Celine Dion's impressive production, A New Day, was broadcast live from The Colosseum at Caesars Palace as a CBS Television Special on Tuesday, March 25, 2003. Justin Timberlake appeared as the host of Celine in Las Vegas ... Opening Night Live!

     Timberlake greeted Celine Dion outside her dressing room prior to her stage appearance. During select portions of the broadcast, Timberlake moonlighted as backstage tour guide in between commercial breaks. Backstage clips and background rehearsals gave a glimpse into the immense preparation for the debut performance.

     Prerecorded footage profiled the creation, production, and choreography of A New Day. The Nevada television special was created and directed by Franco Dragone. Working as a team, the singer and the designer successfully blended their talents to present an unparalleled live extravaganza.

     Celine Dion was shown with husband Rene Angelil off stage, rehearsing on stage, and in behind-the-scenes sessions following the development of A New Day. One of the female dancers was fitted with a Candy-cam, recording a breast-eye view presentation of the rehearsals and backstage atmosphere leading up to the premiere performance.

     Characteristically, Celine Dion greeted the audience before commencing her program. She alluded to the specter of warfare by asking her fans to focus on peace and to try to have a good time. Dion sang "The Power Of Love" beautifully, which featured 30 dancing girls in white feather costumes.

     Dancing a lively step on stage, Dion was animated for "I'm Alive", and the audience got up out of their seats to clap along to the rhythm. A Times Square motif acknowledged New York City for enduring the 9-1-1 trauma. "I've Got The World On A String" was a musical tribute to the late Frank Sinatra.

     A massive frame with frames within set the stage for "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face". Dancers were floating above the stage like fairies before Dion was lifted into the air. She delivered an outstanding vocal. A video presentation of "One Heart" followed while Dion prepared for her next number.

     Dion picked up the tempo on "I Wish" as the audience clapped. The number showcased a dance break with a bellboy in a bright yellow uniform with Dion being chased by an army of fans. She eluded their pursuit and plopped herself down on her back at the front of the stage.

     Dion began singing her new single, "I Drove All Night", sitting front and center on the stage steps. She commented how comforting her baby boy is to her during international tensions, prefacing the song "What A Wonderful World". An acoustic guitar accompanied her vocal as a chorus harmonized with her.

     A gospel arrangement introduced "Love Can Move Mountains", which abruptly closed the program. Once again, Dion had her audience up and clapping as the dancers ventured out to interact with the audience. Dion, herself, walked out in front of her massive stage set to get funky with some lucky fans seated in the front row.

     Celine in Las Vegas ... Opening Night Live! aired five days short of her 35th birthday. Dion, Canada's international ambassador, was born in Charlemagne, Quebec. Her entertaining gala will continue live for an extended period.

     The Colosseum at Caesars Palace was built specifically to stage Celine Dion's A New Day in Las Vegas. Supported by a troupe of performers, musicians and vocalists, A New Day combines song with dance, theater, and technology for a state-of-the-art musical presentation.

A New Day program: The Power Of Love * I'm Alive * I've Got The World On A String * The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face * One Heart video segue * I Wish * I Drove All Night * What A Wonderful World * Love Can Move Mountains

RockonTour   Issue #19
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Live and Lavish from Las Vegas
Celine Dion broadcast launches A New Day

by Timothy Tilghman