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OTRC: George Michael cancels Australian tour dates due to anxiety

A photo of George Michael featured on his official Facebook page posted on March 13, 2012. (Facebook.com/georgemichael)

George Michael canceled his Australian tour dates and explained in an announcement on Saturday, September 29, that he is seeking treatment to cope with anxiety he developed after being hospitalized for pneumonia last year.

"I have today announced the cancellation of the shows in Australia which breaks my heart," Michael said in a statement on his official website. "By way of explanation all I can say at this time is that since last year's illness I have tried in vain to work my way through the trauma that the doctors who saved my life warned me I would experience."

"They recommended complete rest and the type of post traumatic counseling which is available in cases like mine but I'm afraid I believed (wrongly) that making music and getting out there to perform for the audiences that bring me such joy would be therapy enough in itself," Michael's statement continued. "Unfortunately I seriously underestimated how difficult this year would be and although I was right to believe that the shows would bring me great happiness and that my voice would recover completely (I truly think that some of my recent performances have been my best ever) I was wrong to think I could work my way through the major anxiety that has plagued me since I left Austria last December."

"All that's left for me to do is apologize to my wonderful Australian fan base and to promise faithfully that as soon as I completed these shows here in the UK I will receive the treatment which is so long overdue," he added.

Michael's first show in Australia was supposed to happen on November 10 in Perth and the tour had a total of nine dates. Tickets for the show will be refunded.

Michael, 49, was hospitalized with life-threatening pneumonia in November 2011 in Vienna and he spent a month in the hospital, according to the BBC. The illness forced him to postpone several dates on his Symphonica Tour.

The singer recently performed during the London 2012 Olympic Closing Ceremony. Michael's solo career hit it big with his 1987 "Faith" album which featured hit songs like "I Want Your Sex," "Father Figure" and the title hit "Faith."

Michael released a new single called "White Light" to the radio in June.

"Today marks the 30th anniversary of the day that "Wham! Rap", George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley's first single, entered the British charts," a statement on his official website posted on June 29 said. "To celebrate and commemorate 30 wonderful years, George chose today to release his new single "White Light" to radio."

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