Rita Lee, 75, rarely appeared in a photo shared by her husband, the musician and composer Roberto de Carvalho. Known as the Queen of Rock, the singer has recovered from the cancer that affected her left lung.
Cancer was discovered in May 2021. Rita was 73 at the time and was undergoing routine physicals when she discovered the tumor. On the same occasion, the team already announced that she would undergo immunotherapy and radiotherapy.
Rita Lee retired from the stage in 2012. Then, at the age of 64, in a show at the traditional Circo Voador in Rio de Janeiro, Rita announced that she was leaving the stage. This was her first appearance on stage under the arches of Lapa, and she explained: “I was going to say that this is my penultimate show, but I already consider it my last. Yes… I will retire from the stage.” The last official show took place days later in Aracaju (SE). However, she later held two more presentations, one in DF and the other in downtown São Paulo.
According to her own statements, Rita has not retired from music. The ‘black sheep’ later clarified on her Twitter account that she would never step away from the songs: “I retire from shows, never from music. Anyone who saw me yesterday can well appreciate my physical fragility confirm. I leave the scene absolutely in love with you”.
withdrawal from public life
Rita has stopped dying her hair and lives in a remote place in the interior of São Paulo. Pulling back the traditional red locks and adopting the gray hair, the artist explained that she wishes to “remain anonymous”. Rita and Roberto live on the premises surrounded by nature and animals.
I am a professional [da quarentena]. And suddenly I saw myself growing old. And getting old came as a surprise to me because I’ve never been old in my life. I wanted to live my old age away from the stage. Do not share with the public.
Rita Lee in an interview with Fantástico in 2020
Increased isolation during cancer treatment, and Rita’s statements came from Roberto de Carvalho and the couple’s eldest son, Beto Lee. In most published photos, Rita wore a hat to hide her short hair. During the treatment there were more than 30 sessions of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Little by little, she dropped the hats on occasional social media posts.
Singer wanted to keep “energy and good spirits” in treatment. This is what she said in an interview she gave to the newspaper O Globo after the diagnosis: “I made a pact with the universe, with the Creator, with the “beings of light” that I will restrain the rod of the lung cancer. But it is not easy. How many times have I said that in life I have to pay a toll? It was breath after breath: “Stop smoking. You’ve smoked since you were 22, stop now.” Spirit.”
The cure was confirmed in April 2022, after carrying out new routine examinations. The singer received the news that she was 100% healed. The artist even gave the tumor the nickname “Jair” in a goodnatured way, according to Beto. “My mother’s healing blew me to death. The best news ever. Holding her head high, ready to fight, she faced it all with her usual good humor, so much so that she nicknamed the tumor ‘Jair’. This is Rita,” wrote: in a post on Instagram.
But she remains cautious even after remission, and follows a quieter routine on the farm alongside her husband. The two make infrequent updates about their routine and life as a couple, preferring to prioritize rest and peace.