Celine Dion made a surprise appearance at the Grammy awards amid her battle with rare neurological condition Stiff Person Syndrome.
The 55-year-old singer earned a standing ovation as she walked on stage to present the album of the year award.
“Thank you all… When I say that I’m happy to be here, I really mean it from my heart,” Dion said.
She presented the prize to Taylor Swift for her album Midnights.
The My Heart Will Go On Singer was accompanied onstage by her son to present the night’s biggest prize of the year, 27 years after Diana Ross and Stinger presented the prize to her, she said.
“Those who have been blessed enough to be here at the Grammy awards must never take it for granted, the tremendous love and joy that music brings to our lives and to people all around the world,” she said.
Swift was among those upstanding for Dion when she walked on stage and singing to Dion’s hit The Power of Love.
Although she later drew criticism from some online for appearing only briefly to acknowledge Dion as she was handing her her trophy, instead speaking excitedly with her collaborators on stage.
Swift and Dion later took pictures together.
Dion previously spoke about muscle spasms causing her difficulties when she walks and not allowing her to use her vocal cords to sing in her normal way when she revealed her diagnosis in December 2022. She later cancelled her Courage world tour.
The main symptoms of SPS are muscle stiffening and spasming, which can be triggered by environmental stimuli like loud noises and can calm down when the stimulus is gone.
Currently there is no cure for SPS, but the disease can be treated by methods including the use of muscle sedatives and relaxants.
The star is rarely seen in public since her diagnosis. In November, she made her first appearance in three years, reportedly singing a few notes at a hockey game in Las Vegas.
Last month it was revealed a documentary will be released following the singer as she lives with her illness on Amazon Prime Video.
The Because You Loved Me star said in a press statement: “This last couple of years has been such a challenge for me, the journey from discovering my condition to learning how to live with and manage it, but not to let it define me.
“As the road to resuming my performing career continues, I have realized how much I have missed it, of being able to see my fans.
“During this absence, I decided I wanted to document this part of my life, to try to raise awareness of this little-known condition, to help others who share this diagnosis.”
The vocal powerhouse has sold more than 250 million albums during her 40-year career and has won five Grammy awards.
First appeared on www.bbc.com