Céline Dion rang in her “Courage” era this week by popping in to a New York drag bar.
The venue, Lips Drag Queen Show Palace Restaurant & Bar, was hosting a Céline-themed karaoke contest on Thursday night. After fans belted out hits like “My Heart Will Go On” and “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now,” Dion herself emerged onstage at midnight.
“This album has been a long process. It has been making me struggle through different emotions,” she told the crowd. “I hope that René will like the album. I hope you like it as well. I put my heart into it.”
She then took the stage for a semi-impromptu performance of her current single, “Flying on My Own.”
Dion, 51, has been enjoying a cultural resurgence as of late. Last year, she launched a gender-neutral clothing line for children. In May, she wowed at the 2019 Met Gala in a dazzling, Ziegfeld Follies-inspired ensemble that was singled out by many fashion publications as one of the evening’s best.
“Courage,” Dion’s 27th studio album, sees her teaming up with the likes of Sia and David Guetta to explore an edgier, more dance-oriented sound.
Critics have been mostly impressed by the album, which hit retailers and streaming platforms Friday.
“There’s plenty here for new and longtime fans to latch onto, the most important takeaway being that after a trying few years, the ever-resilient Queen Céline will be OK,” USA Today critic Patrick Ryan wrote.
Rolling Stone’s Brittany Spanos echoed those sentiments in her review, noting that she considers “‘Courage’ to be Dion’s version of Cher’s ‘Believe’: an album that arrived at exactly the right time, and proved to a new generation that she’s worth revisiting and recognizing as a diva very capable of keeping up with the times.”
Watch video of Céline Dion’s New York appearance below.