Stand-up comedy Life & Style

Sumukhi Suresh’s one-hour special show: ‘Don’t Tell Amma’...

Laugh riot Sumukhi Suresh By arrangement

Laugh riot Sumukhi Suresh By arrangement  

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Indulge in an hour-long laughter show with Sumukhi Suresh

Two years ago Sumukhi Suresh was at Heart Cup Coffee in Begumpet headlining a comic show. She was to present a 30-minute act but the organisers assumed it was for 45-minutes. “I panicked wondering how could I stay for so long on stage,” she recalls. That was when Sumukhi not only presented a one-hour show but also discovered that she had it in her to pull off one-hour specials. “It was in Hyderabad that I realised I could not only laugh but also make the audience laugh for an hour,” she recalls, as she gets ready to present her one-hour special ‘Don’t Tell Amma... (that I do stand-up)’ for the first time in Hyderabad.

With plenty of jokes to laugh, ‘Don’t Tell Amma’ is her Sangam special. “It is called ‘Don’t Tell’ ... as my mother didn’t know that I do stand-up for a long time,” With small anecdotes and observations (not related to her mother), she talks about her upbringing and other stories. “There are many boys who speak about their mothers but girls have a different equation with their mums,” she shares and calls it a love-hate relationship. “While growing up, we (women) end up not liking our mothers and as we grow older, we realise where we come from. We are not like boys (‘who are either good or bad’) as we are fundamentally grey characters. It takes time for us to understand our mothers and when we become older, we like our mothers more.”

She finds her mother deep and entertaining, and thinks she (Sumukhi) is the calmer one between the two! “I understood that I am a lot like her and have no reason to complain. Sometimes she is irrational and upset and I get it; it is okay.”

Sumukhi was a librarian and chef before she worked in a food laboratory. She also ran a bakery and would often bake cheese cakes and cup cakes. Having done theatre while growing up in Chennai, she auditioned for an improv show assuming it to be a play in Bengaluru. “It turned out to be a comedy show,” she laughs. What started as a hobby developed into a full-fledged craft; She quit her job and revels in different forms of comedy — from improv and sketches to web series and stand-up; she has done it all. “My base in these different forms is performance. I like performing and acting comes naturally. I was a little freaked out with stand-up but when I realised it is also a performance, I have no qualms. Comics from abroad who have been doing comedy for more than 20 years have done all forms of comedy; that is what I wish to achieve.”

She points out that women comics are expected to come with a social message and also how big girls are automatically considered funny! Calling it unfair, she states, “I am consciously breaking the image. When I am on stage, I am a stand-up comedian and want the audience look at me that way.”

Initially, she found herself struggling a bit trying to make her observations relateable but stopped when she realised stand-up is about being honest on stage. “The first stand-up show is special as it is about observations or stories that are extremely close to you. My biggest strength and weakness is that my observations are a little different. It has been a good tour with her shows in Delhi, Gurgoan and Noida seeing most girls bringing their mothers along to watch.”

(‘Don’t Tell Amma... (that I do stand-up)’ by Sumukhi Suresh will be held at Bird Box - Bar and Cafe in Madhapur on August 11 at 7 pm onwards; Tickets: www.bookmyshow.com)

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Printable version | Aug 15, 2019 11:03:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/sumukhi-suresh-likes-doing-different-forms-of-comedy/article28975238.ece

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