Finding funny in mental health issues
Nathan Hedley’s Searching for Happiness is a comedy show mixed with a Ted X talk which explores his battle with mental health.
He’ll be on stage next week at the Comedy Hub in the Palmy Fringe Festival PFF.
Nathan says he does comedy to make people laugh. He was nominated for Emerging Talent at the Nelson Fringe Festival this year.
“Comedy has helped me through tough times. I watched stand-up as a teenager and it helped me through the grieving process after my brother died.”
Nathan’s one-man show is how he feels about the mental health system through his experiences of talking to helplines and counsellors and going to see doctors. He says comedy has helped him through the bleak times and has been a massive help with his mental health.
Searching for Happiness isa rollercoaster of a ride, he says.
“If you want to see a show that will bring tears of happiness and joy along with sadness then this is the show for you.
“It’s given me a place to talk about it in a light comical way where I make light of a bad situation or I make light of how I feel about the mental health system.”
He says that stand-up comedy is a great community, “like one big family that has given me the support I needed”.
“I also think my show has touched a lot of people, as well as raised awareness about mental health.”
Nathan says he meets a lot of people who have been affected by mental health or who work in the mental health field.
“They tell me they loved the show or loved parts of it. Some have even said it was spot on and I’ve also made good friends with these people.
“I’ve had the privilege to work alongside a charity called Daisy Chain and I want to do more work for charities in the near future.”
He’s been doing stand-up for three years and is inspired by comedian Justin White and other international acts like Gabriel Iglesias and Chris Gerhard.
■ The Royal, 44 Rangitikei St, October 8, 8.15pm; October 9, 7pm.
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