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December, 29

Clark celebrates 40 years with Gaga

Clark celebrates 40 years with Gaga

Lady Gaga will headline as the US celebrates 40 years of the Dick Clark New Year's Eve special.

New Year's Rockin' Eve, with Clark and Ryan Seacrest, will pay tribute to the TV institution's own history during a sprawling, nearly six-hour programme on Saturday night.

Gaga will feature in the prime slot in Times Square in the moments before midnight.

Justin Bieber, Pitbull, Florence + The Machine, Gym Class Heroes, Nicki Minaj and Taio Cruz are among the other featured performers from New York and Los Angeles, while Beyonce is scheduled to perform from London.

Producer Larry Klein said booking the show was a challenge because performers are frequently offered some of their most lucrative gigs on New Year's Eve. What Clark has to offer is exposure to a large audience not often seen this side of American Idol.

Klein remembers Jennifer Lopez's exhilaration a few years back after performing in Times Square despite wearing a skimpy outfit and being pelted by freezing rain.

"No matter how much I can try to explain to people what it's like to be in Times Square live, I can't do it justice," he said. "You have to experience it once in your life."

During the first two hours, ABC will show clips of performances from past New Year's Eve specials, which Klein describes as a fascinating trip through hair, clothing and musical styles. Stars of Clark's first Rockin' Eve included Al Green, Helen Reddy and Three Dog Night.

New Year's Eve also marks the annual appearance of Clark, once a ubiquitous presence on television. A stroke makes it difficult for Clark to communicate, but he doesn't want to miss the show, Klein said.

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