Stray Factory to perform a comic act at the World Tamil University Youth Conference in Singapore
Step Step Mani, the man in a checked lungi, who has made many laugh with his poker-faced humour will be performing at the World Tamil University Youth Conference in Singapore this month.
Mani, along with his comrades from Stray Factory, will take the stage for 20 minutes for a medley of skits, Step Stepping and stand-up comedy. “We had put up some videos featuring Mani (Venkatesh Harinathan) that have gone viral in Singapore. The organisers of the conference were looking for different aspects that will represent Tamil identity and invited us to perform,” says Mathivanan Rajendran of Stray Factory.
The World Tamil University Youth Conference is a global initiative to create a platform for critical and scholarly discussions on what it means to be a Tamil. “There is a lot of stress on the way you represent your identity. We have constantly tried to build our identities with our Enna da rascalas show, where we appear dressed in lungis and vests and make fun of people who don’t understand what it is to be a Tamilian,” says Mathivanan. Stray Factory’s satiric pieces revolve around current issues. “We tried out many things and realised that current events bring people together,” says Rajiv Rajaram.
“Also, most of our audience are college students and they relate more to such subjects. Sometimes, we also do city-centric humour. This has worked out very well for us.” Step Step Mani will be the highlight of the act. “Step Steping is basically when the actor goes on stage unprepared, asks random questions and improvises on the audience’s answers,” says Venkatesh Harinathan, “It’s a lot of observational humour.”
This apart, the group is busy with a host of other events. “Another edition of Blogologues is coming up and we’re celebrating our second anniversary (July 17) with a six-city tour of Enna da Rascalas. We also have a project coming up with orangestreet, relating to disability issues and we’re also launching ‘Street Studio’, our production house and ‘Ape’, under which we will conduct theatre workshops,” says Mathivanan.