British magician Paul Daniels has been diagnosed with an incurable brain tumor, according to reports. No further information has been shared, along with a time frame or treatment options he may go through. His publicist says the family asks for privacy at this time.
Daniels has been part of British entertainment since the 1960s, when he performed his magic skills in Newquay during the summer season. He had practiced during his period of National Service after learning about it from the age of 11, and decided to pursue a career in entertainment full time. He managed to make it to TV the next year, debuting on Opportunity Knocks, the talent show at the time. By 1979, he was a regular on U.K. TV, with his own show The Paul Daniels Magic Show. It ran until it was cancelled in 1994.
We are very sorry to read of Paul Daniels’ diagnosis. We are sending our love to him and his family. https://t.co/cedbLxegC7
— Macmillan Cancer (@macmillancancer) February 20, 2016
However, he remained on TV. As well as magic, he presented quiz shows and TV programs for the BBC. It was due to the BBC that he met his second—and current—wife Debbie McGee. She was his on-stage assistant. According to the BBC, McGee was not looking forward to working with a magician at first, but then she saw the charisma that Daniels shared on the stage.
Daniels’ publicist confirmed his diagnosis of a brain tumor on Saturday, according to The Irish Times. He confirmed that there would be no further comment at this time. His manager did, however, confirm that all his upcoming performances were cancelled. Previous performances had already been cancelled, and they will not be rescheduled.
Such sad news about Paul Daniels who is a lovely and talented man. my thoughts are with you Debbie.
— Tony Blackburn (@tonyblackburn) February 20, 2016
The announcement comes just weeks after the loss of other British entertainers, actors and musicians. In January, David Bowie and Alan Rickman lost their battles to cancer, and Terry Wogan’s family announced his passing earlier this month. Wogan’s battle with cancer was relatively short, pulling out of November’s Children In Need at the last minute due to poor health.
Numerous celebrities have taken to social media to share their condolences with Paul Daniels and his family. Paul Chuckle, one half of British comedian duo The Chuckle Brothers, tweeted “all our love to you mate!” while Steven Allan said, “love to him and Debbie.”
That is the first time I have heartfelt and genuinely wished Paul Daniels could really make something disappear. Poor chap, awful news.
— Giles Dilnot (@reporterboy) February 20, 2016
Dynamo, a British illusionist, shared his love and respect for the magician on his own Instagram account, while children’s presenters Dick and Dom’s official Twitter feed said how the news was heartbreaking. Paul is a man who has helped inspire many, and encouraged people to follow their dreams, leading them to be in the business they are today.
Fans have also taken to social media to share their condolences and sadness. His name is trending on various social media networks, as fans share their experiences meeting him and learning magic—mostly card tricks—from him. Like many celebrities, he inspired them to follow their dreams and have fun in life. Some did admit that he could be irritating at times, but that did not take away from his big heart and excellent skill in magic.
— The Sun (@TheSun) February 20, 2016
It is unknown how long doctors have given Paul and whether he will go through any treatments. While the tumor is incurable, treatments may be available to help ease the symptoms if he chooses to go through with them.
Sorry to hear about Paul Daniels. One by one the icons from my youth are starting to struggle. Hope he gets plenty of time yet
— Chris Nicholson (@mullet69uk) February 20, 2016
Some fans have noted how the story is more sad news for the entertainment industry. As well as Bowie, Rickman and Wogan, numerous other big names have passed away since the start of 2016. Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird, passed away recently; her death announced on Friday. Paul Daniels is not dead yet, but the entertainment world is likely to lose another big name in 2016.
[Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images]