Celebrity

Celine Dion Shares Rare Health Update

"One of the hardest experiences of my life..."
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Almost two years after publicly revealing her Stiff Persons Syndrome diagnosis, Celine Dion has spoken candidly about her recent health journey in her first sit-down interview since December 2022.

Ahead of the release of her documentary, I Am: Celine Dion, the 56-year-old offered a rare insight into her experience with the neurological disorder, revealing to NBC’s TODAY, “I had broken ribs at one point because sometimes, when [the muscle spams are] very severe.”

Celine also shared insight into how Stiff Persons Syndrome impacts her ability to perform, sharing that when she has tried to sing, “It’s like somebody is strangling you like someone is pushing on your larynx.”

“It’s cramping, but it’s like in a position of, like, you can’t unlock them,”

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“It’s morally hard to live from day to day.” (Credit: Getty)

Reflecting on her initial diagnosis, Celine revealed to the BBC that despite experiencing symptoms, her struggle with Stiff Persons Syndrome went undiagnosed for many years.

“It was just starting to feel a little strange, like a little spasm. My voice was struggling. I was starting to push a bit,” she shared, adding that she had begun to lower the key of her setlist for her live performances to prevent the strain on her voice.

Speaking in her first Australian interview since her diagnosis, Celine also revealed that her friendship with Australian music legend John Farnham has inspired her to continue her journey to return to the stage.

“It’s kind of prophetic that I sang with him The Voice when I lost my voice not too long ago. This is something that I will work on.”

“When he sang [Help! by The Beatles] live, I listened to him a lot, and I want to sing that song… He’s one of my favourite singers of all time, and I will never forget the gift that he gave me. I tell you that when I’m back on stage and I sing Help!, it will be for John.”

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The 56-year-old had previously scheduled a 2024 world tour. (Credit: Getty)

Just over a year after going public with her Stiff Persons Syndrome diagnosis, Celine Dion has shared a rare health update. 

Celine’s first in-person interview comes just over two months after the Canadian songstress provided a rare health update to Vogue France, sharing that while she generally is in high spirits, she’s taking the journey “one day at a time.”

“I haven’t beat the disease, as it’s still within me and always will be. I hope that we’ll find a miracle, a way to cure it with scientific research, but for now, I have to learn to live with it.”

Speaking further on her goal of returning to the stage, Celine revealed that she has undergone physical and vocal therapy five days a week to help her regain her strength. 

“The way I see it, I have two choices. Either I train like an athlete and work super hard, or I switch off and it’s over, I stay at home, listen to my songs, stand in front of my mirror and sing to myself.”

“I’ve chosen to work with all my body and soul, from head to toe, with a medical team. I want to be the best I can be,” she continued, adding that her goal is to see the Eiffel Tower again in person. 

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“I’m not giving up.” (Credit: Getty)

Since postponing her previous world tour, fans have continued to hold out hope for Celine’s return to the stage, however, the singer shared that she can’t yet envision a set timeline for her next performance. 

“For four years, I’ve been saying to myself that I’m not going back [on stage], that I’m ready, that I’m not ready. As things stand, I can’t stand here and say to you, ‘Yes, in four months.’ I don’t know. My body will tell me.”

“It’s morally hard to live from day to day… I’m working very hard and tomorrow will be even harder… but there’s one thing that will never stop and that’s the will. It’s the passion. It’s the dream. It’s the determination.”

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