Wednesday 26 November 2014

Actor Stephen Fry in pledge of support for Irish mental health arts festival

Published 08/01/2014 | 07:40

Stephen Fry plays The Master of Laketown in The Hobbit
Stephen Fry has weighed in on Ireland's mental health debate.

ACTOR Stephen Fry – who admitted to attempting suicide – has weighed in on Ireland's mental health debate.

The comedian and writer revealed last year in an interview: “I have a condition which requires me to take medication so that I don't get either too hyper or too depressed to the point of suicide.”

He then stated that he “attempted it [suicide] last year.” Since then Fry has become an activist championing mental health.

He called out to his 6.5 million Twitter followers to “show support for Ireland's @firstfortnight mental health arts fest,” adding: “Let's break the stigma.”

The arts festival that kicked off in the New Year made its name releasing “happy clouds” in the city. Its objective is to challenge mental health prejudice through creative arts.

JP Swaine from the festival told the Herald that “we were delighted that Stephen Fry tweeted in support of First Fortnight yesterday”. He said Fry had been invited to attend in 2011 and 2013 but “schedule clashes made it unworkable”.

So instead organisers asked Fry if he would tweet in support of the festival and he duly obliged. Although the star has no Irish ancestry he does have a fondness for the emerald isle and learned Irish for a cameo role in TG4's Ros na Run.

hnews@herald.ie

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