Michael Flatley melanoma: cancer diagnosis explained, Riverdance star’s net worth - does he have a wife?
The Irish-American dancer and choreographer was previously diagnosed with melanoma in 2003
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Michael Flatley has been diagnosed with an “aggressive” form of cancer and “undergone surgery” according to a post on his social media.
The 64-year-old Irish-American dancer and choreographer rose to fame after his seven-minute performance during the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994. He went on to direct his own theatre show, Riverdance and additional shows including: Lord of the Dance, Feet of Flames and Celtic Tiger.
In a post on Instagram, his team confirmed that he has been “diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer” and asked for “prayers and well wishes”.
Flatley had previously been diagnosed with melanoma in 2003 after a fan spotted it when he was doing an interview with MTV.
So, what has Michael Flatley said about his cancer diagnosis? Here’s what we know so far.
Who is Michael Flatley?
Flatley is a 64-year-old Irish-American dancer and choreographer who was born in Chicago. He took dance lessons in the city and would later tour with Irish Traditional band The Chieftains before finding fame after his performance during the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994.
He went on to direct his own theatre show, Riverdance which premiered in Dublin’s Point Theatre in 1995 and produced additional shows including: Lord of the Dance, Feet of Flames and Celtic Tiger.
Flatley retired from dancing in 2017 after suffering an injury during a performance in Las Vegas on St Patrick’s Day.
What has he said about his cancer diagnosis?
Flatley’s team shared the news of his cancer diagnosis on social media alongside a black and white photo of the Irish-American dancer looking out to sea. They confirmed to fans that he had been diagnosed with an “aggressive form” of cancer and had “undergone surgery”.
The caption reads: “Dear friends, we have something personal to share, Michael Flatley has been diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer. He has undergone surgery and is in the care of an excellent team of doctors. No further comments will be made at this time. We ask only for your prayers and well wishes. Thank you.”
Flatley was previously diagnosed with skin cancer in 2003 after it was spotted by a fan during an interview he did on MTV. Speaking about his diagnosis in the Irish Independent in 2021 he explained: “It was purely by chance that it was noticed. I had never even noticed it.”
What is his net worth?
According to Celebrity Net Worth, the Irish dancer has an estimated net worth of $350 million.
Is he married?
Flatley is married to Irish dancer Niamh O’Brien. The pair first met in spring 2006 after she performed in his show and announced their engagement in August of that year. The couple have a son together, Michael Saint James who is kept largely out of the public eye.
Flatley has been married before, previously to Polish hairdresser Beata Dziaba who he met while dancing in London in 1985 with The Chieftains. Their relationship ended in 1997 after Flately allegedly had an affair with another dancer.
What is Melanoma?
Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that can spread to other areas of the body. According to the NHS, it is the fifth most common cancer in the UK, with one in four cases impacting people under the age of 50.
The disease is thought to be caused by exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet light, with signs and symptoms of melanoma including a new mole or changes to an existing mole such as an unusual shape, it being larger than normal, itching or bleeding.
Things that can increase your risks of developing melanoma include having:
- lots of moles or freckles
- pale skin that burns easily
- red or blonde hair
- a close family member who’s had melanoma
Melanoma is treated by surgery, although it is not always preventable chances of developing the disease can be reduced by staying out of the sun and avoiding sunburn.
You can find out more about skin cancer on Cancer Research UK’s website.