News

'Comedians are the saddest people'

FILE PHOTO LIANHE WANBAO

Looking at Irene Ang's successful career, it is hard to imagine that she had tried killing herself three times in the past.

The 45-year-old, whose long list of occupations includes being the CEO of talent agency FLY Entertainment, said: "I attempted suicide and I failed.

"On my last attempt, I had a revelation: 'If I have the courage to attempt suicide, then why shouldn't I have the courage to live to fight another day?'

"From then on, whenever I run into difficult times, I refuse to give up."

Ang's dark days were in the 1990s, before she landed her iconic and successful role as Rosie Phua in the popular sitcom Phua Chu Kang Pte Ltd.

She agreed that being a comedian is tough, as people expect her to be happy all the time.

"They often say comedians are the saddest people in the world, because everyone wants you to make them laugh," she said.

"People on the street talk to me like they've known me for very long. There is no barrier. It's nice but sometimes, I just want to be left alone. It can be very tiring."

Over the years, Ang has found various ways to cope with her low points.

"I own a bar, so I drop by for a glass of wine to chill and unwind sometimes. It's also important to have a strong support group of close friends whom I can confide in and talk to," she added.

"Focus on solving problems one at a time instead of lumping them together. When you focus on the positive stuff, things start happening for you again."

Ang also believes in paying it forward, saying that she uploads only positive stuff onto her Instagram account @flyirene.

She said: "Many people message me privately and tell me that my positive messages were what they needed to hear.

"Now I constantly scour the Web for such quotes and post them so that I can continue to influence people positively."


HELPLINES:

Care Corner Counselling Centre

Hotline (Mandarin) : 1800-353-5800

Website: www.carecorner.org.sg

Samaritans of Singapore (SOS)

Hotline: 1800-221-4444

Website: www.sos.org.sg

Institute of Mental Health

Hotline: 6389 2222

Website: www.imh.com.sg