Agua Caliente Resort Casino The Show Hosts Tony Orlando
Updated: Jun 27
When you travel to Palm Springs, California, here is something you may want to look into to plan your activities. The growth of entertainment venues in Coachella Valley took a great leap when the Acrisure Arena was announced. It accommodates 10,000 people for the hometown, Firebirds hockey team, and Live Nation entertainment productions.
Last night I had the opportunity to attend an event with my neighbor to see Tony Orlando. If you prefer a more intimate space, I suggest you look into The Show, located inside the Agua Caliente Resort Casino and Spa. It is easily accessible from Highway 10 in Rancho Mirage, on Bob Hope Drive. A three-quarters circle is filled with 2,057 comfortable seats, with no poles to see around, and state-of-the-art screens allow you to see performers' facial expressions no matter where you are seated.
Three Special Aspects of the Tony Orlando Show I Enjoyed at the Aqua Caliente Resort Casino
1. The Realness of Tony Orlando at the Aqua Caliente Resort Casino
Tony walked out, projecting an ah-shucks demeanor, and started with, "I am so happy to be back in the Valley, where I owned homes for many years." He shared how he owned houses and sold them for what he thought was a great deal of money. He recently learned a house he bought for nearly $500,000 and sold years ago now recently sold for $23 million. The audience applauded when he said he intended to make the Valley his home again.
What was so endearing, Tony did not shy away from the lows in his life. The stories he shared between songs were interesting and kept you engaged, and wanting him to regale more the stories that comprise the man performing before you. One sensed his 78 years had brought him to a place where he wanted to share: If you have a dream, do not give it up, but don't expect it will always be easy.
2. Obvious Love and Pride in His Band
We tend to look at a band and clap when the entertainer introduces them by name, and that is it. I have never seen an entertainer showcase his musicians as Tony did this evening. Not only did you learn their name and background, but each musician became an intricate part of the evening. We learned how his brother begged their dad to buy a piano so he could someday accompany Tony on his concert tours. It has now been 27 years of them working together.
Captain, an 18-year-old working with Tony for the first time, brought the house down by playing and singing a Neil Simon song. I couldn't help but think how incredible it was for Captain and Tony to make sure the younger generation felt welcomed in this genre.
Still, another segment introduced a gentleman on the keyboard and guitar. He had a severe stroke five years ago. This night his ability to sing in the voice of Cher, Willie Nelson, and Prince was incredible. His rendition of Purple Rain had the crowd swaying with the beautiful visual of the stage bathed with floating purple lights.
The other two guitarists and the drummer, with extraordinary vocal abilities, were also showcased in ways I had never seen before. Tony's pride in working with them was incredibly evident, for they, too, were the subject of Tony's stories about their lives, career, and pride in helping him project his music to the world.
3. A Performance to Be Remembered At the Agua Caliente Resort Casino
With Tie a Yellow Ribbon as his opening song, he immediately had his audience singing with him. Then, not missing a beat, he turned the performance into an event honoring our war heroes. He went through all the wars with the lights up, starting with WW II. Then as he went through the different wars, the standing veterans visually illustrated the many people who have fought for our freedom. He pointed out we have few WWII veterans alive, but we should honor those still alive. Then he asked the lights to be turned off to honor all those who sacrificed their lives for us. I'm pretty sure there was not a dry eye in the house.
While he focused on his songs, the band constantly stretched him with new renditions of other popular groups' music during the 70s. With no intermission, his smile grew as the evening kept the audience singing along with him and tapping their feet.
As we filed out of the auditorium, the conversations around us revealed that we were not the only two that found this to be an extraordinary concert, much of it because of the focus on humanity. Feeling so fortunate, I had the opportunity to go to the show in the first place but had no idea I would be touched on so many levels.
We agreed he had done everything right. Yes, he has had a few years to perfect his craft. Yet, his words of sincerity and belief that people should follow their dreams exuded from every pore in his body. What a gift he gave to us all, and yes reminded us perhaps, we can all be a little kinder to each other.
Kathy Condon is a journalist and travel writer who has been to 29 countries, 16 islands, and 49 states (Alaska is on the list for a future visit). Her goal is to travel and share the stories and attractions she uncovers with her readers. Her articles are published on TravelAwaits, Extended Weekend Getaways, and Wander With Wonder, to name a few.