Elvis Costello forced to cancel UK tour following cancer surgery, promises new album in October

Elvis Costello, the 63-year-old pioneer of British punk, has canceled the remaining dates on his European tour after being advised to rest following surgery


                            Elvis Costello forced to cancel UK tour following cancer surgery, promises new album in October

Elvis Costello has canceled the remaining dates on his European tour after being advised to rest following surgery for a “small but very aggressive cancerous malignancy”. The 63-year-old London musician had already scrapped two UK gigs last month (Southend and Plymouth) after undergoing surgery for cancer in May, with his doctor recommending that he take a break from touring in order to rest. 

Costello revealed in a statement, which you can read in full below, that he had undergone a single operation and that initially, following the procedure, he was “elated and relieved that our European summer tour could go ahead” but things didn't remain to be so. Find the affected dates below. Ticket holders are being advised to go to their point of purchase for refunds. 

July 6 – Manchester, Castlefield Bowl
July 8 – Pula Arena, Pula, Croatia
July 9 – Kasematten – Schlossberguhne, Graz, Austria
July 11 – Konzerthaus, Vienna, Austria
July 14 – Tysnesfest Gjesrstad Arena, Tysnes, Norway
July 16 – Dalhalla, Rattvik, Sweden



Costello, one of the pioneers of the British punk and new wave movement that emerged in the mid-to-late 1970s, currently plays with The Imposters and revealed some good news to make up for the disappointment. A new album will be dropping later this year, hopefully around October. “To leave you with some more optimistic news, The Imposters and I – together with several of our other friends – have made a magnificent new record of which we are truly proud. It will be issued in October, I believe," Costello said in the statement.

Read the full statement below: “Six weeks ago my specialist called me and said, “You should start playing the Lotto”. He had rarely, if ever, seen such a small but very aggressive cancerous malignancy that could be defeated by a single surgery. I was elated and relieved that our European summer tour could go ahead.

Post-surgical guidelines for such surgery, recommend three weeks to four weeks recovery depending on whether you are returning to a desk job or an occupation that involves physical work or travel.

It was impossible to judge how this advisory would line up with the demands on a traveling musician, playing 90-minute to 2-hour plus performances on a nightly basis but by the time we reached the Edinburgh Playhouse, I was almost fooled into thinking that normal service had been resumed.

I have to thank our friends attending last night’s show in Amsterdam and those in Antwerp, Glynde and at Newcastle City Hall for bearing me up. The spirit has been more than willing but I have to now accept that it is going to take longer than I would have wished for me to recover my full strength. Therefore, I must reluctantly cancel all the remaining engagements of this tour.

My apologies go to our ticket holders in Manchester, Pula, Graz, Vienna, Tysnes and Rattvik but I would rather disappoint our friends there by not appearing than in pressing on with a show that is compromised and eventually puts my health at risk.

Elvis Costello had already canceled two UK dates after undergoing cancer surgery earlier this May (Photo Credit: Cindy Ord/Getty)
Elvis Costello had already canceled two UK dates after undergoing cancer surgery earlier this May (Photo Credit: Cindy Ord/Getty)

"My deep thanks go to Pete Thomas, Steve Nieve and Davey Faragher of The Imposters for all their deep friendship, love and support during this upsetting time. Thanks also to Kitten Kuroi and Briana Lee whose beautiful voices have spurred me on to do the singing that I’ve managed, whatever the cost. It goes without saying that there are many others who have worked to get us to the stage and from town to town to whom I am also deeply grateful.

"To leave you with some more optimistic news, The Imposters and I – together with several of our other friends – have made a magnificent new record of which we are truly proud. It will be issued in October, I believe. We will return at the soonest opportunity to play that music and your favourite songs that still make sense to us all.

Take very good care of your loved ones but Gentleman, do talk to you friends – you’ll find you are not alone – seek your doctor’s advice if you are in doubt or when it is timely and act as swiftly as you may in these matters. It may save your life. Believe me, it is better than playing roulette.”

Yours through music. Elvis Costello”