Illusionist and magician Criss Angel has cancelled several shows of his highly successful Vegas program Criss Angel BeLIEve to be with his young son who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia earlier this week. According to Yahoo, this is the first time Angel has missed an appearance in more than 3000 shows of BeLIEve which Criss has been performing at the Luxor Hotel and Casino since 2008.
According to a Las Vegas Sun article from 2013, Angel’s show stopped production briefly while Criss underwent rotator cuff repair and rehabilitation for three months in January of that year but Angel took great pride in the fact that he powered through other illnesses and injuries to give Criss Angel fans the experience they had hoped for.
“I’ve performed through a deviated septum, a hernia, illness, and I’ve not missed one show…I’ve done more than 2,100 shows. I am saying this because it’s been a lot of work, which is great, because the harder the work, the greater the reward,” Angel had stated. But as Criss would find out, winning at parenthood sometimes trumps an intense desire for career success and this week, Angel made the tough decision to focus on being a father rather than a performer.
Though Angel’s social media posts had been vague, stating that he would be handling a “family emergency,” hotel staff stated that Criss held a news conference last night informing fans that his stage would go dark at least until November 1 as Angel left to visit his nearly two-year-old son Johnny. Angel posted a photo of himself and Johnny to his official Twitter account earlier in the day.
— Criss Angel (@CrissAngel) October 23, 2015
According to the Las Vegas Sun, there had been a longstanding rumor that Criss Angel had secretly married an unnamed mother more than a year ago and that the 47-year-old Angel and his wife had a son together. The couple split up over the summer and Angel’s wife returned to Australia with Johnny in tow. Criss’ announcement that he would be going to Australia to be by Johnny’s side was reportedly Angel’s first public acknowledgement of the relationship.
Ironically, in 2010, Criss Angel was given the Make-a-Wish Foundation award for being the most supportive celebrity through his philanthropic charity the BELIEVE Foundation. The BELIEVE Charitable Foundation was created in honor of Criss’ father who passed away in 1998 and is meant to help children who are suffering from debilitating or life-limiting illnesses as well as their families. Now Criss finds himself in the shoes of those he has striven so hard to support.
Criss Angel, whose real name is Christopher Nicholas Sarantakos, started out as a street performer sometimes performing more than 60 times a day in New York’s Times Square. After support from horror director Clive Barker, and appearances in small movies and a handful of television specials, Angel’s career was catapulted to the top of the magician food chain by the A & E original series Criss Angel Mindfreak in which Criss was the creator, director, and executor producer. Criss Angel Mindfreak ran from 2005-2010.
While Angel has kept steadily busy with his television and stage shows, Criss had announced a new endeavor as the creator, director, and executive producer just this past summer in which he would be bringing the talents of fellow illusionist Landon Swank, magician Krystyn Lambert, escape artist Spencer Horsman, and a variety of other performers on a global tour entitled The Supernaturalists.
Though reviews of Angel’s The Supernaturalists had been fairly positive, as previously reported by the Inquisitr, the show made headlines last month when one of the stars, Spencer Horsman, nearly drowned in front of a thousand spectators performing the “water torture cell’ escape trick. It is unknown if Criss’ son’s health crisis will affect upcoming appearances of The Supernaturalists as well.
Criss Angel BeLIEve is expected to resume November 4.
[Criss Angel cover image provided courtesy of Bryan Steffy/Getty Images.]