Actor turned stand-up comedian, Balraj has impressed one and all with his spectacular acts as a host on Colors’ Entertainment Ki Raat. He is known for his witty humour and spontaneous one liners.
Currently seen in Comedy Circus, he was part of successful shows in the past namely, ‘The Great Indian Laughter Challenge’, ‘Comedy Circus’, ‘Comedy Nights Bachao 2’ and so on. The desire to thrive and enjoy what he does is what led him to this ‘Passion to Paycheck’ journey, and ever since, not a single day has felt like work for him.
In conversation with IWMBuzz.com, Balraj talks about his journey of becoming a comedian.
He says, “The journey has been fruitful till now. Initially there were difficulties but as I started getting work and name in the industry, it has been great. I was coming from a small town to the city of dreams wherein I had to struggle to make my mark. Slowly, I started getting shows and the industry accepted my work.”
Talking about the struggle period, he adds, “I was not born with a silver spoon; hence I had no Godfather to launch me. I had my struggle period wherein I stayed with a lot of people in a single house for my livelihood. I got a show Comedy ka Maha Muqabala and also won the title but post that for almost 2.5 years (2011-14) I had no work. I was sitting idle at home and my family got tensed. I did not want to take up a random show as I had won a title, but at the same time it was not a big win according to industry. Hence I did not receive a good project. That particular period was very difficult. Later, I decided to take up shows as I was about to run out of money. Although I never faced a period wherein I was left with no money, there was a period wherein I had no work.”
One critical factor that works in Balraj’s favor is the fact that he is a writer as well and pays keen attention to his lines on the show. He has previously written for comedy shows like ‘Comedy Nights Bachao’ and ‘Comedy Nights Live’. Hence Balraj feels the genre to be a tough one. “I believe it is the most difficult genre. If I tell you a joke, you will laugh once but if I tell you the same joke again, you won’t enjoy it. A comedian has to be creative with every punch line and one-liners. With meme getting viral on digital medium, we have been left with fewer jokes. A song can run in loop but a joke can’t be repeated again and again.”
He continues, “I also believe that as we create content for family, there are restrictions on TV in terms of content. We can’t use double meaning jokes, or anything that could hurt any one’s sentiments. I feel sometimes people just make an issue out of nothing. I remember Kiku’s incident wherein he was arrested for playing a fictional character. It was disappointing that a comedian who is innocent was arrested for doing his job of making audience laugh through his act. We sometimes become handicapped when after all the restrictions, our content creativity dies. However, I also feel that these rejections help us to think more and polish our art. There is a a saying ‘Necessity is the mother of invention’, so when there is necessity, more ideas get generated. Comedians are pure hearted as they make people happy.”
On an ending note, he says, “I would tell my fans and people to stay healthy, fit and be happy.”
Good luck, Balraj!