The pop superstar was taken to a Big Apple hospital on 2 December (15) to receive treatment after she fell ill with a nasty bout of flu, and fans feared the health crisis would jeopardise her festive residency at the Beacon Theatre.

However, Mariah made a good recovery and proved she is fully fit by launching the Christmas shows as planned on Tuesday, kicking off the first of eight concerts with a rendition of classic carol Hark the Herald Angels Sing.

During the show, she told the audience, "Christmas is my favourite time of year; it's about love, peace, and joy!..."

The residency runs until 18 December (15).

Mariah performed Christmas shows at the same venue last year (14), but her opening night for that run was plagued by technical problems. She suffered issues with her earpiece and mic pack which left her floundering as she tried to keep in time with the music.