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Grow Through... Health Issues & Illness

Anthony Roth Costanzo on Growing Through Thyroid Cancer

Grow Through It: Health Issues & Illness

Anthony Roth Costanzo, opera singer, performer and producer, tells his story of growing through thyroid cancer after receiving a diagnosis when he was in his 20s and in graduate school.

He knew he had to get his thyroid removed quickly. Since the thyroid sits on top of the vocal nerves, its removal can affect your speaking and singing. So, it was a tricky surgery for a singer.

The diagnosis made him think about his priorities and how he defined himself. Was he defined only by his singing, or by who he was in a larger sense?

He tried to stay optimistic and keep a sense of humor throughout the process. He chose not to tell everyone right away, and surrounded himself with people who would be there in the right way for him.

He was disciplined about doing what he needed to do to heal. After two months, he could sing again. And it was then that he started to have success as a singer.

He reminds himself daily how extraordinary it is to be healthy and to have the ability to do the things we can do.

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