Concert residency

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The venue of Britney Spears's concert residency at the Planet Hollywood Las Vegas

A concert residency[1][2][3][4][5] (also known as musical residency or simply residency) is a series of concerts (typically of live music), similar to a concert tour, but only performed at one location.[6] The concert residencies have been a staple of Las Vegas Strip for decades, pioneered by singer-pianist Liberace in the 1940s and Frank Sinatra with the Rat Pack in the 1950s.

According to Billboard, Celine Dion's A New Day... is the most successful concert residency of all time, grossing over US$385 million ($454.39 million in 2017 dollars)[7] and drawing nearly three million people to 717 shows. This commercial success was credited for revitalizing Las Vegas residencies, which was always known as a place where singers go to when their careers are in decline.


According to The Guardian, the concept of a concert residency was established by pianist and singer Liberace with 1944 debut in Las Vegas.[8] Nearly ten years later, Liberace had his own show at the Riviera Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, which reportedly earned "Mr. Showtime" around $50,000 per week. After years of pursuing other projects in Los Angeles, he returned to Vegas residency and earned around $300,000 a week until he died of AIDS in 1987.[9] CeeLo Green held his 2013 residency, CeeLo Green Presents Loberace, as a tribute to Liberace.[10][11]

Liberace's 1944 debut was followed by Frank Sinatra with the Rat Pack and Elvis Presley.[8] In April 1956, Presley began a two-week concert residency at the New Frontier Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, following the release of his self-titled debut album. His shows were poorly received by the conservative, middle-aged hotel guests[12]—"like a jug of corn liquor at a champagne party," wrote a critic for Newsweek.[13] From 1969 to 1976, Presley performed 837 consecutive sold out shows at the Hilton Las Vegas, which has since been renamed the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino.[14]

Kurt Melien, vice president of entertainment at Caesars Palace, explained that "Historically, Vegas residencies were more a loss leader event – famous artists playing in small showrooms just to draw in the gambling crowds."[15] In the live music world, Las Vegas used to be known as the place where singers went to die, where they could earn a crust in their twilight years entertaining tourists on the Strip alongside magicians like David Copperfield, or Siegfried and Roy.[15]

Celine Dion revitalized residencies in the 21st century, with the success of her A New Day... residency (2003–2007). Her residency introduced a new form of theatrical entertainment, a fusion of song, performance art, innovative stage craft and state-of-the-art technology. She managed to popularize the Las Vegas residency as a desirable way for top artists to essentially tour in place, letting their fans come to them. Kurth Meline explained, "Celine was a pioneer without question. Twenty years ago, we couldn't have got someone the stature of Britney Spears to appear in Vegas. Stars like her would never have considered it if Celine hadn't paved the way. She changed the face of modern Vegas."[15]

Dion returned to Las Vegas on 15 March 2011 with her second residency, Celine. She performed her record-breaking 1000th overall Las Vegas residency on October 8, 2016. Many other major performers such as Britney Spears, Cher, Toni Braxton, Rod Stewart, Shania Twain, Jennifer Lopez, Mariah Carey, Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars, Calvin Harris and Backstreet Boys have followed and accepted residency offers. Their shows included Britney: Piece of Me, Cher and Classic Cher, Rod Stewart: The Hits, Shania: Still the One, Jennifer Lopez: All I Have, #1 to Infinity, and Backstreet Boys: Larger Than Life respectively.[16]


Las Vegas has become the center of concert residencies for decades.[1] New York City has also grown as a destination residency, beginning with Billy Joel at the Madison Square Garden in 2014.[17] American rock band Phish also performed 13-shows residency at the same venue, from July 21 to August 6, 2017. Bruce Springsteen held his 2017–18 residency, Springsteen on Broadway, at the Walter Kerr Theatre, New York City.[1] In August and September 2007, O2 Arena in London held 21 Prince shows.[18] From January to March 2009, Luis Miguel played a run of 25 shows at Auditorio Nacional in Mexico City.[19]


According to Billboard, Celine Dion's A New Day... is the most successful concert residency of all time, grossing over US$385 million ($454.39 million in 2017 dollars)[7] and drawing nearly three million people to 717 shows.[20] Celine Dion leads as the highest grossing solo artist of all time in residencies (A New Day and Celine).

Following Celine Dion, Elton John has become the second most successful concert resident performer, whose The Red Piano residency grossed a reported $169 million between 2004 and 2008.[21] Another top-selling residency was Britney Spears's Britney: Piece of Me, which began in December 2013 and ended on December 31, 2017.[22] Spears's residency has grossed over US$132million as of February 2017.[23]


  1. ^ a b c McIntyre, Hugh (September 14, 2017). "Forget Vegas, New York City Has Become The New Go-To City For Concert Residencies". Forbes. Retrieved November 20, 2017. 
  2. ^ Reuters Staff (November 17, 2016). "Newly engaged Ricky Martin off to Vegas for concert residency". Reuters. Retrieved November 20, 2017. 
  3. ^ Olya, Gabrielle (April 11, 2017). "Britney Spears, Beyoncé and More Singers Who Have Slimmed Down and Shaped Up for Concert Residencies and Tours". People. Retrieved November 20, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Paul McCartney 'fancies' O2 concert residency". BBC. December 21, 2009. Retrieved November 20, 2017. 
  5. ^ THR Staff (August 7, 2012). "Tim McGraw and Faith Hill to Launch Las Vegas Concert Residency". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 20, 2017. 
  6. ^ Ganz, Jami (March 14, 2017). "Las Vegas residencies: Here's your guide to summer 2017". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved November 20, 2017. 
  7. ^ a b Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2018. 
  8. ^ a b Cragg, Michael (19 January 2016). "Jennifer Lopez and the changing face of Las Vegas". Retrieved 4 December 2017 – via 
  9. ^ "Notable Las Vegas performance residencies". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  10. ^ "Cee Lo Green Takes His Voice to Vegas With Loberace Residency". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  11. ^ "CeeLo Green Talks Las Vegas Residency, 'Girl Power' Solo Album". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  12. ^ Gilliland, John (1969). "The All American Boy: Enter Elvis and the rock-a-billies" (audio). Pop Chronicles. University of North Texas Libraries. 
  13. ^ Guralnick, Peter. "How Did Elvis Get Turned Into a Racist?" The New York Times. January 8, 2004 [Retrieved August 11, 2007].
  14. ^ "Notable Las Vegas performance residencies". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  15. ^ a b c Bell, Chris (29 November 2013). "Why is Las Vegas gambling $15 million on Britney Spears?". Retrieved 4 December 2017 – via 
  16. ^ "Jennifer Lopez heading to Las Vegas for residency in 2016". Retrieved 2016-01-12. 
  17. ^ Chandler, Adam. "The United States of Billy Joel". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  18. ^ "Prince Kicks Off 21-Concert Residency With Epic Three-Hour Show". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  19. ^ "Billy Joel Sells Out His 30th Show at Madison Square Garden". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  20. ^ Inc, Nielsen Business Media (18 October 2008). "Billboard". Nielsen Business Media, Inc. – via Google Books. 
  21. ^ Devlin, Mike. "Sir Elton rockets back to Victoria". Retrieved 4 December 2017. 
  22. ^ Katie Kindelan (September 17, 2013). "Britney Spears Announces Las Vegas Show Live on 'GMA'". ABC News. Retrieved November 16, 2013. 
  23. ^ "Britney Spears Piece Of Me show top $ 100 million in ticket sales". Billboard. Retrieved 2017-02-03. 

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