Irish comic Jarlath Regan who donated kidney to save brother uses experience for Edinburgh Fringe show

Irish comic Jarlath Regan who donated kidney to save brother uses experience for Edinburgh Fringe show

AN IRISH comedian who donated a kidney to save his sick brother is hoping to offer audiences a sidesplitting experience at this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Funnyman Jarlath Regan and his brother have both made full recoveries and the Irish comic has now used the experience as material for his latest one-man show, playfully titled Organ Freeman.

His brother’s life expectancy would have been less than five years before the transplant earlier this year, but that has now changed thanks to the altruistic act.

Regan said he set out to create a show which gets people talking about organ donation, while trying to be funny at the same time.

"I guess I made it clear to my brother at the very start that I was going to try and raise as much awareness about this as possible because my life is my stand-up and when this came into my life I knew this would be stand-up," said Regan.

"My brother was so happy that he was going to get a kidney of the quality of mine," he added with a heavy dollop of humility.

Regan, who also presents the award winning An Irishman Abroad podcast, has said the most rewarding part is being able to highlight the issue of organ donation, saying the experience has given him a new perspective on life, while also making him a physically healthier person too.

"I'd say it definitely gives you a new perspective," he said. "One fact that people don't know about organ donation is that live donors tend to live longer, they have a longer life expectancy.

"People don't know that, they think they are somehow doing damage to themselves, they're going to lessen the quality of their life, when in fact actually the opposite is true – and on average they tend to live longer.

"I'm certainly a lot healthier and a lot more physically fit than I was.

"I was advised at the time to drop 10 kilos, and as a result of having to give the kidney I did that and I certainly am healthier.

"In terms of a broader perspective of life, it'd be hard not to have a greater appreciation of life at the end of this because of what you've been through.

"Because of the discussions you've had, the concept of mortality comes to the forefront of your mind, but again these are discussions you never expected to have."

For more details on Jarlath Regan's Organ Freeman show at the Edinburgh Fringe, click here