Sorabh Pant is one of four comedians who have made their way from India to grace the stages of the 2018 Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Walking on the path paved for him by people like Russell Peters, who brought Indian comedy to a mainstream audience, he brings with him a wicked sense of humour and an ability to laugh at others as well as himself.
It is clear that Pant has written jokes tailored to suit an Australian audience, opening the show with a cricketing joke with the obligatory references about sledging and ball tampering, which was met with much laughter. The audience demographic was half Indian and half Australian, so careful planning would have been required to design a show that catered to everyone.
Following an initial disclaimer warning of a lack of political correctness, politics, religion and other taboo topics featured prominently throughout the hour. The intent is clear though – the idea is not to complain or poke fun at people, rather to call people out on their stupidity and highlight how we often accept ridiculous notion as mainstream. Equally prominent were stories and jokes about Pant’s family, his wife and two children who provided him with a lot of material to generate laughs.
Pant is leading the way in of a breed of Indian stand up comedians. In a country where professions like doctors, accountants and engineers are the only ones considered acceptable, it is refreshing to see people like Pant, going against the grain, following his dreams, and making them a success.
Moni is of Indian heritage, was born in England and has grown up in Australia. As a result, she appreciates all things fusion.