Who was Will Young's twin brother Rupert?

The singer's brother struggled with alcoholism

Will Young is one of the most recognisable faces in British pop, known for winning ITV's Pop Idol before rising to stardom with numerous number one albums and hit singles. 

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But while the singer was finding fame in the noughties, behind the scenes he was trying to care for his twin brother, Rupert, who suffered a long battle with alcoholism and sadly died by suicide in July 2020. Channel 4's new documentary, Will Young: Losing My Twin Rupert, sees Will and his parents tell Rupert's story. 

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Who was Will Young's brother Rupert?

Will Young's brother was Rupert Maxwell Young, who was born just ten minutes after his twin on 20 January 1979. 

Rupert died by suicide at the age of 41 following a long battle with depression and addiction to alcohol and pain killers. According to Will, his brother "struggled with alcohol probably from the age of about 18 through to July 2020," when he died. 

Chatting candidly about his struggles during an interview in 2008, Rupert reflected on one particular moment when he was watching his brother perform on morning television while he had spent the previous night drinking and self-harming. 

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"It seemed bizarre to me that two people who are genetically the same could behave in such different ways," he said. 

"I realised that something had gone very wrong. But I didn't know what, or why, and nor did anyone else."


A post shared by Will Young (@willyoungofficial)

Rupert died in 2020

What happened to Rupert Young?

Rupert died after falling from Westminster Bridge in July 2020. He had lived with Will for four years from 2016 until his death. 

Shortly before his brother passed, Will reported him as a trespasser at his London home. Opening up about Rupert's final weeks, he said: "At the end, he would be drinking 24 hours a day.

Will and his parents tell Rupert's story in Channel 4's new documentary

"You've got this monster who's not moving. So, the only thing was to throw him out but also to be aware he might end up killing himself. I was ok with everything I’d done to try to help him."

Will Young: Losing my Twin Rupert airs on Channel 4 at 10:05pm on Tuesday 10 May.

For emotional support you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, email jo@samaritans.org, visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.

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