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The Music JANUARY 20, 2016 - by Staff Writers

THE PASSING OF DAVID BOWIE

On Monday January 11 Australian time, it was confirmed that celebrated pop culture icon David Bowie passed away at the age of sixty-nine from a range of health problems, foremost of which was a concealed and extended fight with cancer.

The news was originally broken on Bowie's official social media channels, including Facebook and Twitter, as well as his website. Despite the source several fans initially questioned, hopefully, whether the news was a hoax, a not unfounded assumption - several public figures have fallen prey to the 'celebrity death hoax' in recent years from Justin Bieber to Morgan Freeman.

However, following a report from The Hollywood Reporter that claimed a representative had confirmed Bowie's passing, his son, Duncan Jones - formerly known as Zowie Bowie - further drove home the reality on his own official Twitter account.

"David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous eighteen-month battle with cancer," the original post read. "While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family's privacy during their time of grief."

"Very sorry and sad to say it's true," Jones responded on Twitter in a post featuring a picture of the Warcraft director as a youth along with his famous father. "I'll be offline for a while. Love to all."

Ivo Van Hove, the director of Bowie's Broadway musical Lazarus, has claimed that the singer told him over a year ago that he was suffering from liver cancer.

Speaking to Dutch broadcaster Nos.nl, Van Hove said, "He told me more than one year and three months ago that he had liver cancer, just after he had been told this himself."

During an interview with nrc.nl, the Belgian theatre director also claimed that Bowie told very few people about his illness. "The cast didn't know all that time, and I suspect that the musicians with whom he recorded Blackstar didn't know either," he said. "He made every effort to complete those two projects on time, not to let his illness win."

"He was ill, but he wanted to live!" said Van Hove, adding that, "He wanted this show to go ahead, and he wanted this last album, Blackstar, to be released. He continued to make music until the very last moment. I have an unbelievable amount of admiration for how he really scraped together his strengths in order to still achieve this."

Other details have emerged in the wake of Bowie's untimely death, with reports suggesting that the UK born star suffered from persistent heart problems from other health issues as well as the cancer that would finally take his life.

Biographer Wendy Leigh, who published the book Bowie: The Biography in 2014, has alleged to BBC (via The Independent) that, "Physically, he didn't just battle cancer, if that's not enough, he had six heart attacks in recent years," Leigh said.


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