Pryor's voice silenced

Illness robs him of speech

Multiple sclerosis has finally robbed Richard Pryor of his voice.

The comic has not been able to perform for the past eight years, since appearing in the movie Lost Highway.

The 64-year-old has long conducted all his interviews by emails because of his illness, which was diagnosed in 1986.

Now his wife Jennifer has revealed in an American TV interview that he can no longer speak

She also said that the infamous 1981 incident when he set fire to himself, previously thought to be an accident while freebasing cocaine, was a suicide bid.

Jennifer said: “No, no, it was not an accident. I think Richard wanted to take his life.”

Published: 31 Dec 2004

Today's comedy-on demand picks


The charity fundraiser, usually held at the Comedy Store, launches an online version, with Mick Ferry as host.

The bill comprises fellow circuit favourites  Eleanor Tiernan, Laura Lexx, Nathan Caton, Rob Deering and  Russell Kane, plus Paul Sinha, and Vicar Of Dibley writer Paul Mayhew-Archer, both of whom have the condition.

Click for more suggestions
... including the Good Ship comedy club and the return of Radio Wales panel show The Leak.

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