Lionel Richie says hello to Vegas

Lionel Richie performing at Britain's Glastonbury Festival in June 2015.
Lionel Richie performing at Britain's Glastonbury Festival in June 2015.REUTERS

NEW YORK (AFP) - Pop legend Lionel Richie announced on Wednesday he would start a residency in Las Vegas, pledging to put on an elaborate show.

The 66-year-old singer of 1980s smash hits such as Hello, All Night Long and Stuck On You will open on April 27, with 20 dates initially scheduled.

Richie said that the residency at the Planet Hollywood casino would allow a more ambitious stage design than during his concert tours.

"Every imaginable thing you want to do for a show you can now do because there's nothing you have to move around," he said on NBC television's Today show.

Richie, a former singer in Motown legends the Commodores, has sold more than 100 million albums.

The Alabama-born singer has enjoyed much of his success internationally, with a particularly strong following in the Arab world.

Residency shows in Las Vegas, a city that thrives on its casinos and other entertainment, have become increasingly commonplace for artists who are mature in their careers.

Britney Spears started a residency in late 2013 to revive her fortunes after growing attention to her personal travails.

She recently agreed to extend the gala show, also at Planet Hollywood, through late 2017.

Celine Dion, a regular at Caesars Palace, launched a new show last month and Jennifer Lopez is opening her Vegas extravaganza early next year.