Aadar Malik, 29, him of the ‘Malik’ clan of Bollywood, and an integral part of Schitzengiggles Comedy talks to us about comedy, music and failure. Aadar is a theatre person since the age of 19, Bayside Journal asked him about what made him enter the world of comedy.
“At 22, I ended up being part of a play where I was playing a stand-up comedian. And I asked a few friends of mine from who were stand-up comedians at that time to give me some material. They insisted that I write my own material. So I tried my hand at it and realised that it is funnier when I write the material myself and perform it on stage. Slowly and steadily it started from one open mic to another open mic and suddenly the whole thing blew up,” says Aadar.
Theatre and comedy at once? Seems like a tough task. Aadar had decided to quit comedy after one last gig. His bar show was supposed to his final one. But there was something that brought him back to comedy and reignited the fire in his funny bones.
He tells us, “I had decided to quit as comedy was really not happening and theatre required a lot of hard work. And I couldn’t do stand-up comedy and do theatre at the same time without it being lucrative enough for me. I had decided that the bar show was going to be my last show and that’s when I met this idiot called Neville Shah. He told me about improvised comedy and invited me to see it. So when I met these guys, it was boom. I was part of SNG Comedy in the next three months itself.”
“I think three years ago when I started doing music with my comedy that’s when the big Eureka moment happened with me. Suddenly, I was more confident with the kind of material I want to talk about and what I would like to address with my jokes. The music kind of gave it a different kind of voice all together. That’s what really opened my eyes and made me belief that this is something that I can really do and enjoy. Music is a very integral part of my training as a performer.”
He tasted success in 2014 with ‘She called me Bhaiyya’ which became an overnight success. The song received almost 50,000 views in a day itself. He wrote that song at four in the morning and by six it was ready with a tune as well.
“‘She called me Bhaiyya’ essentially changed my entire understanding of what stand-up comedy could be. I realised that there are no rules; it’s a performing art. And you can sing, talk, sit on a chair or be standing up. You can even improvise on stage and that is what is wonderful about stand-up comedy. It is really foolish to think that there is a purest form of stand-up comedy, there isn’t!,” says Aadar.
“The only difference with musical comedy is that I can’t just go on stage and try a joke. If I want to do a song that means I am going to eat up at least four minutes of my time. So if it tanks in the first 30 seconds I’ve got three-and-a-half minutes of silence. It’s a massive gamble,” says Aadar on challenges he faces as a stand-up comedian and musician.
Failure has played a very important role in shaping Aadar what he is today. While some shows are hits, many don’t do as well as expected. It is this failure that he has made his steps to achieve success. He has made jokes on everything, whether it is his Bollywood family, dances people do during Ganesh visarjans, weddings in India and Indian five-star hotels. So how does he tell his family that he is going to crack jokes about them?
“I think they have got a pretty decent sense of humour. They have always asked us to be confident and we have always been like that. We have always stuck to our guns and we have made fun of ourselves. I think I have taken it further; I have made it more precise I guess,” adds Aadar.
Aadar is performing at this year’s YouTube FanFest along with the SNG Comedy members. Other than the FanFest, Aadar will also perform a two-man series with Neville Shah and come up with more stand-up musicals. What’s more, you may soon see the Malik brothers on the podcast, ‘The Big Question with SNG Comedy’.