Monday, 8 May 2017

Of course! For them humour is kind of serious business: Interaction with Aravind SA and Sorabh Pant

Think of a situation where you get a chance to interact with two of the top stand-up comedians of this age. That should be the funniest hour of your life right? Laughing out through intestines and all. I too had a chance to encounter and interact with India's two of the most popular stand-up comedians, Sorabh Pant and Aravind-SA rightly a year back. The duo shared their experiences, efforts and of course lots of humour. Here are some excerpts from the interview.

Q. Aravind, you seem to have a lot of attachment toward the local of any town across the world you perform. Where ever you perform you just start up with a joke relating to that location. So, what actually is the strategy behind that?

Yes, it is very important for a stand up comedian to have go rapport with his audience for which the best way is to attract them with their hometown. So, I do work a lot in the pre-show phase for this to happen where I just do a little research about the city and the people over there.

Q. But Sorabh, you have a style which is completely opposite to SA's where you just rag everyone in the auditorium and the best part is that people love that. So, what is the secret behind this?

That's no secret man!. Even that is also one method to bridge the gap between the performer and the rest. But, it has also got me into a worst ever situation where I just cracked a joke about a body-builder a couple of months back in Chandigarh, who walked past the dias. I was about to complete the joke and at that time he just turned towards me started walking towards me raising his sleeves as if gonna hit me. Thank almighty, I somehow managed to escape with a sudden twist in the joke.(he laughs out loud)

Q. Actually that is the next question is all about. Both you guys seem to have loads and loads of spontaneity during your performances. From which shop do you buy that? Or is that a boon by birth?

SA: Actually I am not as spontaneous as Sorabh is. He has instantaneous spontaneity whereas I can show-off only prepared spontaneity. But, I involve the audience in my jokes and as said earlier cracking about the city makes me look spontaneous.

Sorabh: I was not this spontaneous during my initial stages as you see me now. To be frank I was doing all sorts of mistakes in a single stage a normal stand-up comedian does in about 20 years of performance. But, as years rolled on somehow the spontaneity quotient just boosted up in me.

Q. Hey Aravind, in the recent days you seem to crack a lot about North Indians vs Madarsis. Is there any personal agenda behind that?

SA: I do not have any personal vengeance as you think. Even I crack such jokes when I perform in Delhi too. I just wanted them to have the same feel what South Indians get while watching some irrelevant and disgusting tributes like 'Lungi Dance'. (By this time, he had performed his first Chappathi dance show at NIT Trichy)

Q. Sorabh, what is your opinion about SA in this context? He says, things like 'Lungi Dance' is actually a disgusting tribute?

I second Aravind in this context. Actually even I do not like such tributes which are no way related to Tamils but, just tagged as 'For Tamils'. When you do something for others it actually should take them easy and should not just make them go pissed-off.

- Santhosh Mathevan
Chennai, May 8, 2017.

P.s. I had penned this interview for The New Indian Express in March 2016. So there could be some facts that would have expired as days rolled on

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