Last night, classic Boston boy band New Kids On The Block stormed the stage in New York City–and halfway through the set, Jonathan Knight walked off. Billboard reported that fans pleaded and screamed for his return, but to no avail. Later, Knight tweeted, “I’m sorry……” . In the past Knight has spoken openly about his struggles with crippling anxiety, and during last night’s set he seemed rattled, out of synch and at one point, was distracted by a cell phone call on stage.
In 2001, Knight sat down with Oprah Winfrey to discuss how being in the boy band pushed him into an abyss of anxiety and panic attacks. He told her:
“The whole New Kids thing was crazy. The more it grew, the more I just felt like I was trapped. I just always had this feeling inside me of always being nervous and afraid of situations…From 1994 to 1997, I did nothing. I slept and slept and slept. If I was awake, I had to deal with things, I had to do things. In order to avoid that, I would just stay in bed.”
Social anxiety disorder is a common mental illness and many other famous performers like Barbra Streisand, Carly Simon and Adele have discussed how anxiety and stage fright has kept them off the stage.
One great thing for Knight is he seems to have the unfaltering support of his bandmates and fans. Joey McIntyre said during the concert, “We love Jonathan and he loves us.” And many fans tweeted back notes telling him not to be sorry.
We hope Knight makes a speedy recovery and feels better soon!
[Photo Credit: Getty Images]