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From Crowd-work to Comedy Debates, Catch These Fresh New Formats at The Circuit

By DA Staff 28 February 2020

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Only Much Louder‘s brand new property The Circuit, a completely unexpected sort of comedy festival, is coming to a city near you this March! With over 150 comedians, 7,000 minutes of straight LOLs and tickets that start at Rs 99, this festival is a celebration of comedy—across different formats. Including some newer, way more experimental ones that you should now know about.

With so much going on, you’re bound to be a little confused about navigating the festival. Ahead, we decode the different types of formats worked into The Circuit’s line-up of shows, across venues in Delhi, Bengaluru and Mumbai, from 7-15 March.

Standup Comedy

Open mics curated by your favourite comedians, brand new one-hour specials, all-star lineups, trial shows—The Circuit has got it all! Head here for a ready reckoner of the different types of standup shows.

Some notable ones to watch out for:

  • Kanan Gill’s The End?
  • Sahil Shah’s Thak Life
  • Tanmay Bhat’s The Secret Show
  • EIC’s Making Shit Up
  • Anirban Dasgupta Live

Crowd-work Shows

If you’ve enjoyed watching snippets of Rahul Subramanian’s crowd-work show, You and Me, or Daniel Fernandes’ entire crowd-work special on YouTube, come catch them live in action at The Circuit. If you’re not sure what a crowd-work show is, here’s an easy-peasy definition. Essentially, none of the jokes are scripted; instead comedians come up with them based on audience responses—crafting punchlines on the fly!

Apart from Subramanian and Fernandes, other comedians who will be trying to work the crowds (and nothing else) are:

  • Kenny Sebastian
  • Abish Mathew
  • Aakash Mehta
  • Urjita Wani
  • Naveen Richard
  • Shreeja Chaturvedi
  • Sundeep Rao

Haha Games

Where the points don’t matter, but you do!

  • Comedy Tag Team, a format where two competing groups have to crack bangin’ jokes—with the added pressure of a ticking clock
  • Stand-up Games, a game show where comics have to come up with jokes over three gruelling rounds.
  • Quizzing with Comedians, where three comedians pair up with three quizzers to answer some hardcore trivia questions.
  • Comedy on the Spot will try to throw comedians off their game by asking members of the audience to pick a weird/random/bizarre topic, from a bag of weird/random/bizarre topics they’ve never seen before.

The teams for these various games will comprise of comics like:

  • Rohan Joshi
  • Ashish Shakya
  • Shankar Chugani
  • Sejal Bhat
  • Arnav Rao
  • Pavithra Shetty
  • Kritarth Srinivasan

Storytelling

Once upon a time, there was a comedian…

This one is pretty straightforward; different comedians will sit down to narrate seriously funny and not-at-all profound stories from their own lives. This is a great show to attend if you’d like to get up close and personal with your favourite comic.

Some of the comedians on the storytelling lineups include:

  • Biswa Kalyan Rath, with his show Happily Ever After, previously called Not A Comedy Show
  • Rahul Dua
  • Sumaira Shaikh
  • Sapan Verma
  • Urooj Ashfaq
  • Tanmay Bhat

Comedy Debates

A silly-good-fun topic, two teams and an exacting judge (the audience)—comedians will square off against each other to debate a topic they’re given on the spot before a live audience.

Those are who are willing to risk it all in The Big Comedy Debate include:

  • Kaneez Surka
  • Aakash Gupta
  • Sumukhi Suresh
  • Raghav Mandava
  • Aishwarya Mohanraj
  • Anirban Dasgupta
  • Prashasti Singh

Special Showcases

All-women lineups, musical comedy, regional comedy (Marathi, Gujarati, Bengali and Malayali) and even a queer special—The Circuit’s got some star attractions that you’re going to want to watch!

Participating comedians and collectives include:

  • Navin Noronha
  • Saurav Mehta
  • Vaibhav Sethia
  • Andy Reghu
  • Varun Nair
  • Chirayu Mistry
  • Aayushi Jagad
  • Mandar Bhide
  • Trupti Khamkar
  • Sushant Digvikar

This article is in partnership with The Circuit Comedy Festival; head to Insider (Bengaluru, Delhi, Mumbai) for more information and to buy tickets.

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