“I have to stand tall and strong because this is my way of living: Stand tall, be positive, pick your battles, do the best you can and live for today, not for tomorrow… and know nothing is perfect, not everything you want will happen.”
From Grammy-winning hits to the loss of her husband, Céline Dion takes a year hiatus from performing, unloads her south Florida residence and gets back on stage at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas.
We can all relate to Céline Dion from the memory of at least one song. With a 33-year recording career, Dion hit stardom in 1988. Her songs hit the Billboard Charts with powerful tracks such as the Titanic movie theme song, My heart Will Go On and other top hits including, The Power of Love and Because You Loved Me to name just a few.
Undeniably, her fame provided her with options but she chose South Florida’s Jupiter Island as a primary residence for years and after four years of attempting to sell, she’s finally unloaded her 5.7-acre oceanfront Bahamian-style compound. Today, at age 48, she calls Las Vegas her new primary residence, living in an 8,100-square-foot mansion in a prestigious gated development. On the strip, she holds down a lucrative residency at Caesar’s Palace, reportedly raking in almost half of a million dollars per show.
While this is Céline Dion today, she’s had a very dynamic life including a vigorous climb to stardom and sadly the loss of the love of her life, husband and former manager, René Angélil to Cancer in January 2016.
From humble beginnings in a rural French Canadian town, Céline has risen to international superstardom like a shooting star. She has been called the premier contemporary pop vocalist of the Nineties and has earned music industry accolades from around the world: Grammy Awards in the US, Juno and Felix Awards in Canada, and World Music Awards in Europe. The entire world has seen her literally transform herself from a gifted pre-adolescent into an unparalleled icon.
Born Céline Marie Claudette Dion in Charlemagne, a small town 30 miles east of Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Céline is the youngest of 14 children of a highly musical family. Her parents, both musicians, operated a small club and on weekends, the entire family performed and entertained the local population. From the tender age of 5, she sang with her siblings and quickly acquired the ability to perform live. Together with her mother and one of her brothers, Céline, now twelve, composed a French song, which would forever alter the course of her life.
The demo tape containing the song was brought to the attention of René Angélil, a well-respected personal manager. In January 1981, René was so taken by the voice of the young Céline, that he became determined to make her an internationally known talent – he even mortgaged his house to finance the recording of Céline’s debut album.
Dion began to receive recognition for her talent in 1982, winning the Gold Medal at the Yamaha World Song Festival in Tokyo, along with the coveted Musician’s Award for Top Performer. In 1983, she became the first Canadian ever to receive a Gold Record in France. By 1988, Céline had established a strong name for herself in her native province of Quebec, where she was enjoying superstar status, receiving numerous Felix Awards and racking up platinum albums. That same year, Céline won the prestigious Eurovision Song Contest in Dublin Ireland, where she performed live before a television audience of 600 million viewers throughout Europe, the USSR, the Middle-East, Japan, and Australia.
In September 1990, Céline released Unison, her first English album for Sony Music and scored a breakthrough US hit with the Top 5 single, Where Does My Heart Beat Now. Her international breakthrough came when she recorded the title track for the soundtrack to the animated Disney hit movie, Beauty and the Beast. The song went to number one and garnered an Academy Award and a Grammy Award.
Beauty and the Beast formed the cornerstone for Céline’s second English album, called simply Céline Dion. That album produced four more hit singles including Love Can Move Mountains, Water From The Moon, If You Asked Me To and Did You Give Enough Love. In Canada, the album went six times Platinum and set the stage for an incredible streak of Juno Awards.
On December 17, 1994, Céline and René were married at Notre Dame Basilica in Montreal. They had three children, René-Charles, 14, and 6-year-old twins Nelson and Eddy. The Grammy-winner revealed in an interview with CBS’s Mo Rocca after her 1,000th performance in Las Vegas, that Angélil was the only man she had ever kissed. After his death at the age of 73 due to a long battle with throat cancer, Dion said she feels he will always be present over the family’s holidays as she and her children go on vacations — a family tradition the family had until her husband felt too ill to travel. “He put something magic into that snow, into those mountains, and every time we go down, I go down with him,” she said. “My children go down thinking about him. Every time I take the lift to go up, I feel closer to him.”
Céline, one of the most immediately recognized, widely respected and successful performers in pop music history, has sold almost 250 million albums during her over 30-year career. She has earned five Grammy Awards, two Academy Awards, seven American Music Awards, 20 Juno Awards (Canada) and an astonishing 40 Felix Award (Quebec). In 2004, Céline received the Diamond award at the World Music Awards recognizing her status as the best-selling female artist of all time. In 2007, she was honored with the Legend Award at World Music Awards in recognition of her global success and outstanding contribution to the music industry.
Following a year hiatus from the stage, Céline made her momentous return to The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on August 27, 2015 with an updated residency show that is being embraced by fans and media and receiving rave reviews.
Céline at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace is a glamorous show directed by legendary Grammy Awards producer Ken Ehrlich and presented jointly by AEG Live and Caesars Entertainment. Dion’s modernized Las Vegas show includes her biggest hits mixed with timeless tracks by iconic artists that celebrate all generations and genres of music ranging from Elvis to the Bee Gees, Queen and Prince. The show features a full orchestra and band and is set to a visually stunning presentation designed exclusively for the 4,300-seat state-of-the-art venue. She also returns to The Colosseum with a new stage wardrobe composed of exclusive designs developed by her stylist in collaboration with Atelier Versace, Schiaparelli, Elie Saab and Mugler.
Definitely an unforgettable, hair-raising, must-see show!! Tickets for performances of Céline at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace through January 2018 may be purchased in person at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace Box Office or online at thecolosseum.com or axs.com.
By KC Anderson