An ardent radio fan – Kennet Radio, of course, but also other stations and a lot Radio 4 – I have become acquainted with the stand-up comedian Sindhu Vee and her hilarious contributions (often, observations from the perspective of the utterly mundane) on programmes such as Have I Got News for You, and I was thrilled that she was performing Alphabet live at the Corn Exchange.
Her 75-minute routine charts the travails of growing up (first in Delhi, the younger daughter of a stereotypically ambitious Indian matriarch), growing from very early on as someone a bit to one side of the prevailing colour, culture, whatever (first in the Philippines) and growing into the doesn’t-quite-fit-don’t-squeeze-me-in Londoner with a Danish husband and totally British kids when that wasn’t the plan; they should have got the whole Indian thing. She touches on family, friends, how she negotiates her marriage, her own prejudices, the (in her delivery) hilarious Indian stereotype and so many recognisable others (faced with people not speaking or understanding English, we do seem to have a tendency to speak louder, gesticulate and pull faces). The impossibility of Vee’s original surname – Venkatanarayanan – even in original India sets the scene.
Always charmingly self-deprecating and creating laughs, nodding recognition and many times applause, Vee sometimes allowed her routine to be crude. The mundane allowed for amusement but not many belly-laughs and sometimes a bit of quiet bafflement. All said, a good, if not completely great, night out.
For fans of Sindhu Vee – me, for one! – she’s using this tour as a warm-up for filming a future special. I’m looking out for it! As ever, The Corn Exchange itself offered a great venue, comfortable seats, and a glass of wine we could take into the theatre!