Karel Gott announces new concert

The Czech singer is returning to bigger stages after his illness

Czech music icon Karel Gott is set to return to the stage on May 31 at Divadlo Hybernia with a concert called Karel Gott still aLIVE, which will feature duets with invited guests. Future dates will be announced over Gott's Facebook page. The 77-year-old Plzeň native has only made a few appearances since being diagnosed with lymphoma in October 2015. He successfully underwent treatment and announced he had beaten the disease in March 2016.

Gott said at the time of his recovery that he would not return to the stage until he was fully ready, as he did not want to put on bad shows where people considered him a “poor thing” and applauded out of sympathy.

He now feels that time has come. “After an involuntary pause caused by my health problems, I feel like I'm experiencing some kind of a restart, and I'm returning to the stage for my fans. I just wanted my return to be gradual and I just did not want to burn at the starting line, so after a long singing tour and countless big concerts in sports halls, I returned after 55 years to the small stage at the Malostranská beseda. I await Divadlo Hybernia in May, and who knows where I will be next year. I'm still aLIVE, though old, it appears I still live,” Gott said in a statement.

He gave a concert at the rather small Malostranská beseda in October 2016, his only full concert since his illness. Gott has not appeared there since the start of his career in the early 1960s. He has also recently made some brief surprise appearances and recorded a handful of new songs.

The moderator of the May 31 concert will be Libor Bouček, and backing music will be by Jiří Dvořák's Boom!Band. Guests include Eva Pilarová, Ilona Csáková, Dasha, Vojtěch Dík and Petr Kolář.

Gott has won the Czech Nightingale Awards (Český slavík) 41 times. He first won the award in 1963. He began his career in 1960 and achieved fame not only in then-Czechoslovakia but also Germany and Russia. He has sold an estimated 50 million to 100 million records in his career. Gott also achieved some fame in the United States, spending six months in 1967 performing at the New Frontier Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The next year, Gott represented Austria in the Eurovision Song Contest with the song “Tausend Fenster,” but did not win.

Gott had a farewell tour in 1990, but its success convinced him to keep on performing. In the 1990s he also increasingly became interested in painting. In May 2014 he published an autobiography.

For more information visit www.facebook.com/gottkarel

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