Published : 9:00 am  January 21, 2016 | No comments so far |  |  (567) reads | 


Nazeem Hussain the award winning stand up Australian comedian, actor, and radio presenter of Sri Lankan-Muslim origin took the stage for his first performance in Sri Lanka – ‘NAZEEM HUSSAIN IS LEGALLY BROWN’, at the Sri Lanka Exhibition and Convention Centre recently. The sound of jarring Sinhala music filled the auditorium. As the confused audience looked around, Danu hopped out of a three wheeler which had been driven right inside the auditorium. The loud noise was the tuk-tuk driver’s choice of music. Danu was there to introduce the Star of the evening. With his own witty sense of humour, he made the audience laugh even before the comedian got on stage.

The entrance of Nazeem Hussain was spectacular. This time it was the sound of the Papare bands that filled every corner of the auditorium. The ‘Oh! so familiar’ sounds of our very own Papare band excited the audience so much, that everyone was standing up and looking around wondering what was going to happen next. With the Papare came a parade of tuk-tuks with bright lights flashing. They wound themselves along some of the isles until they came to the steps of the stage. This was definitely a unique start to the show!

Stepping out of one of the tuk- tuk amidst the fanfare and cheering, Nazeem greeted the audience and then the show began. Non-stop for seventy five minutes Nazeem went on and on and on. Lots of his jokes were about being brown in Australia. His illustration of incidents within the ‘brown families’ as he called them, was extremely funny. Then he went on with a little Bollywood humour. He included the Prime Minister’s wife, Mrs Wickremesinghe, who was a special invitee, in many of his jokes, and she responded in a truly sporty manner, and her usual pleasant smile. A particularly funny story was how he was interrogated at an airport in the US and what he had to face because he was a Muslim with a name like Nazeem. Listening to his story, you’d feel sorry for the interrogating officers as Nazeem seemed to have practically driven them round the bend.

Untitled-3Throughout all this he was able to keep the audience totally captivated and laughing non-stop. For seventy five minutes he had the undivided attention of the audience, which was a great achievement I would think! After the show, leaving the auditorium, people were still laughing. “I’m not really brown, this is just vegemite”, was the line lots of the youngsters seemed to have caught on, repeating it to each other and joking about, on their way out. All in all it was a fabulous show, other than for the fact that it started 45 minutes late. Nazeem is best known as creator and star of the hit Australian comedy television show ‘Legally Brown’ which has toured Adelaide, Brisbane, Tasmania, Antwerp, Paris and was sold out in London’s Soho Theatre. We spoke to a few people in the audience to get their opinion of the show.