn’t hear anything through his in-ears, in other words. That does not bode well for live singing, or live listening to other musicians’ instruments.

Tease this …

A popular Ls Vegas musical production is about to go “next level” with a touring project. Keep your radar up for this.

And this …

An ensemble production with a magic through-line is being prepped for a residency run in a prominent topless club. The magic show, though, is not topless.

What Works in Vegas

Jewel and Melissa Etheridge at Pearl at the Palms on July 24. The double-headlining bill is less than 200 seats from a sellout. These two share the same band, a lesson in efficiency and proficiency.

Cool Hang Alert

Plenty of lead time for “American Trilogy: Tribute to Neil Diamond, The King and Frank Sinatra” at Aliante’s Access Showroom at 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. July 6. This is an expert roster of tribute artists, Rob Garrett as Diamond, Gary Anthony as Sinatra and Justin Shandor as Elvis Presley. Worth planning for, and also the drive to Utah. Er, Aliante, in its underrated showroom. Go to aliantegaming.com for intel.

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 X, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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