Celine Dion, who has been out of sight dealing with a serious illness, is suddenly coming out in public in Las Vegas again — including an appearance as an audience member Saturday on the final night of Katy Perry’s residency at the Resorts World Theatre, where Dion had to call off her own engagement two years ago.
The sight of Dion in the crowd for Perry’s swan song managed to get even more attention than the attendance of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Other luminaries seeing Perry off, according to news reports or fan videos, included Cameron Diaz and her husband, Good Charlotte member Benji Madden, and Zoe Saldana.
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If Dion showing up for Perry was not a complete surprise, it was only because she’d been out earlier in the week, for a sporting event Monday at the city’s T-Mobile Arena that involved some home-country pride, watching an NHL hockey game between the Montreal Canadiens and the Las Vegas Golden Knights. Dion herself posted photos on Instagram of meeting players after the game, which was reported to be her first known public outing in three years.
The city’s leading entertainment columnist, Las Vegas Review-Journal writer John Katsilometes, cited Dion’s attendance at Perry’s concert as further evidence the singer is expected to be able to pick up her Resorts World residency at some point. “Dion was seen dancing throughout the show, giving fans and officials more confidence she can return to the stage in 2024,” Katsilometes wrote, adding that AEG representatives have already been “optimistic” about Dion coming back to the stage.
The columnist added his own predictions about a possible return on his X (formerly Twitter) account, writing, “I’m optimistic about her return next year. Maybe in the spring, even … Merely an educated assessment.”
Dion was scheduled to be part of the initial revolving lineup of performers, as heralded in a ubiquitous national TV campaign for Resorts World when it opened in 2021. An announcement from the new resort in October of that year said that unspecified medical reasons would keep her from starting her residency in November 2021 or doing dates into early 2022.
It wasn’t until December of last year that she officially announced she was suffering from stiff person syndrome, identified by the NIH as “a rare, progressive neurological disorder” with symptoms that include muscle spasms. In May of this year, a world tour was canceled. “It’s not fair to you to keep postponing the shows,” she wrote as part of that May announcement, “saying it’s best that we cancel everything now until I’m really ready to be back on stage again… I’m not giving up… and I can’t wait to see you again!”
Dion attended the Perry show with her 13-year-old twin sons, Eddy and Nelson. At the NHL game five days earlier, she was additionally joined by another son, René-Charles, 22.
The close of Perry’s show was succeeded by an image on the video screen reading “See you next year.” That’s believed to be less about another run of shows at Resorts World — she’s already had several extensions that took her up to 80 shows over the last two years — than her previously stated desire to record a new album and tour the world behind it.
Perry singled out her “partner, Orlando, for being an incredible support system and an amazing father” during the show. She may be seeing more of Prince Harry and Markle in the near future: the couples are neighbors in California, where Perry said she “can’t wait to get back home and play pickle ball tomorrow.”
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