All the Pretty Voices
Véronic DiCaire's Voices makes for rewarding entertainment
Step aside, Rich Little. There’s a new impressionist ready to sing her way into your heart. Véronic DiCaire can belt out the songs from every diva (go ahead, name one, she can do it) stretching back to Billie Holiday and forward to Lady Gaga. The Montreal native has a wheelhouse of at least 50 voices, and another 35 of French-Canadian singers that you will never hear, in Véronic: Voices at the Jubilee Theatre inside Bally’s Las Vegas.
Take a tour around the globe while DiCaire covers Beyoncé, Adele, Taylor Swift, Christina Aguilera and even her mentor, Celine Dion, who co-produces the show. DiCaire met the songstress during Dion’s 2008 Taking Chances tour, where she opened the show for the singer. At the time, DiCaire just did her interpretations of singers for fun, with only four in her repertoire. She quickly added a dozen more for her 20-minute set in front of more than 20,000 people. Dion decided to take a chance of her own and open Véronic: Voices last year.
“Almost all of my idols have performed here—Cher, Bette Midler and, of course, Celine Dion,” DiCaire says, reminding the audience that this is the first time the French-Canadian has performed a show in English. Then it’s a trip through the ’80s with stars such as Cyndi Lauper, Gloria Estefan, Annie Lennox, Debbie Harry, Janet Jackson and Pat Benatar. Listen carefully; each song has a lead-in from a dominant guy band of the era, segueing into her renditions of the female stars. A troupe of six women, all brunettes, dances alongside DiCaire, who has added some moves of her own to the show since it first opened.
When she performs a Shakira song, DiCaire says she thinks of Kermit the Frog on a vacation in Spain with just a touch of Miss Piggy to get the voice just right. For Amy Winehouse, she imagines that she hasn’t slept in three days while balancing a black poodle on her head. “If you can yawn, you can do Anita Baker,” she says.
DiCaire shows off the range of her voice with some of the toughest notes to hit. She nails that super high note in Mariah Carey’s “Emotions.” She perfectly hits those high vibrato swells of Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You.”
Even the younger crowds can get into the show. She brings the likes of Pink, Katy Perry and Madonna into the mix before sitting down at the piano to play along with Annie Lennox’s “Why” and Norah Jones’ “Don’t Know Why.” She shows depth and range with Karen Carpenter’s alto voice in “Close to You” and Alicia Keys’ “Empire State of Mind.” And DiCaire slips from one interpretation to the next with ease. Country music takes a turn with the likes of Dolly Parton (and her laugh), Reba McEntire, Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood and Shania Twain.
DiCaire saves her best until last when she takes on the most difficult and dynamic of performers of the singing world—Cher, Liza Minnelli, Aretha Franklin and Barbra Streisand—practically turning one off and the next on.
DiCaire is one of the most likable performers in a town where there are so many tribute shows and impressionists. Her sheer volume of singing styles and talent dwarfs the competition with a skill that needs to be seen and heard. She’s charming and humble yet still packs the punch of a diva in her own right.
Bally’s, 9:30 p.m. Thurs., 7 p.m. Fri.-Sat., $30-$135 plus tax and fee. 702.777.7776