Manoj Gajurel, is a name that almost no Nepalis need introduction to. During his career in stand-up comedy spanning over three decades, he has earned fans beyond the country border impersonating several international characters-some among his hits include Narendra Modi, Donald Trump and Dr Tedros Adhanom.
Gajurel, who applauded for immersing the mannerism of character he impersonates, is equally marked for his candid wordplay in and beyond the stage.
The same one-man team appeared as a guest in Desh Sanchar Chautari and talked about his diverse roles ranging from comedy to politics to spirituality making the forum full of laughter.
Prior to his engagement in radio programme ‘Manab Adhikar Sikshya in the fifties (BS), Gajurel had performed stand-up comedies at political forums. ‘As I reprimanded the opposition of the host political party during my performance, I used to receive a huge round of applause, but that for long gave me a false impression that reprimanding somebody is comedy,’ Gajurel reminisced. However, he does not discount the value of these forums contributing for his current-self making.
‘I have sustained a bullet injury at my leg while participating in the people’s movement in 2046 BS’, he recalled adding, ‘I was once an aspirant of leadership of a student union.’ He shared that his inner self was already filled with the sense and art of comedy that destiny planned his walkway to this reach.
He revealed several of his learnings in marking present-self. It took ten years in being a complete artist upright standing above socio-political divisions like caste, religion, political parties while it took twenty years to fully open up with his spiritual inclination.
Divulging into his spiritual inclinations he said he embodies three layers of self- three characters- during any performance: tangible physicality at the stage that every audience marks as Manoj Gajurel, another is a character that he impersonates, and the third one is the conscience. It is this third character-conscience- that keeps him at balance refraining himself from both the extremities- swiping with clapping and toppling with boo.
Comedy, at least for him, has to extend beyond laughter and deliver some meaningful messages. My art has self-censorship, he said, adding ‘I won’t advertise liquor even if paid 50 lacs. It’s not because I am done with money but ethics comes first.’
Over time, he realized that development is not skyscrapers alone. He passionately revealed he is working with the video showing how Nepal should be.