Ever since Michael Angelakos wrote the first batch of eventual Passion Pit songs as a belated Valentine’s Day gift to a soon-to-be ex-girlfriend, lyrics to his band’s bouncy electro-pop songs have been darkly confessional. Now, the songwriter is opening up in a different way, starring in a new campaign to help those struggling with Bipolar Disorder.
Angelakos discusses his own struggles with the mental illness in a new PSA from Bring Change 2 Mind, a non-profit established by Glenn Close. Titled #StrongerThanStigma, the campaign also features actor Wayne Brady and pro athletes Brandon Marshall and Ben Scrivens.
“Once I started accepting my mental condition, it stung for a little bit, and then everything improved,” Angelakos says in the clip. “When people ask me what it’s like to live with bipolar, you just have to adjust and figure out exactly how you’re going to live your life the way you want to live it and achieve what you want to achieve. But you can only do that once you get help.”
Back in 2012, Passion Pit cancelled several tour dates after the release of sophomore album Gossamer so Angelakos could get treatment. “After years of hospitalizations and medications, Michael had publicly acknowledged that he lives with Bipolar Disorder,” reads the PSA’s YouTube description. “The support that Michael received in response to his honesty and transparency inspired him to use his publicity to humanize the concept of mental illness and to advocate that it is treated as any other health concern.”
Passion Pit’s third album is expected sometime later this year. Watch Angelakos’ #StrongerThanStigma PSA below.