Greg Page Leaves The Wiggles
30 November, 2006
GREG PAGE LEAVES THE WIGGLES
[Gregs Video Message]
(tip: click on the video file, which will open in a new window, to commence download before reading the article due to video file size being 14MB)
Thursday November 30
The Wiggles have sadly announced today that Greg Page, also known as the Yellow Wiggle, is unable to continue performing with The Wiggles due to a chronic condition and has reached the decision to leave the group.
Greg has been suffering symptoms for many months, affecting his ability to perform. The condition is related to blood pressure and while in no way life threatening it affects his balance, breathing and coordination at unpredictable times and with varying severity. Greg has discovered he is genetically predisposed to this condition and that he now needs to focus on managing his health.
Greg is a founding member of The Wiggles and has devoted 15 years to the group. The whole band, crew, and all Wiggles staff, have expressed their sadness and their wishes for Greg to overcome his health problems.
The Wiggles this year have continued their worldwide success, just completing a tour of the US, and have announced Greg’s replacement with his understudy Sam Moran to ensure the continued future of one of Australia’s most successful entertainment troupes.
“This emotional decision was one which was very difficult, as I have dedicated almost half my life to the Wiggles, and with a question mark over my health, I feel that this is the right decision. I will miss The Wiggles and the other guys very much, as well as seeing all the children in the audiences that we perform in front of. I wish the guys continued success, and welcome Sam Moran with open arms to the Yellow Skivvy – I know he is a great performer, and is well equipped to be the Yellow Wiggle,” Greg said.
Sam has been performing with The Wiggles for the past nine years and as understudy has performed over 150 shows as the Yellow Wiggle. Educated at the Conservatorium of Music, Sam has been a Wiggly dancer, Wiggly band member and will be a wonderful addition to the group.
Murray Cook (Red Wiggle) said, “I know I speak for all The Wiggles and our staff in expressing our sadness at Greg’s leaving. The four of us started from humble beginnings 15 years ago and we’ve been through many adventures together. We will miss Greg as a superb singer, performer and songwriter but mostly we’ll miss him on the road as a friend and ally. We wish him well in dealing with his illness and in future.”
“We welcome Sam in his place in the Wiggles. We know first hand that he is an extremely talented performer and is already well-loved by our Wiggly audience”.
The Wiggles will continue to tour the world, record and film new DVDs with Sam Moran as the new Yellow Wiggle.
For further information, please contact:
Dianna O’Neill Publicity
Mobile 0418 468 148
MEDICAL CONDITION BACKGROUND
Greg Page is afflicted with a condition known as orthostatic intolerance. Put simply, it means that when Greg stands up, his heart does not compensate for the change in posture by pumping more blood around his body for it to function properly. A similar problem occurs when there is a change in the environment such as a warm room or hot weather.
This condition is causing problems with his walking, balance, speech and coordination. It relates to the proper functioning of the autonomic nervous system, which is the way the human body regulates things we don’t consciously have to think about such as heart beat and temperature regulation.
As many as 30,000 people in Australia suffer orthostatic intolerance at varying levels of severity. The condition is notoriously difficult to diagnose. Greg is currently suffering a severe and chronic case but episodes, specialists now believe, date back some 12 years. At that time, testing was inconclusive, because the symptoms were mild to moderate, sporadic, and could have been attributed to a number of causes. All major organs in his body were functioning properly, so there was no further testing done. It is possible that his most recent bouts of illness with two hernias (prior to Oct 05) brought on the orthostatic intolerance with increased severity.
There is no diagnosis of the cause for this condition in Greg’s case yet. It is clear, from extensive testing, that his heart is perfect and functioning normally, however his brain is not communicating properly with his heart and, from time to time, in unpredictable circumstances, results in the onset of symptoms.
Greg is still seeking further prognosis and advice on how to manage his condition from specialists. Although it is not life threatening, it is also not likely to be cured so will require careful management to keep it under control. Stepping back from the very strenuous live performance demands of being part of the Wiggles is now his only option.
“Although orthostatic intolerance is not uncommon in the world population, its symptoms can be mild enough to remain undetected or extremely difficult to diagnose, or it can be dormant for a long time and brought on spontaneously by a trigger, sometimes something seemingly trivial, as it seems likely could be in Greg’s case, or it could be the two hernias that he had last year.”
“Then the symptoms can become chronic and incapacitate normally healthy active people to an enormous, and highly unpredictable, degree. Greg is fortunate he is not at the fully disabled extreme of the condition, but he is currently suffering a level of the condition that requires considerable further assessment and development of a plan to manage the condition, as it is not likely to be cured, but we expect we can minimise the impact on his life in the future,” said Associate Professor John Watson, Neurologist.
The symptoms for this condition may include the following:
• Excessive Fatigue
• Exercise Intolerance
• Weakness - most noticeable in the legs
• Chest Discomfort
• Shortness of Breath
• Migraines and Other Headaches
• Gastrointestinal Problems