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Fantasia also kept a secret few people knew—she was battling a serious health issue. Fantasia says she noticed something was wrong near the end of The Color Purple. She had to take IV fluids between performances for dehydration and always felt tired. 

Fantasia finally saw a doctor after the curtain closed on her Broadway run. Two benign tumors were discovered on her vocal chords. "He told me, 'We've got to take these off, and it might be a chance where you might not be able to sing like you used to,'" she says.

The surgery was a success. "I couldn't work or sing for six weeks," she says. "But I'm good as gold now."

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