Born and raised in India, Sindhu Vee has received degrees from Delhi, Oxford (for which she got a Radhakrishnan scholarship), McGill and Chicago Universities. After a very short stint being an Yves San Laurent model, she changed direction putting her qualifications to use with a successful investment banking career. Now in her early forties Sindhu decided it was time to change direction and begin a career in comedy.
Sindhu spoke with The Fountain about her influences and her excitement at performing her debut show, Sandhog.
TF: You are performing at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, how exciting?
It is very exciting indeed. I’m taking my debut hour show Sandhog and I’ve been working towards this since January. I’ve got an excellent venue – The Attic in the Pleasance Courtyard and a great time (4:30). Really couldn’t ask for a better set up!!
TF: Sandhog certainly sounds intriguing, what is the premise?
The show is about how difficult love can be, whether it’s for your kids, spouse or parents, but how it’s also the best thing ever and how much we want love so, hey best get on board. The fact is nothing worthwhile is ever easy, including loving fully. Thank God for humour otherwise how on earth would we ever love or be loved and survive it.
TF: And what drove the project, where did your influences lie?
First and foremost, the driver is stuff I want to talk about which tends to be my daily life. Thankfully, my life is pretty run of the mill – wife, mother, daughter stuff – so people find it relatable…otherwise no one would really get what I was on about.
Stand up comedy that speaks about honest personal issues while also being very funny magnetises me — Richard Pryor, Wanda Sykes, Jo Brand, Louis CK, Billy Connolly, Eddie Izzard, Tig Notaro, Eddie Murphy and so many more. I had never seen live stand up though when I started…..I had only seen two DVDs of Eddie Murphy, so I can’t say these were direct linear influences.
My earliest obsession with comedy was watching The Carol Burnett show. Other kids watched Sesame Street and I watched Carol Burnett. I never discussed it with anyone else — I mean the other kids were discussing the Cookie Monster, so its not like I was in desperate demand, to be honest.
I also ALWAYS loved telling jokes. My mother did it with her friends and I admired how much they flocked to her at any and every social gathering. It felt like a special skill while at the same time being about others and not herself. There is something in that alchemy that is so gratifying to me. An hour of stand up is an hour of immersion in that alchemy, really.
TF: Have you been to the Fringe before, is there anything you are keen to see whilst in Edinburgh?
I’m doing my debut hour everyday and hosting Stand Up and Slam for half the festival so really haven’t made many other plans just yet. I am keen to see my peers shows and drink a lot of whiskey.
TF: And what are your future plans beyond The Fringe?
There are a few things in the pipeline that I will go back to work on once Edinburgh is done:
Firstly, a scripted sit com project that is in 2nd stage of revisions. Its very much based on the kind of stuff I talk about in my show, I am also filming for a Sky short that I’ve written and will be in as well. I am also hoping to take Sandhog on tour and finally I am working on a podcast. I know everyone says the world doesn’t need another podcast but that’s like saying lets not have any new kind of shoe since we have all the shoes already that we could possibly need. What?? That makes no sense. There will always be space for something that’s relatable but told in a different way, with a particular point of view, especially if its also very funny, easy to access and goes straight into your ear without you even having to leave your couch.
Sindhu Vee: Sandhog, Pleasance Courtyard – Attic, 4.30pm, 4th – 26th August (except 13th)