Celine Dion celebrates 40 years at the top despite mystery health struggle

·4-min read

Watch: Celine Dion delays Las Vegas concerts due to medical issue

Whatever your feelings about Titanic mega-hit My Heart Will Go On, it can't be denied that its singer, Celine Dion, has had a stellar career, topping charts globally with hit after octave-wrangling hit.

Now, her team have celebrated the French-Canadian star's journey on Instagram, sharing that it's 40 years since her very first studio album, La Voix du Bon Dieu.

At just 13, Dion hit the charts, and recorded a Christmas album shortly afterwards. Since, her songs have been amongst the best-selling of all time, with hits including New Day, Think Twice and Because You Loved Me.

But while she has plenty to celebrate, the singer's plans for her latest Vegas residency have hit the buffers, as Dion has been struck by health problems. 

Singer Celine Dion arrives to attend the Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2019/20 collection show by designer Alexandre Vauthier in Paris, France, July 2, 2019. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
Celine Dion is celebrating 40 years at the top, but now, her health is under scrutiny. (REUTERS/Regis Duvignau)

A statement from her management team explained that the singer has been suffering from "severe and insistent muscle spasms which are preventing her from performing," and hasn't been able to rehearse for the multi-million dollar shows that were planned. 

Dion, who now lives in Nevada, is a regular in Vegas, and is often credited with beginning the lucrative trend for stars' residencies at resorts such as Caesar's Palace and the MGM Grand. A-listers including Elton John and Rod Stewart have also boosted their careers with similar appearances. 

Read more: Why Céline Dion says the movie "Up" saved her life

But now, the plans for Dion's celebratory series of shows are on hold, as her illness has stopped her performing. Fans have expressed concern on social media, with many begging for more clarity.

This week, Dion's sister, Claudette, said, "what's happening to her is sad. But it's not serious, otherwise she would have told me. Celine always confides in me and asks for advice when something is wrong. I know she's in good spirits."

Dion with René Angélil in 2007. (PA Images)
Dion with husband René Angélil in 2007. (PA Images)

Celine herself also posted an update on her forthcoming 'Courage' world tour, which was also postponed till March 2022. 

She wrote, "I ’m heartbroken by this. My team and I have been working on our new show for the past eight months, and to not be able to open this November saddens me beyond words.

"Now, I have to focus on getting better… I want to get through this as soon as I can. - Celine xx…" 

The world famous singer is a widow and mother of three. One of 14 children, she had a poverty-stricken childhood, during which she was badly bullied, but realised early on that her voice could be a way out. 

Intitially releasing albums in French, she came to prominence when she won the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest, representing Switzerland. 

From 1990, she began to release English-language albums, such as Falling into You and Let's Talk About Love, which had over 30 million sales each. Overall, she has sold over 200 million records globally, and won five Grammys. 

She is also lauded for her fashion sense, regularly appearing in high fashion magazines showcasing her avant-garde and dramatic style sense. 

Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala - Met Gala - Camp: Notes on Fashion- Arrivals - New York City, U.S. – May 6, 2019 - Celine Dion. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Dion at the Met Gala in 2019, showcasing her unique sense of style. (REUTERS/Andrew Kelly)

But her personal life has been less joyful. She married her manager, the much older René Angélil, whom she'd known since childhood, in 1994.

Two decades of happy marriage later, in 2014 she was forced to postpone a Caesar's Palace residency and cancel a huge tour of Asia, due to his cancer diagnosis. 

Though he initially went into remission, in 2016, both he and her brother Daniel died from cancer.

In an emotional tribute, Celine told the crowd at her first Las Vegas show after Angélil's death,"he's always been on stage with me, and nothing will ever change that." 

The couple had three sons together vis IVF: Rene-Charles and twins Nelson and Eddy.

Read more: Celine Dion, 51, makes the pavements of New York her own personal catwalk

Now, as her own worrying health issues come under scrutiny, fans are wishing her well.

"Take care of YOU," one fan wrote on Instagram. "We love you," while another wrote, "all that matters is, you get better."

Another added, "get better first, then worry about us!"

As Celine herself once said of her childhood, "We were given love and affection and support. What else did we need?"

Watch: Celine Dion's sister speaks out about performer's health issues

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