Interview by Charlotte WoodsÂ
Rory Bremner, renowned political satirist, talks about Kingâ€™s and his mental health.
Rory Bremner, alumnus and Fellow of Kingâ€™s College London, is a successful satirist, playwright and comedian, known best for his impressions of politicians on television.
But behind the comic persona is a man living with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
He has openly discussed the condition in interviews and even presented a BBC Radio 4 show about coping with it.
Restlessness and impulsivity
Bremner says he wasnâ€™t even aware that he had the condition when he was at Kingâ€™s: â€œI was just doing too many things at once, as usual – plays, lectures, stand-up comedy on the London pub circuit – way too much.â€
â€œAnd probably talking too much in seminars. Whenever I see contemporaries from Kingâ€™s days, I feel the urge to apologise!â€Â Now he recognises that a lot of his characteristics, such as restlessness and impulsivity, â€œare pretty textbook ADHD stuff.â€
â€œSomeone recently said it was like watching six TV screens, all showing different things, and flicking your eyes between them. But every now and again they all show the same thing, and then youâ€™re really focused.â€
Bremner has an ambivalent relationship with his condition, saying, â€œI sort of look at ADHD as my greatest friend and my worst enemy.â€Â But ADHD can be helpful for a comic performer, as you have to think on your feet: â€œIt keeps me interested (in too much) and makes connections which are useful for a comedian.â€
â€œOn the other hand, I hate the scrapes it gets me into when Iâ€™ve taken on too much, or forgotten something, or yet again failed to be organised.â€