Sheridan Smith compared herself to a “broken sparrow” as she spoke candidly about her mental health issues.
The actress hit the headlines when she pulled out of a number of shows for West End musical Funny Girl, later saying she “just couldn’t continue - I lost my mind”.
Smith, 37, revealed she has been diagnosed as bipolar and in an interview with The Daily Telegraph’s Review magazine told how her father’s terminal cancer diagnosis triggered a downward spiral.
She said: “That was the catalyst and suddenly I was having a proper meltdown. I’m upset that my dad had to see that. But at least I got myself better to be with him for his last days.”
Smith said she nearly quit performing after her father, Colin, died aged 80 in November 2016.
In March of that year Smith missed several performances of Funny Girl, in which she was the lead.
She said: “I managed to keep it going for a long time but the wheels were coming off and when I crashed it was a big bang.”
Smith admitted to “self-medicating” and said she was “in a really bad way”, adding: “That wild girl stuff is drink-fuelled bravado and actually, when I’m on my own, I’m like a little broken sparrow wanting to be put back together.”
Smith is now engaged to insurance broker Jamie Horn, whom she met on dating app Tinder.
She has release an album titled A Northern Soul. Smith said writing the record was “really cathartic”.
A Northern Soul is out now.