Stand-up comedian Vir Das has been preparing for the last two days to do the opposite of what he usually does — engage in a serious talk. The talk organised by the Asia Society India Centre is on the topic of comedy and it’s relevance in today’s times. Das assures us that while the topic is important, he intends to add some fun in it.
“What I really want is that after the session when people leave the room, they say wow I had no idea that humour can play such a important role in our lives,” says Das as he begins to explain what this talk is really about. In the interactive session that will be held today, he will be looking at not just the relevance but also the importance of comedy in today’s times. “Humour is important and in most people’s life, comedy exists. But, I do feel that there are things people can do to ensure that humour is an integral part of their lives,” says Das.
His talk will also include a series of recommendations — books one can read and places one can visit where they can find humour. “I also recommend people should go to stand-up acts, especially mine,” he adds, breaking into a laugh. Another aspect of humour that he will be talking about is the censorship on humour prevalent today.
“Humour is the most censored form of art. Earlier, at least, forums like Facebook and Twitter were available where people could freely use humour, but now even those are being censored. I wanted to come out against this kind of censorship,” he reveals.
On whether it was difficult to prepare for this particular talk, he admits, “The temptation to not write jokes was a bit tough to resist. Also, the last time I gave a lecture was when I was an assistant teacher in a drama school. That was when dinosaurs still roamed the planet, freely,” he adds, jokingly. But, he feels that this is a chance to say something poignant. “Many times, people have the tendency to not take stand-up comedians seriously. Even while making jokes, we are conveying something,” he says, adding, “But then, I have made a career out of not taking myself too seriously and I will ensure the talk has elements of fun.”