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‘Music is like meditation for me’

Sugandha Mishra

Sugandha Mishra

Singer and stand-up comedian Sugandha Mishra believes that every musician or vocalist is a good mimic artist “because music is completely related to sound memory and so as mimicry,” she says. It is no wonder then that her light-hearted tribute to melody queen Lata Mangeshkar by mimicking her went viral sometime back. She was happy that her act could reach the veteran singer, who was thoroughly entertained with it and even expressed the desire to meet Mishra.

Born and brought up in Jalandhar, Mishra is a fourth generation musician. Her training in classical music started when she was four years old from her grandfather, the legendary Pt. Shankar Lal Mishra, disciple of Ustaad Amir Khan Sahib, founder of the Indore Gharana. Mishra, who will be giving her first performance in the city on Sunday at Port Kalavani Stadium, shared her thoughts with Metroplus on music, standup comedy and her journey in to entertainment industry. “There are nine Rasas in music. I am highlighting one of the Rasa, which is the ‘Hasya Rasa’ through musical comedy,” says the young artiste, who is currently pursuing her doctorate in music.

Mishra remembers her first stage performance being at the age of three, in front of Kaifi Azmi, at her school annual day function. She recited a poem, danced wearing a lehenga and fell down on the stage but soon she got up and started dancing again. That was the beginning of the journey of an effortless stage artiste, who was born to perform. Mishra, who is doing a series of TV shows including one with ‘Comedy Nights with Kapil’ says: “I had dreamt of being popular ever since I was a child. Mumbai was always my dream city and I instinctively knew I would be making my way to my dream destination one day.” Hailing from a very cultured, traditional and conservative family, her transition into the entertainment world wasn’t an easy one and neither was her foray into the male-dominated field of comedy.

“I had to compete with all the renowned comedians across India and Pakistan,” she says. Her good looks became her biggest challenge, for she found it difficult to crack jokes on herself or to do toilet humour. “I avoided all of these as I had my limitations. So I thought of doing musical parodies since music is my strength,” she says. After her start in ‘The Great Indian Laughter Challenge – 4’, she quickly rose through the ranks and now performs all over the world.

She also had a brief stint as a radio jokey in Punjab and used to host the morning prime time show which soon became the voice of the station. “There I got to learn a lot. I used to produce my own show in terms of content and creativity and the experience taught me how to be an infotainer,” says Mishra. During her college years, she bagged several prizes at the national level youth festival for singing and mimicry and did 60 voices in four minutes creating a record of some sorts.

With two such strong talents, it would have been easy for Mishra to be in a dilemma about what to focus on. But she’s very clear about her goals. No matter how tired or busy she is, Mishra never misses her ‘Swar – Sadhna’. “Music is like meditation for me and will always be my priority because it is in my blood. But I will never leave comedy because that is my nature. So I will pursue and that’s what people love me for,” says the effervescent entertainer.

(For further details on the concert, contact 0891-2551226 or 8121263199)

Sugandha Mishra will be performing at Port Kalavani Stadium on Sunday at a programme organised by Razzmatazz. The show starts from 7 p.m.


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Printable version | Jul 6, 2022 5:40:21 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/music-is-like-meditation-for-me/article7309932.ece