She’s been entertaining Australians for decades and cabaret performer Carlotta has revealed she was recently diagnosed with cancer.
The former Beauty and the Beast star exclusively told New Idea that her upcoming 75th birthday will be a double celebration after she recently overcame the frightening cancer diagnosis. The television personality admitted being terrified when she was told. Thankfully, the tumour was found early and she’s feeling healthier than ever.
“I’m in the all-clear and feeling better than ever, but it was a big wake-up call to get things checked out the moment you feel something isn’t right,” she told New Idea.
According to the publication, the Number 96 star noticed there was a problem in March when she thought she had a simple urinary tract infection. When it didn’t clear up, she saw a specialist who confirmed there was a cancerous tumour growing in her bladder.
The star underwent surgery to have it removed and explained that because it was discovered early by an oncologist, the disease hadn’t spread.
“Mercifully, the disease hadn’t spread because my oncologist said it was discovered early,” she said.
Carlotta was born Richard Byron in 1943 and remains one of the country’s most well-known transgender people. Most recently, she’d been appearing as a regular on Network Ten’s Studio 10. At the height of last year’s same-sex marriage debate, she used her platform on the popular show to explain that she’d been fighting her whole life for acceptance.
“I’ve been fighting my whole life to be accepted, you know, and I’m still fighting for it,” she said, fighting back tears. “It’s only places like Studio 10 and Beauty and the Beast that give me the acceptance.”
Carlotta departed the show earlier this year and shared an update with fans on Facebook.
“Thank you all for the support from my exit from Studio 10,” she wrote. “I wish the show the greatest success in the future as I had the most wonderful time working on it for the last 4 years. Cheers lovies.”
Sadly, she’s not the only Studio 10 star who has revealed a cancer diagnosis in recent times. Jono Coleman recently revealed he has been battling aggressive prostate cancer since last June, but chose to keep it secret so he could continue working – something he credits with keeping him busy and helping him cope with his devastating illness.
He only found out his diagnosis following a routine check-up with his GP, who discovered it had spread to his lymph nodes, spine and bones. Within days he was booked in for rounds of radiotherapy, chemotherapy and hormone injections.