Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Famer Chuck Berry collapsed over his keyboards about an hour into his “Winter Dance” show before a standing-room only crowd Saturday night at the Congress Theater.
The 84-year-old Berry’s head lay on a keyboard, and he didn’t move for a couple of minutes before he was helped off stage by three people shortly before 10:30 p.m. He returned 20 minutes later after most of the auditorium had cleared out. He tuned up his guitar and tried to play before telling the audience he had no strength. He then did a variation of his legendary duck walk off stage.
A Chicago Fire Department ambulance was called to the theater on the Northwest Side, and emergency crews gave Berry a check-up at the scene, Fire Department Spokesman Joe Roccasalva said. But he said he “felt better” and signed a refusal for further medical treatment, Roccasalva said.
Hopefully Chuck will be fine, but this seems eerily reminiscent of fellow rock and roll pioneer Bo Diddley’s penultimate concert.