Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013 | 4:31 p.m.
Headliners Donny & Marie Osmond have extended their Flamingo contract, and the resort’s legendary showroom today has been renamed in their honor to mark the renewal. What began as a six-week flight of shows in 2008 turned into a five-year residency, and the siblings are now starting their sixth year on the Strip.
The renewal, as I earlier reported, will ensure that their top-selling production remains at the Flamingo through the end of 2014, but Donny tells me that they may continue past that with the options they can exercise. They will perform 33 weeks at the Flamingo here and an additional three weeks for Caesars Entertainment in Atlantic City.
“It’s a really exciting day,” Donny said as he used his cellphone to tweet a selfie of the newly named Donny & Marie Showroom lettering. He also told me that he was thrilled to be walking short distances again without a cane that he’d been forced to use after tearing a key muscle group in his backside.
“The doctor says I should continue to do physical therapy until it’s completely healed and strengthened properly by the end of November," he said. "That also means no dancing until then, too. Then I should be able to go out on our Christmas tour and be able to dance again. We’re always adding new numbers and new routines to the show, so when you come back to see it the next time, it will be completely different from the last time.”
Marie added: “Sitting him down has actually been very good for him. It also gave us time to think about how long we wanted to stay on in Las Vegas. For me as a working mother who lives here, I couldn’t have a better job. I spend lots of time with my family here, enjoy my work with the show and can easily travel to New York or Los Angeles from here.”
Flamingo Regional President Eileen Moore said in presenting the duo with a certificate from Mayor Carolyn Goodman marking it Donny & Marie Day: “It’s only fitting that we rename our Showroom for Donny & Marie, whose show is not only sold out night after night but has been named the Best Show in Las Vegas. They have become one of the staple entertainers on the Strip, and they’ve truly become part of our family. We’re proud to have them call the Flamingo home and be part of our incredible history.”
Marie commented: “Donny and I are so flattered to have the Showroom at Flamingo renamed after us, which has been a wonderful second home. We are incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to continue performing for packed houses through 2014. Who would have thought we would still be here when we first signed that limited engagement back in 2008?”
Then she joked: “It might be his name that’s up in lights first, but you’ll note that I have the last word!”
Donny chimed in: “I knew that it would be the perfect place for us to perform as soon as I saw the beautiful Showroom — it’s a rich part of Las Vegas history. We are honored that they have named this iconic venue after us.”
Donny told me his plans to celebrate his 50 years in showbiz with a December TV special have been temporarily delayed, as he first has to record his 60th album to mark the amazing half-century achievement. “I’d originally thought we could do the television broadcast from here in the new showroom,” Donny said. “But that will have to wait until the album is completed.
“I have a blank canvas to paint with choices of songs. It’s just beginning to come together in my mind, but looking back over 50 years of music and singing with other performers since we were 5, I have unlimited choices. The biggest problem I have is that there’s so many. I’m not rushing it, but it will be out early next year.”
In their show at the Flamingo, Donny & Marie share five decades of entertaining in the nonstop, 90-minute show of music, singing and dancing. The show features some of their chart-topping hits, including “Puppy Love,” “Paper Roses,” “Morning Side of the Mountain,” “I’m Leavin’ It (All) Up to You” and “Soldier of Love.” Their showcase of unmatched harmonies continues today with their hit “A Beautiful Life” from their 2011 duet album.
We’ll have our full interview with the darling duo next week as Marie reveals her “disaster foods” venture and Donny introduces his home decor line of 1,000 products to be unveiled on Amazon shortly before its national retail rollout in time for the holidays.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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