Spoken word artist Priscila Hernandez talks to us about why she is passionate about supporting a movement for good mental health for all.
Tell us why you are supporting MHF Live.
Supporting the movement for good mental health is important to me. Raising awareness means bringing to light the normality of mental health issues, and finding ways to resolve them collectively.
The more spaces available to open up conversations, the more likely we are to break the stigma in our communities. In doing so, there will be endless opportunities for individuals to heal, educate each other and share stories.
In aligning mental health with music and creativity, MHF live is creating a platform that gives space to the real, raw, authenticity of mental health and creating change that is invaluable.
What’s your earliest musical memory?
I remember watching the animated movie Yellow Submarine at a young age. I didn’t know much about The Beatles then but I recall being fascinated by the range of colours and sounds omitting from the TV screen. I’m sure I’ve watched this more than once.
What does music do for your mental health?
Music provides me an opportunity to feel. Every emotion that wants to be delved into by my mind is explored in sounds. Sometimes these sounds are outside of words and just have to be listened to, heard. This helps with healing. Instead of running away from pain, music places you in a position of confrontation. The overcoming part is beautiful.
Who is the musician who has most inspired you?
Lila Downs. Her contribution to the soundtrack of the movie Frida Kahlo is magnificent. Both in sound and expression. I admire her exploration of pain, culture, and indigenous roots in her music.
What makes you happy?
Moments of serendipity.
Also, dancing in my room with my headphones on, with the belief that I am the best dancer in the world.
What’s the best sound in the world? And the worst?
The best sound, birds chirping. The worst sound, a baby crying.
What song is in your head just now?
Mozart, Fur Elise.
Please tell us about (and share) a piece of music that has had an impact on your mental health?
Tupac Shakur – Keep your head up.
“please don’t cry, dry your eyes, never let up,
forgive but don’t forget, girl keep your head up”
I use to listen to this on repeat when I was younger. Sometimes if I need a few words of encouragement I still do.
Watch: Priscila perform powerful poem Body Image, a collaboration with the Mental Health Foundation for Mental Health Awareness Week.
Priscila will perform live at OMEARA London on Thursday 18th July as part of the Mental Health Foundation’s 70th birthday celebrations. Get your tickets here.
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