GRIN AND BEER: URBAN SOLACE, PERRY MENZIES

Some coffee and chortles seem to be the order of the day at most cafes and bars in Bengaluru and everyone seems to be ready to laugh out loud.

Text by Namita Gupta

It’s a laugh riot out there. The stand-up comedy scene is at an all-time high now in Bengaluru. Not only the regular tipplers but everyone seems to be making the most of their weekends at these stand-up gigs. Cafes, restaurants, bars and nightclubs are buzzing with comedy evenings and laugh in the Luru are on the rise. The demand for the genre is seeing an upswing and how. Open mic evenings, Improv and Stand-up gigs are clearly the talk of the town. Comedy is serious business for some of these hotspots that are giving Bengalureans a dose of some fun nights with a funny twist. Whoever said ‘Laughter is the best medicine’, said it right. After all who doesn’t like a good laugh. Meet these catalysts who are changing the way we look at entertainment.

URBAN SOLACE, PERRY MENZIES

One of the pioneers in the Cultural Café space, for eight years now Urban Solace has been curating experiences that leaves everyone touched, moved and inspired…. with experiences that range from poetry to comedy to music, to spirituality, to book readings, to book launches, to book discussions, to discussions on social issues and change, to films, to sharing of experiences as a biker, to healing, to exhibitions of art, photography and installations, to several other experiences. Formally from the advertising industry, Perry believes that he is only the custodian of Urban Solace.

What are the reasons for the growing popularity of these comedy nights with a funny twist?

The new buzz around the comedy scene in Bengaluru is a phase, inspired by the success of comedians such as Kenneth Sebastian, Kannan Gill, Biswa Kalyan Rath, Naveen Richards and Sumukhi Suresh who have all grown to blaze a career for themselves on the national and international stage. All these started their careers as comedians in Urban Solace.

How do you curate something different in stand-up comedy? Name some stand-up comedy artists and shows who have performed here?

Urban Solace has over the years grown to earn its place in the history of comedy in Bengaluru and is now know for and as Bengaluru’s first comedy stage, Bengaluru’s Comedy Cradle, the city’s longest-running weekly comedy show and birthplace of some of India’s most famous comedians. Our newest property in the comedy circuit is “The Urban Solace Comedy Lounge” where we feature individual comedians and teams of comedians who perform their sets to the audience. In this format we could also feature a single comedian who can perform for an hour.

What do people like most about your place?

Our ambience, our food, our wine, our prices, our variety of events – poetry, comedy, music, art, theater, book events, book launches, book readings, discussions, our central location, our range of affordable food, our spectacular view of Ulsoor Lake, our connect with energy fiends, our affirmation cards, our friendly service and homely atmosphere among other things.

What is planned for the year ahead?

We are working on our plans and seeing how the comedy scene in Bengaluru holds up to this excess…..