Christina Aguilera launched her new Las Vegas residency, The XPerience, on Friday night, performing to a packed house at Planet Hollywood’s Zappos Theater.
As People reports, the show included lasers, smoke machines and multiple costume changes along with performances of some of her biggest hits, with tracks such as “Beautiful,” “Fighter” and “Ain’t No Other Man” part of the set list.
For Saturday’s show, Aguilera also dusted off some of her lesser-known material, including the track “Reflection” from the soundtrack to Disney’s “Mulan”, along with a cover of Whitney Houston’s “I Love the Lord”, explaining why that particular song has such special meaning to her.
“I had to audition for the ‘Mulan’ soundtrack and also my record deal in the same week,” Aguilera, 38, told the audience. “I was super intimated, shaking like a leaf… and he says to me, ‘So sing for me.’ It was a sink or swim moment. He was like, ‘I want to prove you can sing for real.’”
Explaining that she was “super super inspired” by Houston and her film “The Preacher’s Wife”, she added: “I’ve never sung them in a concert before,” she said. “It was a sink or swim moment. I swam.”
She also had a little news to share. During her performance of “Desnudate”, she hinted about the release of an upcoming Latin-themed album. “Let’s not forget: the Latin album is coming!” she told the crowd.
According to People, Aguilera closed the show on a high note. “If I leave you with anything tonight please, let there be love,” she said, before ending her show with “Let There Be Love”.
The singer had a special celebrity guest in the audience for opening night: Demi Lovato, who described The Xperience as “a PERFECT, perfect show.”
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The fucking queen herself. A PERFECT, perfect show.. couldn’t believe it was opening night because it was so smooth, flawless and sounded incredible. I was entertained the entire time and was so bummed when it was over until I was reunited with this beauty. I’m so so happy I got to hug you @xtina, haven’t seen you in concert since I was 14 and I can’t believe how much life has changed since then. Honored to call you a friend 💗 keep it up queen. Oh and EVERYONE should go see #TheXperience at @phvegas!!!
“The Xperience is going to be my most ambitious show yet,” Aguilera said when she first announced her residency. “Getting to perform in this adult playground we call Las Vegas is inspiring me to bring forth all of my talents in a mind-blowing theatrical experience — song, dance, visuals and uninterrupted high energy. For years I have been collecting ideas and concepts that have yet to be implemented on my stages, and Las Vegas is the perfect opportunity for me to collectively showcase my artistry. I cannot wait to bring you into The Xperience.”
Aguilera’s The Xperience will continue through June 16 before returning with the final four shows in September.