Tony Bennett, 95, retires from live shows on doctors’ orders
Some might say that 95 is a decent age to call it a day. But Tony Bennett, who is retiring from live performance after more than eight decades in the business, is only doing so on strict doctors’ orders.
According to the singer’s son and manager, Danny, last week’s sold-out shows alongside Lady Gaga at Radio City Music Hall in New York will be his last. “There won’t be any additional concerts,” Danny Bennett told Variety. “This was a hard decision for us to make, as he is a capable performer. This is however doctors’ orders. His continued health is the most important part of this, and when Tony’s wife, Susan, heard the doctors she said, ‘Absolutely not.’”
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Earlier this year it was revealed that Bennett had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2016; he has continued to perform live in the five years since. The singer was expected to appear at a handful more US dates later this year but these shows have now been cancelled.
“It’s not the singing aspect but rather the traveling,” said Danny Bennett. “He gets tired. We don’t want him to fall on stage, for instance. We’re not worried about him being able to sing. We are worried, from a physical standpoint … about human nature. Tony’s 95.””
This doesn’t mean the end of Bennett’s working life, and there are already releases in the pipeline. An album with Lady Gaga, Love For Sale, is due in October and will comprise of covers of Cole Porter songs. The two won a Grammy for the 2014 collaboration Cheek to Cheek.