“Being an entertainer includes knowing how to connect with an audience.” - Joe Nichols
A genuine artist is one who does not limit himself and will fascinate his audience in any situation. The standup production is an emerging platform for many comedians, and we have come across many capable comics in recent times. One such man is Vir Das, who has been entertaining the world not only with his standup shows but also by performing in music concerts and method acting in various movies. His hardwork and willingness to do something in comedy have showcased the performer present in him. So, today we will look through his inspiring life.
Vir Das was born on 31st May 1979 in Dehradun in a humble family comprising his elder sister and parents. Early days of his childhood were in Nigeria, where he studied at the Indian Language School, this helped him to be connected with his motherland while living in another nation. Later, he went to a boarding school in Himachal Pradesh, as his parents wanted their son to get Indian upbringing. Here, he felt connected to the stage and so started taking part in various competitions like debate, quiz and poetry. Not only on stage but also won trophies on the playground in sports like squash and badminton. When the time came for his higher studies, he packed his baggage to attend Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois in Economics and Theatre. This is the place where he mastered the art of comedy and also performed his first standup act which is Brown Men Can’t Hump. His hard work paid off when he received the Richter Scholarship for further studies in theatre and won Colton Performance award in acting. The fellowship helped him to get further training as a method actor at the Moscow Arts theatre for six months. Now he was ready to take a step forward to create a career.
Entertainer in Limelight
The young talent returned to India after completing his education in 2003 to start his standup shows, and this turned out to be a boon to the nation. His wittiness and charm attracted everyone because of which he could perform in over 100 shows in various cities. All his jokes are so connected and humorous that nobody ever leaves his shows without a smile. He did not halt but tried his luck in television and got the opportunity to work two shows on zoom which were 'Is Route Ki Sabhi Linein Mast Hai' and a late-night standup show 'Ek Rahin Vir'. These shows made him a noticeable comedian and later other channels like Star world, SAB TV, STAR One, CNBC-TV18 and CNN-IBN approached him for their shows.
Now it was time for him to showcase his acting skill in film and thus, he played a minor role in 2007 as a junior artist with the movie Namaste London. Even by doing a small character, he made his presence noticeable and thus got a chance to play the leading star in 'Mumbai Salsa'. He was not a familiar face for movie audiences until his appearance in 'Badmash company' and 'Delhi Belly', this movie gave him good exposure and thus became a well-known actor. After being stable in cinema, he started his rock band and named it Alien chutney. This was not an ordinary band as the major highlight is the funny songs, they started this venture with 'Mummy Love', and after that, they have released many albums.
“I don't call myself an actor, I call myself an entertainer because I don't just do one thing.”- John Barrowman
This stunning performer has well balanced his career with films, standup shows and music concerts by giving full dedication to his work and understanding his responsibility towards his audience. Many times, he has failed in showcasing his art but still stood up again and gave a new definition of success to the world where people wait for encouragement or godfathers to reach their ultimate goal.
A step ahead
“As an entertainer, my job is to help people have fun.”- Gloria Estefan
Vir is not only ruling the stage but also is a recognised figure on the online platform which started with his performance on Conan O’Brien’s talk show in 2017, where he talked about US President Donald Trump, religious tolerance and Indians. He expanded his work on his YouTube channel where he shares podcasts, vlogs and stand-up acts. His channel is a fun place which proves to be a great stress buster in hard times. He also used his channel for raising charity for COVID’19 patients and set an example for other YouTubers to help the needy during the pandemic. Other than this, he is also the first Indian comic to have 3 Netflix specials where he speaks about his journey and experience as a mimic. In 2020, he showcased himself as a method actor in a dark comedy series, Hasmukh. Every episode of this outstanding show will give you goosebumps, and make you burst out in laughter.
"Opportunities don't happen. You create them." - Chris Grosser
This enthusiastic star is a true inspiration for all the newcomers and strugglers, as he made his path with great determination and hardwork. Every step he took in his life, he tried to learn from his past and made attempts to improve the future. Mastering the art that you love is always an add on to your career, and similar is what our performer did. It’s said that if God closes one door, he opens other doors for you, you need to believe in yourself and in the same way our renowned artist opened all the doors of the entertainment industry to be what he wanted to be. His life is a valuable lesson to all of us to work on ourselves, to create a better version of ourselves, dream bigger every day and achieve our goal.