Wayne Newton to bring act to Highland casino



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Newton to bring act to Highland casino

By Wes Woods II, Staff Writer

Las Vegas legend Wayne Newton, 67, will make his first appearance at the San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino on Thursday.

“I
guess it’s not too far from San Bernardino,” Newton said in a recent
phone interview. “I thought we’d drive as opposed to go by air.”

Newton will perform for an hour and 45 minutes to two hours with a live band.

“Our
show has been a work in progress,” Newton said. “I tell the band what
the opening number will be and maybe the closing number. In the middle
I call it as I go. I try to ascertain what the audience wants to hear.
That’s what we try to give them.”

With the recent deaths of television personality Ed
McMahon, actress Farrah Fawcett, musical artist Michael Jackson and
comedian and impersonator Fred Travalena, Newton said this last week
had been “one of the toughest weeks of my life.

“You hate to wake up to see what the program is for tomorrow,” Newton said.

Newton said he tries to look at the deaths in a different way than other people deal with them.

“I’m
not terribly religious but spiritual,” Newton said. “I think people who
live here go to a different place. So leaving here does not mean the
end of the spirit. I think they’ve gone on to a different place for the
rest of us to come.”

For his future, he is talking about possibly doing a television show that involves Howie Mandel or Ryan Seacrest.

“If
maturity teaches you anything, I believe it teaches you to enjoy those
things that you’ve enjoyed doing and do more of those,” he said. “Be
selective in not doing things you don’t enjoy. For me, that’s where
it’s at.”

Newton wants to continue doing motion pictures and albums.

“I
love working,” he said. “I’ve been doing this since I was 4 years old.
I want to work and bring people the best show we can bring them.”

He believes his work ethic has saved him falling into drugs and excessive alcohol abuse.

“If
I drank too much – we’ve all been there – or stayed out partying, it
never occurred to me I wasn’t going to work when 8 p.m. came the next
night.”

He said artists like the Rat Pack, Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson will never be duplicated, only imitated.

“The
cool part of the Rat Pack is they’re doing what they wanted to do. They
wanted to sing, do the shows and then went to party and that’s what
they did,” he said of the group made up of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin,
Sammy Davis Jr., Joey Bishop and Peter Lawford. “They truly loved what
they were doing.”

Newton has said in the past, he was not a fan of talk-show host Johnny Carson for making fun of his masculinity.

“He
absolutely was a mean-spirited person,” Newton said. “He absolutely
fooled the public. I always ask people, name one thing Johnny Carson
ever did philanthropically for anyone. And they can’t.” 

WAYNE NEWTON

Where: San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino, 777 San Manuel Blvd., Highland

7:30 p.m. Thursday

$40, $30, $20

www.ticketmaster.com