• Friday, October 07, 2022

Arts and Culture

Student stand-up comedian Jijeesh K Jaimon brings the laughter with open mic society

COMEDY GOALS: Jijeesh K Jaimon

By: ASJAD NAZIR

THE UK live comedy scene has been red-hot in recent years, with more stand-up talent than ever delivering hilarious shows.

While most of the established stars are filling out big venues, interesting newcomers are kickstarting their journeys at the grassroots level, and one of these talents is Jijeesh K Jaimon.

Born and raised in New Delhi, he moved to the UK earlier this year to pursue a master’s degree in international journalism at Brunel University in London, and to follow his passion of becoming a stand-up comedian. In addition to wanting to making his own mark, he has set up an open mic society at his university to encourage other young comedy talents.

Eastern Eye caught up with a 25-yearold star of the future to find out more.

What first connected you to comedy?
The art of making people smile connected me. Growing up, I was a shy kid in school and frightened of public speaking, but one fine day, a teacher asked me to come up and tell the whole class a joke. After I did that, the response of my classmates was transformative.

Tell us a little more about the Brunel open mic society?
I founded this society in March 2021 while I was in India. The aim was to give students a platform to showcase their talent and get more stage time, something which I missed back in my college days. The pandemic kind of took away all the fun of being out and performing at an open mic. We encourage anyone from the university to join us and polish their material or talent every week on campus.

What are the events you organise?
We started performing at a campus event held at Brunel called the Campus Catch up, where Sanskarsan Verma and I performed for the first time in front of a large audience. Later we had our weekly socials on campus, and the first response was terrific. We managed to attract many students from the university. The one we performed at Floripa on November 14 was our first gig outside campus.

How does performing stand-up comedy make you feel?
It is hard for me to express that feeling, as it’s not only my passion but also my goal to be a stand-up comedian. This is such a jollity wave through my whole body, and it just gives me goosebumps every time I’m on stage and get a laugh.

Which has been your most memorable stage performance?
There are two so far. (Laughs) When I tried it for the very first time, bombed like a newbie and got off the stage in 29 seconds because I was scared to death. Another would be my recent performance at Floripa, as I got more stage time and was able to make everyone laugh and get great feedback.

What would you say are your future hopes in comedy?
I will keep trying until I make it, and even after I make it. I will keep trying as it’s something that I have wanted to do my whole life.

Who is your comedy hero?
It sounds clichéd, but my comedy hero is life, as it’s funny to me – all the experiences, people I meet and troubles I get through teach me one thing or another, and I find that hilarious.

What kind of thing do you find funny as an audience member?
I find dark humour is my taste – subtle jokes on taboos are my favourite kind.

Do you find that comedy helps students, both as performers and audience members?
Comedy helps every individual. People watch comedy to release their stress and feel better, and with the performers, it’s like stress-busting art.

Has being funny ever helped you out in real life?
Oh yes, tons of times. Being funny has always either helped me to mingle with people, or it has gone the wrong way, but I love both situations.

Finally, what inspires you?
Inspiration is like marriage – everyone wants to get married but ends up paying either dowry or alimony. The will to make someone’s day or evening just with humour is what keeps me going.

Eastern Eye

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