LAS VEGAS – Perched atop the performer hierarchy in Las Vegas, where she holds court in the Caesars Palace Colosseum, five-time Grammy winner Celine Dion could quite easily sit on her laurels.
But the 45-year-old mother of three is using her influence on new projects, working on a new album due out in October and co-producing the show of a fellow French Canadian songstress who is setting up shop across the street at Bally’s.
“I’m not looking to make friends in the business because I want to do my job, I want to have a good time and go home to my family,” Dion said in a recent interview. “But Veronic — it’s a different scenario. I’m not quite sure why. I want her to be my friend. I love her. I respect her very, very much.”
Veronic DiCaire previously opened for Dion during a 2008 tour stop in Montreal. In late June, she launched a two-month run of “Veronic Voices,” in which she impersonates 50 female artists, including Taylor Swift, Amy Winehouse, Whitney Houston, Carrie Underwood, Lady Gaga and Dion herself.
DiCaire’s struggle will be to rise above the stigmatized title of impersonator — something Dion said DiCaire can do because she “becomes” her characters.
“You’ve seen impersonators, you’ve seen men doing women, and women doing men,” Dion said. “Sometimes it’s funny, and sometimes it’s so exaggerated. We’ve seen it all. With Veronic it’s very, very different.”
If the show doesn’t take off, it won’t be for lack of a mentor. Dion wrote the textbook on creating a Vegas brand, filling up her 4,000-seat auditorium since she initially debuted there in 2003 and disproving doubters who wrote Sin City off as a retirement community for fading stars.
“We took a chance. It worked really well for us,” Dion said. “I don’t have to be here. The reason why I’m here is because I’m really enjoying being here.”
Beyonce’s father marries ex-model
NEW YORK – Beyonce has a stepmother.
Her father and former manager, Mathew Knowles, got married June 30 to former model Gena Charmaine Avery in Houston, Texas. The pair had been engaged for a year and a half.
Avery, 48, is a Realtor. Knowles, 61, guided his daughter to superstardom with the group Destiny’s Child, and later in her solo career. She released her father as her manager in 2011.
Knowles, head of Music World Entertainment, still manages several gospel acts, including Grammy-winner Le’Andria Johnson.
Knowles and Beyonce’s mother, Tina, divorced in 2011 after 31 years of marriage and two children — Beyonce and her sister, fellow singer Solange.