Tony Award Nominee Melissa Errico Will Have Vocal Cord Procedure
By Adam Hetrick
Tony Award nominee Melissa Errico, who was forced to withdraw from the Off-Broadway revival of Passion due to complications from bronchitis, will undergo vocal surgery in the coming weeks, the actress revealed May 10.
Errico (Amour, High Society), who starred as Clara in the Classic Stage Company revival of Passion, was sidelined from the production in late March with bronchitis. A prolonged recovery period, which included vocal rest on doctor's orders, kept Errico from returning to Passion, which ended its extended run April 19. Her vocal injury also prevents her from being part of the upcoming cast album of Passion. Read more about the album here.
In a May 10 message on her Facebook page, Errico shared with friends and fans that she would undergo a procedure to repair a blood vessel on her vocal cord. The acclaimed soprano is under the care of Dr. Steven Zeitels, whose patients include Adele, Aerosmith's Steven Tyler, Julie Andrews and mezzo soprano Frederica von Stade.
"We are athletes and we have setbacks like any athlete would," Errico told Playbill.com. She said she expects to have the procedure within the next ten days. A three-week recovery period is standard, which Errico characterized as "remarkably quick."
"I was pretty nervous about posting," Errico said of sharing her news. "Not because I am concerned about myself, as much, [but] you never know what will happen when you are open and transparent."
She said she's been overwhelmed with support of friends and fans who reached out. Errico is also maintaining a sense of humor – pistachio and dark chocolate sorbet will likely be her recovery indulgences – and the busy mother of three young children is looking for a perfect text-to-speech app for her phone while on vocal rest.
Her husband, tennis player Patrick McEnroe, has put his professional commitments on hold in order to help with caring for their daughters. "We have been focused on supporting our three little girls through a very challenging period. They don't have any idea what is going on, but they continue to need fairy dress up parties and the show must go on. Only one of my three daughters can read (Victoria just turned 7, and the twins are 4) so it is a challenge to be on voice rest," Errico said.
Earlier this week, Playbill.com broke the news that PS Classics was forced to continue with its scheduled recording sessions with Passion – enlisting Tony Award nominee Rebecca Luker to sing the role of Clara on disc. "Obviously, we were devastated to get the news from Melissa that, after being cleared to sing, she was being put on vocal rest again," PS Classics co-founder and producer Tommy Krasker told Playbill.com. "We were especially devastated for her; it's an awful thing for an actor to have happen. At this point there was no way we could postpone a second time. We're all hoping Melissa gets better soon, and our thoughts are with her..."
Errico added, "The support I have felt from fans and friends is very moving... I learned a lot from the production of Passion about my own love for the theatre, and I gave that show my heart and soul. My dedication to Sondheim will be lifelong."
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