Celine Dion has canceled her Courage world tour as she continues to struggle with a neurological condition.
The singer, 55, had previously postponed her scheduled shows after publicly sharing in December that she had been diagnosed with the condition known as Stiff Person Syndrome.
Celine took to Instagram on Friday to announce that it was with “huge disappointment” that she was unable to perform on her world tour, adding that she is “working really hard to rebuild her strength.”
She posted an image of her canceled tour dates saying, “It is with immense disappointment that we have to announce the cancellation of the Courage World Tour today.
“Sorry to disappoint you all again. I’m working very hard to rebuild my strength, but touring can be very difficult, even when you’re at 100%.
It’s Out: Celine Dion has canceled her world tour as she continues to battle a neurological condition known as Stiff Person Syndrome
Sad news: The singer announced the cancellation of the tour with “massive disappointment” but added that she is “working very hard to rebuild her strength”
“It’s not fair to you to keep postponing the shows, and even though my heart is breaking, it’s best we cancel everything now until I’m really ready to get back on stage.
“I want you all to know I’m not giving up…and I can’t wait to see you again!”
Celine also shared an image of the full list of canceled tour dates, including shows in France, Belgium, Denmark, Poland and the UK, and a statement announcing the news.
The statement added: “We are hopeful that Celine will one day be able to come to all these cities in Europe to perform for her amazing fans, but that time is just not now.”
After Celine posted the sad news, she was inundated with messages of support from her fans, urging her to take all the time she needed for the sake of her health.
One wrote: ‘We love you Celine, take care of yourself, your health is the most important and precious thing. We pray for your healing.’
Another said, ‘We miss you! We remain confident in your recovery,” while a third posted, “We just need you to take care of yourself. Your health is all that matters.’
One of them added: ‘You have never let us down. You had worked for so many years to bring us great moments and beautiful songs! It’s only a matter of time to see you back on stage, and we’re waiting for you with all the patience you need to get better…praying for your recovery!’
Sweet: After Celine posted the sad news, she was inundated with messages of support from her fans, urging her to take all the time she needed for her health
Hard times: In December, the Because You Loved Me singer revealed that she had been diagnosed with the rare neurological condition, stiff person syndrome
In December, the Because You Loved Me singer revealed she had been diagnosed with a rare neurological condition called stiff person syndrome.
The condition, which affects one in a million people and causes her muscles to tense uncontrollably, eventually leaves patients like “human statues” as the body gradually locks into rigid positions, rendering patients unable to walk or speak.
While there is no cure for SPS, there are treatments that slow its progression, and Celine revealed she does everything she can to minimize symptoms.
The Power of Love singer addressed her fans in a tearful Instagram post on Dec. 8, adding that it forced her to postpone her European tour.
“Hello everyone, I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to get back to you. I miss you all so much and can’t wait to get on stage to talk to you in person,” she wrote.
“As you know, I’ve always been an open book and wasn’t ready to say anything, but now I’m ready.
“I have been battling health issues for a long time and it has been very difficult for me to face my challenges and talk about all that I have been through.
“Recently I was diagnosed with a very rare neurological condition, stiff person syndrome, which affects one in a million people.
“While we’re still learning about this rare condition, we now know it’s the cause of all the spasms I’ve had.”
Describing the impact the condition has had on her, Celine continues: ‘Unfortunately, these spasms affect every aspect of my daily life, sometimes causing difficulty in walking and preventing me from using my vocal cords to sing as I am used to. .
“It pains me to tell you today that this means I won’t be ready to resume my tour in Europe in February.
“I have a great team of doctors who work alongside me to help me get better and my precious children who support and help me.
“I work hard every day with my sports medicine therapist to rebuild my strength and my performance, but I have to admit it has been a struggle.
‘All I know is singing, that’s what I’ve been doing all my life and what I love to do the most.
‘I miss you very much. I miss seeing you all perform on stage for you.
“I always give 100 percent when I do my show, but my condition allows me to give you that now.
“For me to reach out to you again, I have no choice but to focus on my health right now, and I have hope that I am on the road to recovery.
“This is my focus and I am doing everything I can to recover.
“I want to thank you so much for your wishes and love and support on my social media. This means a lot to me.
‘Take care of yourself. Best wishes. I love you so much and I really hope I can see you again soon.”
The mother-of-three first hinted at her health issues in January 2022 when she canceled the North American dates of her Courage world tour.
The announcement came three months after she had to cancel the start of her comeback residency in Las Vegas due to the same health issue.
Celine has become known as ‘Queen Of Las Vegas’ due to her hugely successful residencies there.
Moving out: The mother of three first hinted at her health issues in January 2022 when she canceled the North American dates of her Courage world tour
After retiring from her famed residence at Caesars Palace in 2019, she was lured back to Sin City to perform at the new Resorts World on the Strip.
A statement on her website said Celine “has recently been treated for severe and persistent muscle spasms that prevent her from performing, and her recovery is taking longer than she hoped.
“Her medical team continues to evaluate and treat the condition.”
Celine added: ‘I was really hoping I would be out of it by now, but I think I just need to be more patient and follow the regimen my doctors prescribe.
“There is a lot of organization and preparation that goes into our shows, so we have to make decisions today that will affect plans two months from now. I will be so happy to be back to full health, and that we are all getting through this pandemic, and I can’t wait to get back on stage.”
“Meanwhile, I am very moved by all the words of encouragement that everyone sends to me on social media. I feel your love and support and that means everything to me.”
The incurable condition that turns patients into ‘human statues’: what is stiff person syndrome?
Stiff person syndrome is an extremely rare condition in which the muscles in the trunk and limbs alternate between cramping and stiffness.
Estimates suggest it only affects about one or two in a million people — and 330 people in the US are diagnosed each year. About twice as many women as men are affected.
The progressive disease causes patients’ stiffness to increase over time and may require them to use a wheelchair.
There are usually three types of the syndrome:
- Classic person syndrome: For stiffness and spasms around the back and abdomen, and occasionally thighs and neck. It can cause curvature of the back over time.
- Stiff limb syndrome: Spasms mainly affect the legs and feet, occasionally causing them to get stuck. Hands can also be affected.
- Shockingly Stiff Person Syndrome: The rarest, most aggressive form, which includes symptoms from both others and also affects the head and eyes.
Experts aren’t exactly sure what’s behind the disease, but they think it may be caused by an autoimmune reaction, when the body attacks its own nerve cells that control muscle movement.
About 40 percent of patients also have type 1 diabetes, another autoimmune disease. Type 1 diabetes is particularly associated with the classic person syndrome.
It’s also more common in people with breast, lung, kidney, thyroid, or colon cancer, as well as lymphomas, but researchers don’t yet know why.
In stiff person syndrome, the immune system attacks a protein that helps make gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), which regulates motor neurons — the nerves that control movement.
Low levels of GABA cause the neurons to fire continuously when they are not supposed to, resulting in spasms and stiffness.
What are the symptoms?
The main symptoms caused by stiff person syndrome are spasms and stiffness of the trunk and extremities.
Spasms can be triggered by loud noises, with the condition also causing increased sensitivity to sound.
Touch and emotional distress may also be felt more intensely as a result of the condition.
The spasms can be so severe that people fall or lead to difficulty walking and other disabilities.
Stress and anxiety are also usually higher in people with the condition, mainly because of the unpredictability of spasms.
The lack of GABA – which regulates anxiety – in their system also affects mental health.