Céline Dion reveals she has incurable neurological disease: ‘The spasms affect every aspect of my daily life’

The Canadian singer has been diagnosed with stiff person syndrome, which has forced her to cancel her 2023 European tour

Celine Dion attending Paris Haute Couture week in July 2019.
Celine Dion attending Paris Haute Couture week in July 2019.Edward Berthelot (GC Images)

Canadian singer Céline Dion announced on Thursday that she has an incurable neurological disease, which has forced her to cancel her 2023 European tour. In a video posted on Instagram, the performer said that she suffers from stiff person syndrome (SPS), a disorder that affects the central nervous system and causes muscle spasms. SPS is extremely rare, affecting one in a million people.

“The spasms affect every aspect of my daily life, sometimes causing difficulties when I walk and not allowing me to use my vocal cords to sing the way I’m used to,” she said tearfully in the video to her 5.2 million followers. “I have a great team of doctors working alongside me to help me get better and my precious children who are supporting me and giving me hope.”

“All I know is singing. It’s what I’ve done all my life, and it’s what I love to do the most,” she added.

Since 2019, Dion has not been on stage. The singer suspended her tour Courage Tour in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and last January, she suspended part of the tour that was scheduled for this year. Due to her health condition, Dion has postponed the concert dates until 2024. In an official statement, the Nyon Paleo Festival in Switzerland confirmed that Dion will not be performing next year as planned. The organization wished the singer a speedy recovery and offered to refund tickets for the event.

In the video, Dion thanked her fans for their support and said that she was optimistic about her recovery. “I have hope that I’m on the road to recovery. This is my focus, and I’m doing everything that I can to recuperate,” she said. “I miss you so much. I miss seeing all of you, being on the stage, performing for you. I always give 100 percent when I do my shows, but my condition is not allowing me to give you that right now,” she added.

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