You would never know judging by her great 2018 Oscar performance but The Greatest Showman star, Keala Settle, revealed she suffered from a stroke just one week before the “biggest performance” of her life.
The Tony Award nominated, Broadway star opened up to People about the horrific ordeal that occurred just one week before she was to perform the Oscar-nominated hit, “This Is Me.” Settle suffered from a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which can produce similar symptoms to that of a stroke. Thankfully, the singer’s physical faculties returned to normal after about twenty minutes.
“It was like someone cracked an egg on the top of my head and then drew a line on my body, turning one half off. My body started drooping immediately. I tried to put my hands up to my face, but I could only move my left arm. I couldn’t talk because part of my tongue was immobile. I tried to stand, but there was nothing. I was panicked. I let out this wail because I was so scared and the room went silent. All I could figure out how to say was ‘Help.’ It could have happened at any time. It just so happened to happen a week before the biggest performance of my life.”
From the TIA, doctors actually discovered that Settle suffers from a condition called Moyamoya disease. The disease creates tiny blood vessels in the brain to compensate for the collated carotiod arteries that can stop oxygen from reaching the brain. Settle noted that the disease is common in Pacific Islander women. On why she chose to perform at the Oscar’s and delay surgery she said:
“I’m used to working in the theater and the show must go on.”
To relive the miraculous performance that almost didn’t happen, click below!