From storming the Edinburgh Festival Fringe to selling out and extending a Soho Theatre run twice before, actor, writer, and comedian Rich Hardisty will be taking his hilarious yet touching show Silly Boy, out on the road for his debut national tour this spring.
Through captivating tales and a magnetic performance, Rich shares the highs and lows of his eventful and peculiar life, revealing how his mental illnesses affect him. Silly Boy explores themes such as anorexia, bipolar disorder, self-harm, borderline personality disorder and heroin abuse. But as dark as the subjects may be, the show is not heavy, more a celebration of the beauty and silliness of it all.
Dr Mark Salter, Consultant in Adult General Psychiatry (who has appeared on Big Brother, Stephen Fry’s Bipolar Documentary, ITV and the BBC) said “it was the most accurate portrayal of mental illness and bipolar disorder etc he has ever seen”
An anonymous benefactor was so moved by the show he is sending Rich on this tour as he feels it needs to be seen by as many people as possible.
In a weird turning of the tables, two psychotherapists messaged him after seeing the show to say that they learned more from his show than any academic paper or textbook they have read as they got to feel what it feels like. This in turn got him invited to perform at the Psychologist Research institute in Bristol and to the NHS Conference.
Rich’s journey has been far from conventional. He left school in Yorkshire with no GCSEs and worked as a binman and a cleaner, a stand-up comedian, and even became an internet entrepreneur, raising (and losing) a million dollars for his empathy-based internet start-up, which saw him partner with Stephen Fry. He developed 2 sitcoms with Channel 4, including The Art of Foley and can be seen in Lovesick and Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them.