Al Di Meola thanks fans for ‘love, support’ after suffering heart attack on stage

Guitarist Al Di Meola thanked fans for their love and support and promised to resume touring in 2024 after suffering a heart attack during a performance in Romania on Wednesday.

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Di Meola, 69, known for his work on guitar with the 1970s jazz fusion group Return to Forever, suffered a heart attack in Bucharest, Variety reported. The Grammy Award winner began to grab his chest in the middle of his set before reportedly walking off stage, according to the magazine.

The other two members of Di Meola continued to play before announcing that the show was over, Variety reported.

In a statement to The Associated Press, the Bagdasar-Arseni emergency hospital said Di Meola was admitted to a cardiology ward where he is being treated for a segment elevation myocardial infarction, or STEMI.

In a statement posted to his Facebook page on Thursday, Di Meola expressed his “deepest gratitude for the incredible outpouring of love and support that I’ve received during the last 24 hours.”

“Unfortunately, I’m facing a medical situation that requires some time off from performing and touring,” the musician wrote. “I want to assure you that I’m receiving the best care possible, and I’m fully committed to making a complete recovery.”

Di Meola added that he plans to hit the road again in 2024, adding that “I’m already looking forward to making music together once again.”

The artist’s post also featured an official statement from his team. He said that his 2023 shows would be postponed and that tickets would be valid for rescheduled shows, Variety reported.

“Al Di Meola, along with his team, deeply appreciates the support and understanding of his fans during this challenging time,” the statement read. “He is eager to return to the stage and share his music with you all once again.”

Playing with Return to Forever during the 1970s, Di Meola teamed with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White, People reported. He has also collaborated with guitarists John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia, the magazine reported.

Di Meola won a Grammy in the category of Best Jazz Performance by a Group for “No Mystery.”

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