Illness forced Elton John off the stage on Sunday night (Feb. 16) in Auckland, New Zealand after nearly two hours of performance in spite of his condition.
The pop star (and recent Oscar winner) is in the midst of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour, and though he was diagnosed with walking pneumonia before his stop at Auckland’s Mt. Smart Stadium, he proceeded to move forward with his concert — and even made it through most of it before he lost his voice.
Videos captured by members of the audience show John, clearly heartbroken and frustrated, as he apologizes to the crowd for having to wrap the gig early and makes his way off stage.
“I was determined to give you the best show humanly possible,” he wrote on Twitter following the performance. “I played and sang my heart out, until my voice could sing no more. I’m disappointed, deeply upset and sorry. I gave it all I had.”
John is scheduled to perform at Mt. Smart Stadium through Saturday (Feb. 22) before the Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour moves on to Australia. The North American leg of the international trek kicks off in Indianapolis on March 26.
Read John’s apology in full below.
I played and sang my heart out, until my voice could sing no more. I’m disappointed, deeply upset and sorry.— Elton John (@eltonofficial) February 16, 2020
I gave it all I had.
Thank you so much for your extraordinary support and all the love you showed me during tonight’s performance.— Elton John (@eltonofficial) February 16, 2020
I am eternally grateful.
Love, Elton xx
📷: Ben Gibson