A tenor takes on thyroid cancer – and wins

A tenor takes on thyroid cancer – and wins


norman lebrecht

January 31, 2018

Toby Spence has been talking to the Times this morning about his five-year struggle with advanced thyroid cancer, and how Freudian psychoanalysis helped him cope.

Working in New York, he set up his laptop behind his head to skype his (unseen) therapist, getting up at “unbelievable hours” because of the time zone. “I would see the sun coming up on those days and I would just talk.”

He’s about to open in Satyagraha at ENO.

Full interview here.

Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera


  • G Bernstein says:

    I’m really very sorry to learn this. I’ve seen and heard him several times and enjoyed his singing. I hope he makes a complete and speedy recovery. A refuah shelemah.

  • Jeffrey Biegel says:

    Glad to hear the good news. Did he have radio-iodine to beat this?

  • Ana Luiza Daltro says:

    I saw Toby singing the role of Captain Vere in a fantastic “Billy Bud” production at Teatro Real de Madrid last year. He was just outstanding! An incredible singer and artist. I did not know about this and am so glad he is fully recovered now.