June 19, 2024

Corona caused a-ha to cancel concerts

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A few weeks ago we reported about a string of canceled concerts of a-ha. Whereas it was first said that Morten suffered from laryngitis, it now was revealed that both Morten Harket and Paul Waaktaar-Savoy were also diagnosed with covid-19 after the Oslo Spektrum concert on 20 May.

It doesn’t come as a surprise as the entire Side-Line team who was present at the show actually also got infected there, luckily with minor consequences.

The news was confirmed by a-ha manager Harald Wiik to VG. Morten began to feel signs of irregularities in his throat on Friday 20 May during the first concert in Oslo Spektrum and his condition worsened during the night. The next day, Harket was diagnosed with laryngitis and the concert later in the evening had to be canceled. The same thing happened with two concerts in Bournemouth and Liverpool. On Monday 23 May, both Morten Harket and Paul Waaktaar-Savoy tested positive for covid-19.

A new medical examination concluded that it was likely that Morten’s laryngitis was caused by covid-19 and thus also the two concerts in London and Birmingham got canceled.

Morten: “When your body denies you access to what is otherwise a matter of course, you are completely parked. It is very frustrating to go in a circle in the waiting room and not be able to say where this is going, from day to day, to everyone else who also has their plans put on hold. It is almost unbelievable that I have escaped with so little dropout through almost 40 years of touring. A cold can be enough to strain a bone on a large appliance. For my part, it is almost impossible to avert all close contact with volatile groups of people during tours, in lobbies, elevators, in and out of hotels or at airports.”

Paul Waaktaar-Savoy: “We have had incredibly few cancellations during 30 years of tournaments, so we are not used to this. I’ve been using N95 masks pretty much constantly from the time I walked out the door at home in Venice, California until recently where it started to get more lax in the backstage area, plus we started getting more together on stage. Big mistake!”

Harket’s voice is not completely recovered, “the healing process has been a bit messy”, but the last few days have been stably better and given hope that he can be on stage this weekend.

author avatar
Bernard - Side-Line Staff Chief editor
Bernard Van Isacker is the Chief Editor of Side-Line Magazine. With a career spanning more than two decades, Van Isacker has established himself as a respected figure in the darkwave scene.

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