In the midst of the perpetual political unrest of Karachi, the professional comedian, Akbar Chaudhry hosted yet another comedy night, showing how he and his team refuse to let a few bad apples cripple the city’s ebb and flow and affect the lives of its people. While some of the performers were hit and miss, the general mood of the event was positive and helped blow off steam, making for a memorable and entertaining night.
The show took place on Friday, the 16th of June, at the MAD School in Zamzama, Karachi. The hall was fully packed, with some latecomers having to find spots on the floor. Nevertheless, the engaging performances of the comedians had everyone glued to their seats.
Most of the performers were downright hilarious. Their jokes and stories were so relatable that many people found themselves having uncontrollable fits of laughter. The host of the night, Akbar Chaudhry, is a master of improvised comedy. His smart and true-to-life humour had an element of relatability, and it kept the audience entertained throughout.
Even though some parts of the show included inappropriate and misogynistic jokes, they seemed to be put together in a way that minimized their problematic aspects, and instead made them preposterously humorous. Since the artists were amateurs, they showed signs of unprofessionalism by occasionally forgetting the script and interacting with the planted audience for cues. Nevertheless, that in itself was comic, as it was presented in phrases that only true comedians could have come up with.
The event started off with humorist Ahsan Yar, an amusing personality who walked the audience through some of the rib-tickling happenings of his life (read: his hilarious attempts at charming girls and inevitably being rejected by them). Then came Munib-ur-Rehman, who produced some laughs, but whose jokes on Amir Liaquat and Nawaz Shareef remained unpopular amongst the major chunk of the audience. The third artist, Nida Fatima Syed, talked about the discrimination faced by her as she was the youngest in her family. She engaged with the audience and made them feel like a part of the show. However, her performance also triggered a few people in the crowd as she made a couple of derogatory jokes about the working class.
The first performer had set the bar so high that the following two artists could not match up to him. However, they had saved the best for last: Umer Ahmed was actually the funniest out of the four. His take on the stereotypical ‘Defence versus Nazimabad’ debate, as well as his failed attempts at getting back with his ex, were so well acted that he left the crowd in hysterics in his fifteen minutes of stage time.
The host had also arranged an interactive and entertaining improv musical performance at the end of the show, right before everyone departed. The show was so well-organized and the placing of the comedians was done so strategically that nobody left the hall, even for a bathroom break. The night ended on a positive note, with the performers reiterating how one should not stop laughing and enjoying life, no matter what mayhem is going on in the outside world.
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