Appurv Gupta, fondly called as Gupta Ji, is known for his simple take on common topics like Maggi and Tea. These jokes have made him extremely likeable. It’s been over 7 years that he is performing and does most of his acts in Hindi. His acts elicit a lot of laughter with his satirical remarks every time he steps on stage. He finds the best humour from his own experiences and narrates stories in a wholesome entertaining way. Appurv is also coming up with is new stand-up ‘Kaafi Wild Hai.’
Humour Sapiens got into a tête-à-tête with Appurv Gupta aka Gupta Ji. Know more about him.
1. How did you develop interest in stand-up comedy? What was your first stage experience like?
Basically, I’m an engineer, when I was in my engineering college, I realized that engineering is not my cup of tea, so I started doing something else. One day, someone told me about Toastmasters International, a non-profit public speaking organization. I got curious about what it is. Since I had a fear of public speaking, I started pursuing toastmasters International and eventually, I realized that I’m a funny guy in the circuit. People around me started coming up to me and telling me that I’m funny. Eventually things got smooth and I realized I can do standup.
My first stage experience of doing a stand-up was very good. Overall during Toastmasters when I went on stage for the first time it was a disaster, a nightmare that I had. My mind was blank, my hands were shivering. It was very tough at the beginning, but the stand-up experience was good because I performed comedy after at least 3 years of being in Toastmasters.
2. How has the journey been so far? Were there any challenges that you had to face?
The journey was very good. I started doing standup in 2012, it has been over 7 and a half years. There were many challenges initially. Not many people knew about what stand-up was. So, I had to brief them about it, I had to teach them. Over a period of time, these challenges changed. Now people have seen stand-up so much that you have to be unique and different for the audience to come and see your show and people to invite you for their events. Every time you get to see a new challenge, but that’s a part of the game, a part of the life you’ve chosen. So, I’m kind of happy about everything.
3. What was the reaction of your family when they got to know about your encounter with stand-up comedy?
My family knew that I’m doing something different other than B.Tech. So, I got the job in my last year, and after I got the offer letter, I told my family that I wanted to do stand-up for some time. They said okay and asked me for a deadline. I told them, give me 2 years, if I’m able to succeed then it’s fine, otherwise I’ll do MBA and do a job in an MNC or some Bank. But luckily, those two years I was able to succeed, and the rest is in front of you all 🙂
4. Do you write your own scripts?
Yes, I do write my own scripts. It’s been 7 years that I’m writing on my own. I think the reason why I started doing standup is that I like making people laugh and doing creative stuff. Hopefully, I will continue writing for myself in future too.
5. How much time did it take for you to develop the content for your video ‘Hotel Wala Experience‘?
The Hotel bit took me around 4 to 5 months to create it wholly, but yes, I’ve been performing this bit for almost 2 years. It took me 2 years to create that kind of performance with all the body language and voice modulation. As far as the content is concerned, I was able to build it around 3 to 5 months.
6. Unlike conventional art forms, comedy as a career is relatively new. How do you see the future of stand-up comedy and open mic culture?
I think comedy is going well. Every second day you’ll see a new video, every next person in engineering college wants to become a standup comedian. It’s a new career choice but yes, the future is kind of good as far as all the OTT platforms are coming and they want to acquire comedy content. They want standup specials on their platform. The future is bright, open mic culture is the beginning of any standup scene. If in your city, there’s no standup happening then definitely open-mic culture is the thing you should look for, but I think yes, right now if you’re talented and can do justice to your artform, then you’ll be able to survive in this field for sure.
7. Any take on regional comedy?
Yes, I believe regional comedy is the next big thing because India is a diverse country, so people want to be as comfortable in their language. If you’re a regional comedian I say that you should focus on doing regional stand-up. You’ll see a tremendous growth in your career as compared to Hindi or English is what I feel.
8. Any experience with annoying audience member? How do you deal with hecklers?
They buy a ticket and attend our show, so I try being a performer and talk to them. I try to handle their issue since they talk to me, I love to talk back. In most cases, I’m able to make sure they have a good time. I haven’t seen any audience in my show who’s irritating or annoying me, so I’m kind of happy. That’s the part of the game though, you have to handle them politely. You have to make sure that they are with you.
9. Any bombing moment you’d like to share?
The bombing moments are as many as your website can be filled with numbers of pages. Many times, I’ve bombed on stage. The more you try and become better, the more experiments you do on stage and you get bombed. There are many bombing moments, like in 2012, I got bombed and thrown out of stage in College and corporate show, they told me to just shut my mouth. It’s just part of my job.
10. Suggestion for upcoming comics?
The only 3 suggestions I have for upcoming comedians are
A) Be original
B) Be hard working
C) Be Persistent
These are the only 3 things for any creative art form or life, to be honest. You’ll see a massive change in your growth and eventually in your life.