George Michael postpones tour due to pneumonia

Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:25pm EST
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LONDON (Reuters) - British singer George Michael has been forced to postpone the rest of his European tour due to ongoing treatment for "severe" pneumonia, his spokeswoman said on Friday.

But she denied reports that the former Wham! frontman was suffering from serious heart problems and was "slowly improving" in hospital in Vienna.

"George Michael is ill with pneumonia and any other speculation regarding his illness is unfounded and untrue," she said in a statement.

"He is receiving excellent medical care; he is responding to treatment and slowly improving."

His doctors advised that the chart-topping artist behind such solo hits as "Careless Whisper" and "Faith" should postpone the rest of his Symphonica tour.

He is being treated by Christoph Zielinski and Thomas Staudinger, who said in a joint statement:

"George Michael has severe community acquired pneumonia and is being treated as an inpatient. His condition has stabilized and he is responding to treatment.

"From the current point of view, the time until recovery cannot be estimated, but he will not be able to perform the rest of the tour. Besides medical treatment, complete rest and peace and quiet are mandatory."

All British dates of his Symphonica European tour have been called off, including three this month and 11 in December.

Further announcements will be made once the gigs can be rescheduled, and ticket holders were asked to retain their tickets.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato)