Kaneez Surka on stand-up, multiculturalism and political humour

I found that difficult to cope with. They don’t like it. I want to become a really good comedy writer. 2018-05-13T07:18:42+05:30″>
Published: May 13, 2018 7:18:42 am

Kaneez Surka wants to develop her own web series. It’s definitely something that I will continue doing. You perform with different kinds of people. But I have an accent that definitely throws people off here. A lot of people expect to see Whose Line Is It Anyway, but it’s not like that at all. Also, people can be quite sensitive and I know a lot of my friends who are really good at topical and political humour but refuse to say anything because they are scared of the bite. “Oh, she is an accent waali,” they would say. It brings out different sides of you. You grew up in South Africa, you are a Gujarati and you now reside in Mumbai. If you want to do improv, it’s something you can learn if you work hard at it but for me, it was always a part of my personality. I realised then that I had a knack for comedy so when I came to India in 2005, I was drawn to comedy groups. The format is different. The next step is collaborating with everybody. It was something I had to work on and develop. Or is it something that you’ve had to work hard on? People think it’s fake. I joined an improv group and then I got signed for a television show called The Week That Wasn’t. The Improvisers. What’s the next step? I also want to work on a web series. I am going to keep collaborating with as many artistes as I can. Political humour is not my jam. In high school, I had taken up theatre and I was also working on dramas around the same time. But the immediate step is working on my own game show. We came up with a format that is very different to anything that you might have seen. I can do my own show whenever or however I want to do it. I spent a lot of years ‘denouncing’ my identity, hiding the fact that I was from South Africa so that I could become more relatable, but now I am thinking of embracing it fully so that I can use it in my comedy. What is your take on stand-up comedians and sketch artistes satirising and joking about politics and social issues? Has that experience helped you express professionally? Related News
Amazon to develop a TV series on Tom Hanks starrer A League of Their OwnFive ideas for Amazon’s Lord of the Rings prequel web seriesAmazon’s LOTR prequel to cost more than 500 million dollarsComedienne, actor and a full-time improviser Kaneez Surka recently joined forces with Kanan Gill, Abish Mathew and Kenny Sebastian for Amazon Prime Video Special called The Improvisers. I do anecdotal humour and I don’t do it because I am scared to do it but it’s just not something that I am naturally inclined towards. It’s fun. You don’t see the person, you just see the individual personalities do their bits. The goal is to get more female comedians out there so that people don’t see just our gender. It’s such a pity that we don’t have that kind of freedom to comment on the political nature of our country. Have you ever done it yourself? They think I am trying to act cool, that I am putting up an accent. It’s great to have that kind of background. One day when you are on a show and you see eight female comedians followed by five male comedians, the show becomes genderless. What’s that one big goal? What’s Something from Nothing all about? Since this show is all about improvisation, it would be interesting to know whether you had always been spontaneous. I did go to America to do courses and I did learn a lot, but I think improv was something that came naturally to me as opposed to stand-up which I had to work hard at. There is no stand-up whatsoever. For people to find me relatable, that has been an issue. Stream Now! Is it exclusively a series of sketches or does it also include stand-up? The General Fun Game Show is special because it has incorporated improv which I absolutely love doing, but I am not dependent on anyone else to perform it. We flew down someone from New York who does improv to help conceptualize the show and to also train us and workshop with us. They are scared of the hate and the threat of violence that we get and it’s not worth it. I am writing and developing a lot more right now, which is a new skill set for me. You will only exclusively see improv in the show. That’s a great mix of culture. @kaneezsurka @abishmathew @KananGill @knowkenny http://t.co/Yei1bYwRpm pic.twitter.com/GAUU1vK8uz
— Amazon PrimeVideo IN (@PrimeVideoIN) April 26, 2018
You’ve collaborated with nearly all the rising stars of stand-up and improv of India. In an exclusive chat with Indianexpress.com, Kaneez discusses sketches, stand-ups and political humour. When did you first realise that comedy and performing sketches is your calling? And I think for everyone in the group, the spontaneity is there which is what made us click in the first place. LIVE on @PrimeVideoIN. For all the latest Entertainment News, download Indian Express App
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