Michael Buble has reportedly relinquished duties as host of next month’s Brit Awards as the Canadian crooner and his wife focus their energies on their sick child.
Buble’s participation in the British recording industry’s big night had been in doubt since he announced last November his son Noah was battling cancer. The singer and his wife Luisana Lopilato vowed to step away from their careers to focus on the youngster’s treatment and they’ve stayed true to those words.
Buble has stayed off social media since the diagnosis and he canceled his performance at the December 2016 BBC Music Awards. Various media reports suggest he’s now withdrawn from the 2017 BRITs, though organizers have yet to confirm his absence and a replacement hasn’t been named.
The Independent quotes a source as saying: “He will always be welcome at the BRITs but it’s important that he is with his family. It would not look good to be singing and dancing on stage while his son is so ill.”
In other news, Robbie Williams is the latest addition to the list of Brit Awards performers.
The pop star is already the most-awarded BRITs winner in history, with 18 trophies as a solo artist and as a member of Take That. That tally includes the Brits Icon Award Williams received last November, an honor presented to artists whose writing, recording and performances have set them apart as having made a “lasting impact” on the nation’s culture (Elton John and the late David Bowie are the only other recipients).
“I’m delighted to be performing at the BRITs once again,” Robbie says in a statement. “It’s always a special night for music – this year feels like a big one”.
The British singer is coming off another big year. His most recent album The Heavy Entertainment Show, his first with Sony Music, opened at the top of the Official U.K. Albums Chart last November for his 12th No. 1.
Williams joins Little Mix, The 1975 and Emeli Sandé as the first confirmed performers at the 2017 Brit Awards, which will be held Feb. 22 at London’s O2 Arena. Little Mix, Rihanna and Skepta are the early leaders with three nods each while David Bowie and Leonard Cohen are posthumously nominated.