The show went on. Months after losing her beloved husband René Angélil, Celine Dion took to the Billboard Music Awards stage on May 22 to deliver a powerful performance of Queen’s 1991 classic, The Show Must Go On before accepting the evening’s Icon Award.
Following a standing ovation from the star-studded crowd, the 48-year-old was moved to tears by a surprise appearance by her son René-Charles Angelil. The 15-year-old presented his mother with the award, which has only been bestowed on four other musicians — Neil Diamond, Stevie Wonder, Jennifer Lopez and Prince.
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"I'm so sorry. I'm sorry for crying. I want to be so strong for my family and my kids. And I didn't expect that. I'm so sorry," she told the Las Vegas crowd. "I don't want to cry in front of you. You make me so happy. Thank you."
The iconic singer then proceeded to thank her fans, who supported her music during difficult times. She said, “This is such a tremendous honor of course. You know music has been my passion since before I can almost remember. So many people have helped me get to where I am today. I cannot name them all... Most especially I want to thank the fans for traveling through music with me in good and bad times... my family, my mom who wrote my first song. My children.”
Celine concluded her speech saying, “Most importantly my beloved husband whom I know will continue to watch over me from up above. Rene this one’s for you. The show must go on."
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René died on January 14 after losing his long battle with cancer. Celine and the late music manager shared three children together including René-Charles and twins Nelson and Eddy, 5.
The Power of Love singer made her triumphant return to the stage in February following René's death. She told audience goers, "I understood that my career was in a way his masterpiece, his song, his symphony. The idea of leaving it unfinished would have hurt him terribly. I realized that if he ever left us, I would have to continue without him, for him."