Yesterday, Maureen McGovern fans were told to expect a major announcement today, Friday, August 19, at 7:30 p.m. ET. Many hoped it would be info about a long-awaited return to the road.
Sadly, the news is that McGovern has been diagnosed with "posterior cortical atrophy, with symptoms of Alzheimer's and/or dementia."
The diagnosis is one with which she's been dealing for some time, privately. In her video announcement, she talks about battling "hopelessness," and says that while she's still passionate about singing and hopes to draw more attention to music therapy, she can no longer "travel or perform in live concerts."
She jokes of her new inability to drive: "How's that for a kick in the butt?"
McGovern's tone is one of acceptance, though, and she almost sounds like she is consoling her fans, who are sure to be devastated to lose her as a dynamic live performer in her early 70s.
Of course, everyone of a certain age loves the Grammy nominee for her amazing #1 smash "The Morning After" from The Poseidon Adventure (1972). That song — and "We May Never Love Like This Again" from The Towering Inferno (1974) won Oscars for their writers and elevated McGovern's name. She went on to a fabulous career in cabaret and in musical theater.
I personally think her theme song for Angie (1979-1980), a Top 20 hit, is one of her greatest performances.
And I would be remiss if I skipped over her belting of "Respect" in Airplane! (1980).
Here's hoping her journey, as she refers to it, is gentle and gives her time to continue enjoying life and sharing her talents in whatever ways are possible.