Just before 3pm yesterday, comedian Al Porter posted a lengthy statement on his website, which quickly went viral.
partly from several comments in 2019 after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) dropped their investigation into the sexual assault allegations, this is the first time he has broken his silence and goes into detail about his life over the past 5 years.
The comedian spoke about being “sober for a long time”, how he is living a quiet life in his parents’ house in Tallaght and hopes to be able to revive his comedy career mine.
It was immediately clear that this was a very different Al Porter from the one who reached dizzying heights in the Irish media world before it all fell apart in a few short days in November 2017.
Back then, he seemed to have the world at his feet after landing on the main lunchtime slot with Today FM while also starting Dating Anonymous on TV3, now Virgin Media TV.
He was performing on sold-out shows in Ireland, making regular television appearances on BBC comedy programmes, and it wasn’t long before he disappeared from public life, thanks to his starring role in the soap opera. Christmas pantomime that he co-wrote.
The star, whose real name is Alan Kavanagh, is a sociable, open person and always appears to be 24 years older thanks to his extremely confident appearance.
He spent a short time at Trinity College Dublin after receiving a 580 in his Leaving Cert, but dropped out after a few months when he decided “the academy is not for me”.
He once considered Graham Norton to be his ultimate comedy hero, but in an interview boasted that he was “further further down the career path than Graham at 24”.
And he was right – very few stars managed to hit prime time slots on both TV and radio in their early 20s while still performing live shows.
He did it all while continuing to live at home in Springfield in Tallaght with his parents Marian and Mick.
Once a newspaper columnist, he is a media buff and can be trusted to deliver colorful quotes and reveal insights into his world.
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His downfall was amazingly quick after a series of tweets published in November 2017 alleging inappropriate behavior destroyed his career in just a few days.
It wasn’t until two years later that the DPP announced that it would stop investigating a sexual assault case in Dublin, which allegedly happened in late 2016, and effectively cleared his name.
He made a brief statement outside court at the time but made no attempt to return to public life.
In his statement on his website yesterday, he said he “wouldn’t wish those two years on anyone” and that his life had “changed beyond recognition”.
“I have a quiet life these days, very different from the future I ever imagined,” he said.
“Back then, I was a 24-year-old comedian with an exciting road ahead of me, doing what I loved.
“As I write this, I am on the kitchen table of my parents’ house, where I live, in Tallaght.
“I’m fit and healthy and a long time sober.”
He said that when charges were brought against him: “In a period of 48 hours, I felt like I lost everything.
“Through an article, I learned that a complaint about my sexual assault was sent to the gardener. I immediately and repeatedly contacted the doctor, but it was not until a year later that I was told what the real accusation was, which I denied.
“It was another year before the Director of Public Prosecutions withdrew the charges against me. I wouldn’t wish those two years on anyone.”
He said during that time he received death threats and read mocking headlines saying he died by suicide.
Porter said the controversy started with people tweeting about him and some of them from the comedy scene and he considers them “good friends”.
“These are the people I admire. I was 19 years old when we all met, and they were older comics.
“They said publicly that I was not suitable for them back then, some said they laughed at the time, but they felt uncomfortable,” he said.
“I miss the different events and we stayed in touch for many years, texting online and working and socializing in person.
“Even though I started getting higher bills and some bigger gigs, I was never in a position of power over anyone, despite what some people may have written. “
‘I’ve let down the people I’ve worked with. And I let down the people who came to see my show’
He reflected on his life during five years of going unnoticed and said he was “extremely immature” between the ages of 19 and 24.
“In my personal life, I can be a mess, oblivious to the times I am obnoxious. I didn’t care enough about others because I was too busy thinking the world revolved around me,” he said.
“Don’t take it too seriously, I’m an idiot. I have let my family and friends down.
“I let my partner down, who has been by my side all this time and got through all of this. I let my community down, Tallaght, the comedy scene and the LGBTQ+ community.
“I have let down the people I have worked with. And I let down the people who came to see my show and always supported me,” he said.
Regarding his decision to step back from the limelight, he said that he “takes these issues very seriously in my personal life”.
“I decided to let go of all my work commitments because I couldn’t keep working and deal with everything else.
“Since the age of 19, my life has been a running train, I have lit candles at both ends, overwhelming me and unable to cope,” he said.
He spoke of receiving a “big wake-up call” from what happened over the years.
“I paid a heavy price and learned my lessons the hard way and in the most public way imaginable,” he said.
“As someone who has made his life to make people laugh, I also know that I can’t make everyone happy but, as they say, failure can lead to trouble, we have to get out. sea. I would rather fail in my own terms than row someone else’s boat.”
He said that over the years he has had countless offers to return to the stage but he is “just not ready”.
He is looking forward to brighter days and wants to “make people laugh again”.
But what does the future hold for Porter and can he revive his once brilliant media career?
Will he be able to rebuild and move on from everything that happened?
An industry veteran says he is “absolutely doable” and he is determined to get back on stage again and perform for a live audience again, with the UK being another possibility. special for him.
Not long before the controversy erupted, Porter signed a deal for a four-part comedy autobiographical series with BBC Radio 4 in a massive star-studded coup.
That same year, he performed a sold-out show at the Soho Theater in London while his hit show Al Porter at Large was nominated for Best Show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival.
He has also followed appearances on BBC’s Live in Apollo and Michael McIntyre’s Big show.
Looking across the water with fresh pastures and a new UK audience could be one of the serious possibilities for the comedian and he could even come back “bigger than ever”.
“He’s very sober and has done a lot on his own,” the industry veteran added.
“If he tries and doesn’t succeed, he is strong enough to move on. But it will be on his own terms, not anyone else’s.
“It’s not easy when you have such a great fall but he has a huge talent and he can totally get his career back.
“He’s had a lot of gigs in the past, but he’s not ready yet. Now he is.”
Clearly feeling optimistic about the future, Porter ended his statement by saying Oscar Wilde: “Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future. Mine starts now. “
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/al-porter-five-years-after-his-glittering-career-fell-apart-comedian-could-look-to-the-uk-to-make-a-comeback-41838648.html Al Porter: Five years after his glittering career fell apart, the comedian could look to the UK for a comeback