Tony Orlando is hanging up the mic. Following a career that has spanned more than six decades, the musician is stepping away from the road, on Monday announcing the Tony Orlando Farwell Tour, which will kick off this month before capping with his final concert on March 22 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.
“I am so honored that my last concert will be at my favorite venue on Earth, Mohegan Sun Arena,” Orlando said in a statement. “My relationship with Tom Cantone, the stage crews, and the staff at Mohegan Sun Arena has been flawless. I also want to thank all my friends within the Mohegan Tribe for making me feel like family and for the opportunity to say goodbye. Thank you for making my dreams come true.”
The Tony Orlando Farewell Tour will begin with a three-night stand at the South Point Casino in Las Vegas on Jan. 19, 20, and 21. Orlando began topping the bill in Las Vegas at the famed Riviera Hotel showroom in 1973, eventually going on to headline the esteemed and historic Las Vegas Hilton. After wrapping up his 51-year career as a Vegas headliner, Orlando will make stops in Niagara Falls, Canada; Des Plaines and St. Charles, Illinois; and Atlantic City, New Jersey. A complete list of dates can be found at tonyorlando.com. His final performance at Mohegan Sun’s 10,000-seat arena will mark his 65th show at the venue.
“We are honored that after such a historic entertainment and humanitarian career, Tony Orlando has chosen Mohegan Sun to host his final live performance,” Tom Cantone, President of Sports & Entertainment for Mohegan, said. “It’s now time for us to give him a standing ovation for entertaining over 100,000 fans at Mohegan Sun over the years, something that only Billy Joel has done, as he will be forever part of Mohegan’s entertainment family.”
Asked why he’s decided to retire from touring, Orlando, 79, told Billboard that traveling is “grueling,” adding, “and then when you add the overhead the cost to travel with eight band members on the road and then you add five and six hours of delays or cancellations at airports. And not many non-stops, and then your connections end up being canceled.” He also cited his age, telling the outlet, “well this is not a smart or good match. So, it’s time.”
As for what’s next? Orlando told Billboard that it’s “time for a new journey.” He said that retiring from the road will allow him to “satisfy my creative juices” by creating new products, including the launch of Tony Orlando Productions and Explosive Film and Entertainment companies. He said he plans “to pay more attention to writing a Broadway show…[and] pitching my ideas for films and writing my next book. And maybe even managing the careers of some new and young talent.”