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Celine Dion’s ‘Day’ of reckoning

Singer's run in Vegas comes to a close

After 717 perfs over four years and eight months, Celine Dion’s run in Las Vegas has come to a close.

Dion’s “A New Day” hit its final note Dec. 15. Show will have grossed $400 million in ticket sales over its Caesars Palace run; another $100 million was generated by sponsorships and merchandise sales.

Deemed a risky move when Dion began her residence at the then-new 4,100-seat Colosseum in 2003, her show has rewritten the rules on headliner entertainment in Sin City.

“This has created a paradigm in this marketplace,” says John Meglen, president and co-CEO of Concerts West and officer, AEG Exhibitions, which promotes the Colosseum shows. “We have not changed from our model: the headliner with a creative show that cannot tour.”

Bette Midler will take over for Dion starting Feb. 20. She is inked to deliver 250 shows within 2½ years. Elton John will continue to do about 50 shows in 2008, and another performer — rumored to be either Diana Ross or Cher — will do another 80-100 shows per year when Midler and John are out.

AEG will also use the resident-artist model for the new Echelon casino-hotel, which is expected to open in 2010 or 2011.

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