Elvis Presley made emergency stage exit – told fans ‘health is fine’ | Music | Entertainment

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Towards the end of ‘s life, he only had a few things left going for him. After his wife, , left him, he threw himself into his work.

He took on a residency slot in Las Vegas where he played hundreds of shows throughout the 1970s. But according to the Elvis History Blog, he also hit the road in 1977, and during this tour, he made a stop off in Baltimore.

On this day, May 29, in 1977, Elvis played Baltimore to the sold-out Baltimore Civic Center – but he couldn’t handle being on stage for the entire set.

According to a Variety review from June 1, 1977, writer Marty Bennett said Elvis “walked out” of the show, before returning and citing a bizarre reason for his disappearance.

Marty wrote that Elvis looked extremely bleak when he finally hit the stage after his support acts concluded. He described the King as “heavy-eyelidded and appeared to most observers to be weak and tired”. (sic)

READ MORE: Elvis’ guitarist James Burton praises ‘wonderful’ King’s kindness in private

Marty continued: “Presley, paunchy and apparently pained, first did 30 minutes marked by anaemic singing, a few stilted attempts at his patented gyrations, bewildering patter and awkward stage movement that included having an aide hand-hold his voice mike.”

Elvis then announced he would be leaving the stage without warning. His enormous entourage reportedly “went into ad-lib mode” as the enormous audience stood around looking confused at what was going on.

Elvis’ pals did their best to entertain crowds and even brought an opera singer on to perform, but eventually, the King made an unexpected return to explain what had happened.

After a 30-minute absence, Elvis casually strolled on the stage once more and told his fans what had happened.

Elvis explained he had “a twisted ankle” before adding: “When nature calls you don’t fool around with nature.”

He also allegedly insisted that there “was nothing wrong with his health”. An official from the Civic Center later confirmed Elvis was “on medication” and had been “treated by a physician” during the 30-minute delay.

Marty went on to recall: “As he politely and apologetically tried to recoup his losses … He repeatedly thanked the audience for hanging with him and said ambiguously, ‘If you want us back we’ll come back.’”

Marty commented that, once Elvis finished performing, there was no standing ovation. “Patrons exited shaking their heads and speculating on what was wrong with him,” he described.

A spokesperson for the Civic Center reportedly later explained Elvis’ “murmuring, swearing and unscheduled hiatus” by blaming it on an “intestinal problem”.

Fans will recall that, less than three months later, on August 16, 1977, Elvis would be found dead on his bathroom floor in , seemingly struggling once again with these intestinal issues.

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