Comedy in India is evolving: Jeeveshu Ahluwalia
Comedian Jeeveshu Ahluwalia hails from the capital and chucked a lucrative job to make a mark as a comedian. He recounts his journey, his style of comedy and his views on Indian comedy
Jeeveshu Ahluwalia is one of Delhi's rising comedians. He left his well-earning job for the love of humour. His comedy style takes the form of observational and rambling whimsical monologue and self-referential pantomime. He is currently a regular at comedy venues across the country. Ahluwalia is going to perform in a comedy caper along with Daniel Fernandes and Aditi Mittal in the city today. The funny guy talks seriously about his comedy and humour in the country, ahead of his performance in the city. Excerpts from an interview:
Comedian Jeeveshu Ahluwalia
Q. How did you enter the comedy scene?
A. I used to have a proper job in a good firm for the last 16 years. Apart from that routine, my weekends were more happening. I used to spend them in pubs and bars with my friends where I used to perform for them. It was, of course, for free and just for fun. But lately I realised that the funny guy in me wanted something different. So, I quit my job last year in March and ventured into full time professional stand-up comedy in Delhi. I was an amateur in the field but the comedy circle in Delhi picked me up and since then, I have been doing shows across the country.
Q. Describe your style of humour.
A. My comedy is mostly from my observations and own experiences. For example, my mother wants me to register on a matrimonial site that I call as barbaadi.com. I like clean and family-oriented comedy as it has a wider reach and acceptance. I also like to observe things happening around me and comment on them in a humorous way in my shows.
Q. Do you think India's comedy scene is evolving? When will it go beyond targeting physical aspects of people?
A. The comedy scene is evolving lately. There are the same routine things that are talked about every time but it will change eventually. Also, people don't object to a joke on their physical attributes like being fat if the comedian himself is so. But yes, we need to go beyond that. Apart from gags on women, marriages and sexuality, slowly, with increasing number of comedy shows and exposure; new concepts are being brought in and are being liked by people too.
Q. What is your take on comedy in Indian movies?
A. I love the class acts by Hrishikesh Mukherjee and even the fantastic timing in David Dhawan movies in the 90s. Apart from that, we have been only been aping and making spoofs out of Hollywood movies. But Hollywood has a great range of actors to carry the scripts on their shoulders. While in India, a fantastically scripted comedy like Ankhon Dekhi with an amazing line-up of actors fails commercially, which is very discouraging for the ones who want to make serious comedy.
On May 7, 9 pm onwards
At High Spirits, Mundhwa.
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