• Thursday, February 22, 2024


Biswa Kalyan Rath: ‘There is a thin line between honesty and oversharing’

By: Asjad Nazir

INDIAN comedian Biswa Kalyan Rath has been unstoppable ever since he came to prominence with the hit YouTube series, Pretentious Movie Reviews.

Although he has appeared on various streaming site shows in India, the talented stand-up comedian has perhaps been at his best when performing in front of a live audience.

After making his debut at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, Rath returns to Soho Theatre in central London with his latest offering, God Knows What This Show Is, which is powered by his trademark angry rant-styled delivery and unique world view.

Eastern Eye caught up with him for a quick catch-up about comedy and his London show, which runs from next Monday (18) to January 6.

How do you reflect on your comedy journey so far?

It’s been a tough road, but one of great learning. Every step has helped me refine my craft and get better at writing and delivering good content. I have made some great friends and relationships along the way and am now moving on to newer horizons.

What has been your most memorable comedy moment so far?

Working on developing and shooting my latest special, Mood Kharab, was both exciting and memorable. It involved jokes through storytelling and a projector and was shot at Soho theatre.

What was making your Edinburgh Fringe debut this year like for you?

It was just the challenge I was looking for – performing to a mixed audience and workshopping material that is universal. The entire run was quite a learning experience, and it’s definitely made me a more seasoned comedian.

How much are you looking forward to returning to Soho theatre, and what can we expect?

I am so glad to be returning to Soho theatre with a new show. It’s one of the best venues in the world to play. It’s a new show but it will be every bit a Biswa Kalyan Rath comedy show.

What inspired the interesting show title, God Knows What This Show Is?

(Laughs) God knows what inspired the title of this show – pun intended!

Does your fast-growing popularity put pressure on you?

It’s a part and parcel of doing what I do. The bigger challenge is to always stay true to my style and reinvent myself whenever necessary.

Do you get nervous before going on stage?

Performing to an audience that has bought tickets to come and see me is serious business. I simply trust my performance and have the confidence to give back multi-fold.

Do you ever feel that you’re revealing too much about yourself on stage?

There is a thin line between honesty and oversharing. And I am just being myself and ranting about things that unsettle me in everyday life.

Who is your own comedy hero?

Brian Regan. How he brings together simple observations in an authentic performance is spectacular, not to mention hilarious.

Where is the strangest place you have come up with a joke?

In my own mind.

What inspires you as a comedian?

I think that just being bad at everything except comedy inspires me to do comedy. Why should we all come to your show at Soho theatre? Because I am performing my show at the iconic Soho theatre. That should be reason enough, I think.

Biswa Kalyan Rath: God Knows What This Show Is runs from next Monday (18) until Saturday, January 6, at Soho Theatre, 21 Dean Street, London W1D 3NE. www.sohotheatre.com

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