A comedy career born from the idea of rebellion is how Vir Das, now one of India’s most success comedy exports, has climbed the global comedy ladder.
Vir will be debuting his funny, storytelling comedy in Australia this May as a part of the Sydney Comedy Festival.
The prospect of performing in Australia is one that Vir is incredibly excited about. “I’ve played to an Australian audience once before at the Australia Club in Singapore and I have to say Australians are the only people in the world that match Indians in volume. No one else can quite match it but Australians, so that'll be nice.
“My goal is to be a global comedian. I want to be able to go anywhere in the world and make people laugh. The US, the UK and Australia are the three holy grails for comedy so I'm excited about performing [in Australia].”
“Just For Laughs is the world’s biggest, unfocused comedy orgy."
Vir’s comedy style is influenced by the many cultures he has experienced. “I will include some; you know I am going to 29 countries on this world tour so I don't know how much of it I will include.
"I've learnt it's always good to included five, seven minutes of jokes related to the country you're in. I'm lucky I have good Australian comedian [supporting me on tour] so I'll definitely be asking them things.”
As well as being a comedian, Vir is also a Bollywood star. “I have a theatrical element to all my shows. Adding an extra narrative on top of 1.5 hours of jokes is really appreciated by Indian audiences. For this show the theme is a journey and a boarding pass. It's about abandoning everything and going back to nothing,” he says.
“I'm now in my 30s, so my show is about this new chapter; it's about moving from your 20s to your 30s, getting married, Indian history and lot of personal stories.”
Vir has already enjoyed global success and he humbly talks about his experiences at Soho Theatre in London and Montreal’s Just For Laughs. “Just For Laughs is the world’s biggest, unfocused comedy orgy. Everyone is having a great time but no one is having a better time than someone else, like an orgy.
“Soho is like a vortex of very cool comedy. It's comedy that is current and of the now, it's just off Oxford Street which is great. The ten nights I did there where incredibly cool.”
Ahead of his Australian tour, Vir shares what he hopes Australians take away from his stage show. “First I have an Indian accent which is always funny. People aren't really used to an Indian guy talking to them for the whole show in this accent. Although once they get used to it they enjoy the jokes.
“My style is to tell stories so there are a lot of personal stories about me growing up in Africa, Indian, my time in the US and a lot of other things. I'm a storyteller who cracks jokes; I hope people will enjoy it and just have a great time.”
Vir Das Shows
18-21 May - Factory Theatre (Sydney Comedy Festival)25-27 May - The Comic's Lounge (Melbourne)