Chris Rea Cancels UK Shows After Stage Collapse

Chris Rea collapsed on stage during his concert at the New Theatre in Oxford, England, Dec. 9, and his last two remaining UK shows were subsequently called off. 

Frank Hoensch / Redferns

British singer Chris Rea performs at the Tempodrom in Berlin Oct. 30.

The Oxford gig had marked Rea’s third-to-last show on his Road Songs for Lovers UK and European tour, which launched Oct. 7 at the Carré in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The tour continued on mainland Europe throughout October and November, before coming to the UK on Nov. 21, playing at the Sage Theatre in Gateshead.

After visiting Ireland and Northern Ireland Dec. 6-7, Rea returned to England for a Dec. 9 gig at Oxford’s New Theatre, where he reportedly collapsed around 45 minutes into his set.

The curtains were drawn and the show was canceled. A spokesperson for South Central Ambulance said medics received the call at 9:30 p.m. Rea was taken to hospital, where his condition was declared “stable.”

The next day, Rea’s team released a statement announcing the cancellation of the Dec. 10 concert at the Brighton Center, adding: “Thank you to everyone sending Chris their best wishes and to all the fans who came to see him last night.”

Today, a Live Nation statement announced the cancellation of the last date of the Road Songs for Lovers tour in Bournemouth: “Unfortunately, Chris is unable to perform at The Bournemouth International Centre (BIC) on Tuesday Dec. 12 due to illness. All ticket holders should obtain refunds at point of purchase.”

Chris Rea was diagnosed with cancer in 2001, and suffered from a stroke in 2016.