Tina Turner makes an emotional farewell to fans with Sky documentary amid health woes

The legendary singer, 81, battles PTSD, stroke, and cancer and wants to spend her final years out of the spotlight

Tina Turner speaks during the "Tina - The Tina Turner Musical" opening night at Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on November 07, 2019 in New York City
(Image credit: John Lamparski / Stringer Getty)

Tina Turner has revealed she is stepping out of the spotlight for good as she bids farewell to her fans in a new feature-length documentary that looks back at her life.

The film, titled Tina, will be aired on Sky this month, and features the legendary singer, 81, telling viewers how she wants to enter the third and final chapter of her life out of the spotlight.

Tina, who is now suffering from ill health, having previously had a stroke, cancer and, kidney failure which led to a transplant in 2017, looks back on camera for the first time at her younger years.

Tina recalled, “It wasn’t a good life. The good did not balance the bad. I had an abusive life, there’s no other way to tell the story. It’s a reality. It’s a truth. That’s what you’ve got, so you have to accept it."

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American music duo Tina Turner and Ike Turner (1931-2007) on left playing Fender Stratocaster guitar, of the Ike & Tina Turner Revue perform live on stage at the Hammersmith Odeon in London on 24th October 1975

(Image credit: David Redfern / Staff Getty)

Much of Tina's early life was filled with struggle and pain, before she went on to find true love with her second husband, Erwin Bach. And it looks at her global fame as a middle-aged woman. But it's revealed the star has a form of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from the domestic abuse she suffered at the hands of her first husband and music partner, Ike Turner.

Tina continued, "Some people say the life that I lived and the performances that I gave, the appreciation, is blasting with the people. And yeah, I should be proud of that. I am.

“But when do you stop being proud? I mean, when do you, how do you bow out slowly? Just go away?”

The couple can be seen making a farewell trip to the US for the Broadway premiere of her stage show, The Tina Turner Story, and Erwin, 65, reveals on camera, “She said, ‘I’m going to America to say goodbye to my American fans and I’ll wrap it up’. And I think this documentary and the play, this is it — it’s a closure.”

Erwin Bach and Tina Turner arrive at the press night performance of "Tina: The Tina Turner Musical" at the Aldwych Theatre on April 17, 2018 in London, England

(Image credit: David M. Benett / Contributor Getty)

How old is Tina Turner now?

Tina was born Anna Mae Bullock on 26th November 1939. Her childhood was filled with poverty and misery, picking cotton in the fields around Nutbush, Tennessee.

The documentary is expected to have been painful to make but is a parting gift to her global army of fans. Tina, now aged 81, is bringing the curtain down on a career that has seen her sell more than 100 million records, and at her peak, in the 80s she sold out arenas around the world.

Her mother, Zelma, suffered domestic abuse at the hands of her father, Floyd Bullock before they both abandoned her as a child. But when Tina reunited with her mother when she was a superstar, she described her as being cold and unloving.

Speaking in the documentary, Tina said, “Mom was not kind. When I became a star, of course back then she was happy because I bought her a house. I did all kinds of things for her, she was my mother.

“She didn’t want me, she didn’t want to be around me, even though she wanted my success. But I did for her as if she loved me.”

Selina Maycock

Selina is a Senior Entertainment Writer with more than 15 years of experience in newspapers and magazines. She has covered all things Entertainment for GoodtoKnow, Woman&Home and My Imperfect Life. Before joining Future Publishing, Selina graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2006 with a degree in Journalism. She is fully NCTJ and NCE qualified and has 100wpm shorthand.