1. How and when did you choose comedy as a career?
How and when did you choose comedy as a career?
It didn’t happen by chance. I always had the desire to be a stage artist ever since I was in class 6. I used to participate in a lot of speech and debate competition in school and by the time I reached college, these monologues started turning into humor monologues and rants. It was in 2014 that I participated in a Delhi city standup competition, and I was in Top 10 without any prior experience. It all started from there, I started hitting open mics, going to gigs after work and started writing jokes.
As I got into doing more gigs, managing standup with work was getting increasingly difficult and that is when I decided to take up standup and entertainment as a dedicated career. Tough decision, but had to be taken.
2. What type of content do you enjoy producing the most and is the most challenging?
Stories about self is the most challenging, everyone has stories from their childhood, college, school, locality, office, trips to tell about but the point is to add relatable humor to it to make the story more interesting without losing out on the core of that anecdote.
3. Do you prefer digital as a medium or do you enjoy doing live gigs more and why?
Well, this is a fairly easy question. Digital Gigs are no match for live gigs. People in the room, their reactions of laughter, applause, sighs or even some heckle makes a different environment all together. The Energy is different in a live setup with different people coming together. I enjoy doing digital shows too, but I will choose a live gig any day over digital, if given an option.
4. People, who are interested in taking up stand-up comedy as a profession, do they need a funny bone or they can develop one?
Developing a funny bone is also possible. I have seen many successful comics who are otherwise dead serious people in real life. I believe everyone has humor, its only a matter of learning how to deliver it as you think and make it relatable to people.
5. How stable is being a stand-up comedian as a profession in India? And what is the future of this profession?
It was getting stable, but March 2022 changed everything. Before that we started seeing a lot of people coming for live shows, lots of companies, colleges and private settings adding stand-up as an entertainment option in their programs. It was going fairly well. Even youtube wa fetching us good revenues. Then China made a Bat-Decision and things fell apart. Unfortunately, we are always the first ones to close down, and the last ones to open up. We are not a recognized profession and we don’t have any support from the government, infact the entire Artist community has been ignored by governments for years, apart from the occasional award ceremonies.
When things opened up for a little time in between, we could see a great attendance in live shows, some corporates who started working from office started engaging with us. The signs were good and I hope in future, ones things are more settled in terms of the pandemic, stand-up will grow. It has already started being accepted as an entertainment option and its spread to Tier 2 and 3 cities gives a lot of encouragement. We will reach there, may take 5 years instead of 2, but we will.
6. What impact do you want to make in this world?
Well that is a tough one. These are many things which I think of that could be changed or improved. I personally would like to give people motivation, that Age, Status, Situation are no barriers for you to follow your passion. The only thing that can stop you is You, and the only one who can make you successful is You.
7. Which is your favourite book and why?
I am not a book reader at all. After Chacha Chowdhry I haven’t read anything. However I have a few favorite movies. 1 Is Castaway, the grit and determination to survive shown by the protagonist, moves me a lot. Another one is Dhoni-The Untold Story – The story of MSD inspired me to quit my job and give myself one good year to try and follow my passion. Many more, but these are the 2 favourites