Fresh from her appearance at last week’s Grammy awards, pop diva Celine Dion took the stage on Sunday night in her first performance as a headliner since setting aside her meteoric career two years ago to start a family.
Dion, a French-Canadian who had a baby boy with husband-manager Rene Angelil, performed about a dozen tunes along with guests Destiny’s Child and Brian McKnight at Hollywood’s Kodak Theater, where the Academy Awards will be handed out later this month.
When she announced her temporary departure from the music scene at the end of 1999, Dion was the world’s top selling singer.
She dedicated much of the performance to new beginnings, a reference to her return to the stage and her new baby, both in through a slew of new songs she introduced and in her talk with the audience during down time between numbers.
“I’m a little bit nervous, right?” she said after coming out to a packed house of cheering fans for her first number. “I’ve got some butterflies going on. But I’m so excited to be back on stage.”
She then launched into the title track from her new album, “A New Day Has Come,” which is due out March 25. The album’s title track was released in North America last month.
The 33-year-old performer made numerous references between her musical numbers to her new son, Rene-Charles Angelil, born about a year ago.
A NEW BOSS
“I’ve got a new boss, a young boss,” she said, joking that the new boss in her life made her get up early and couldn’t even tie his own shoes. “No matter how hard I work, he still sh– on me every chance he gets,” she concluded.
Her songs also reflected an appreciation for new beginnings, with one an ode to mothers and another titled “I’m Alive” in addition to the “New Day” title track.
She was later joined on stage by Destiny’s Child, performing a spirited rendition of the Samantha Sang song “Emotion” from the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack.
Toward the end of the show, Dion also performed a number of old favorites, including “Beauty and the Beast” in a duet with McKnight and “My Heart Will Go On,” from the “Titanic” movie sound track.
Before the Sunday night show, Dion, a five-time Grammy winner, was in Los Angeles last week where she performed and presented at the 44th annual Grammy Awards.
Her last studio album before her hiatus was 1997’s “Let’s Talk About Love,” which has sold 28 million copies worldwide. As part of her gradual return to performing, she sang in public in New York last year to raise funds for the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center.
Dion has also agreed to a three-year stint as the headline act starting in March 2003 for a new 4,000-seat theater being built at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
Sunday evening’s show will be broadcast as an April 7 special on CBS.