The Riot Act
Some women just don’t have the heart, mind or body to be a lady, says New Yorkbased stand- up comic Radhika Vaz. The 39- year- old was recently back home with her new show Unladylike: The Pitfalls of
Propriety to tickle India’s funny bone. Q. What made you choose comedy? A. Funny movies. 9 to 5 is one that I loved. I remember watching the performances and laughing so hard. I wanted to be Dolly Parton but I didn’t have her chest. Q. What’s challenging about performing on stage? Does it ever scare you? A. There will always be hiccups. I welcome them because they keep things fresh. The bigger problem for performers like me is staying up on stage and holding everyone’s attention. Q. Are you, like your act, unladylike? A. Absolutely. What is ladylike anyway? It’s just a stupid compliment that says, “good job little girl, you are doing all the things society expects of you”. Society’s concept of a lady is universal and silly. Q. Did you chose your stage alter ego as an intentional contrast to your material? A. Yes. The 1950s American housewife exemplified ladylikeness. I would’ve found some excuse to wear that dress. It just so happened that it worked for this show. Q. Do you think as a country, we’re unable to laugh at ourselves? Or has that changed? A. I think we are changing but we are dragging ourselves into the future.