Pink has had to postpone her physically demanding shows due to illness. (Pic: Richard Wainwright/AAP)
Pink has had to postpone her physically demanding shows due to illness. (Pic: Richard Wainwright/AAP)

Pink, ignore the haters. Real fans wish you well

IT'S been fascinating watching social media users become medical experts over Pink's Sydney hospitalisation.

"How many 'regular people' would actually be hospitalised with dehydration?," one Twitter user snarkily pondered.

Judging by the unpleasant tweets that followed this gent is not a Pink fan. Her gastric virus does not impact him in any way.

That has not stopped him, and way too many other keyboard heroes, kicking Pink while she's down.

How could she do a show on the Saturday night in Sydney if she was really that sick? Why didn't they give people more notice when they pulled the Monday night show?

A few facts. Postponed or cancelled concerts (and Pink's are postponed, with her also announcing she will play in Sydney on Saturday) are something every tour promoter dreads. It's always a last resort.

Artists and promoters do this for a living. They know the repercussions - for themselves and punters. They know people have paid for travel, accommodation, babysitters, parking and booze. That's why they avoid it at all costs but sometimes the show just can't go on.

Most fans have been very understanding, including some en route to the show in Sydney on Monday when it was pulled at the eleventh hour.

Pink's work ethic is second to none. As any of the 600,000 or so people who've seen Pink perform a concert in Australia over the last decade knows, her shows are not just any concert.

She literally swings upside down, flies over the crowd, performs many songs above the stage, not on it, and the entire show is timed with military-grade precision. There's blasts of fire, hoists to propel her in the air, parts of the stage that open and shut and active treadmills - a potential minefield for someone not in top health. A virus can be treated way more quickly than a broken bone.

This week a betting company allowed (cough) fans to wager on how many more shows Pink would not perform, claiming winnings could be an "insurance policy" if they lost money related to postponed shows. When questioned if they felt it was tacky to try and launch such a publicity stunt while a woman was in hospital they wished her a speedy recovery but said Pink's was not a "life-threatening illness."

That might be true, but there are half a dozen different aerial feats in Pink's show that could go horribly wrong if everything didn't go 100-per-cent to plan, or she wasn't on top form.

Pink's Byron Bay break last week had long been scheduled. She's been touring since March across the US and Canada.

She performed 17 in 25 days since her tour started in Perth on July 3 and the first Melbourne leg ended on July 28. She never plays more than two shows in a row without a night off. Imagine doing a two hour cardio workout each night and also singing. Due to her popularity in Australia she's shoehorned in more dates than most artists would.

Pink’s concerts are extremely physically demanding, and require her to be in top health. (Pic: Andrew Henshaw)
Pink’s concerts are extremely physically demanding, and require her to be in top health. (Pic: Andrew Henshaw)

This is also the first tour Pink has conducted with two kids travelling with her. She doesn't have a phalanx of nannies, she's a hands-on mother. There's a long history of female artists who've tapped out for a decade to enjoy motherhood; she's decided to be a working mother.

Some idiots on social media are claiming that postponing shows or not fighting through her illness (you know, the one she was hospitalised over) demonstrates she doesn't respect Australia, her "cash cow", enough.

Pink is spending two months of this year touring just Australia. And that's a short time stretch this time around.

She was based in Australia for three months on her previous tour, and closer to four months on the Funhouse tour in 2009.

A-list music artists just don't do that. You'd have to go back to Dire Straits in 1986 to find the last time an artist at the top of their game (they were touring Brothers in Arms) spent that long on tour Down Under. They were here for three months, but it was the end of the world tour and they just kept adding more shows to cope with demand.

Sure, the tours make Pink millions, and she earns every dollar, but they also plough millions back into our economy. She's known as a "hotel filler" in the hospitality industry as people travel from regional areas to see her in the city. Every venue she plays employs local staff, from selling merchandise and food to helping set up the show.

Pink could easily fill outdoor stadiums in Australia. She could bang out a national tour in two or three weeks, just like Ed Sheeran and Adele did.

However, she prefers to play arenas - more intimate for the fans, but more work for her as it means more shows. And more shows means more chance to get sick.

Ignore the fools playing doctors and nurses online: no professional singer postpones a show unless it's completely necessary. And while the saddos will stay online bashing out bitterness to a handful of followers, any day now Pink will back in full flight (quite literally) for her night job and making tens of thousands of people happy.

Cameron Adams is a News Corp national music writer.