October 30, 2021 5:30:37 pm
As a child, Saloni Gaur knew she wanted to pursue comedy as her career. Today, the 21-year-old has become a household name for her comic videos that populate our screens. Known for her much-popular characters like Nazma Aapi, the content creator and comedian talked to indianexpress.com in an email interaction about her “remarkable” journey, coping with social media trolls, self-care and more. Excerpts:
From social media videos to TV shows, how has your journey been?
I am humbled to say that my journey has been remarkable throughout as I never imagined getting such incredible opportunities at such a young age. In fact, not even in my wildest dreams had I thought I’ll have my own show on one of the biggest OTT platforms and get to work with such talented people across the globe. Since my childhood, I wanted to do comedy and entertain people and things just fell into place. At present, I am overwhelmed with the magnitude of appreciation that I’ve received from the viewers.
Tell us what really pushed you to pursue comedy as a career. Did you always intend to take it up?
Yes, I realised very early on that I have a knack for mimicry and comedy. My friends and family also constantly appreciated my talent. Hence, I always intended to take up comedy as a career but just like every other Indian middle-class family, financial stability was the top priority for my parents as well. Therefore, as per their wish, I started preparing for the banking examination. But, fortunately, I experimented with comedy at the right juncture in my life which turned out to be one of the best decisions that I’ve taken till date.
Has your family been supportive?
It’s a blessing to have a family like this, they have been really supportive and encouraging since the very beginning. They were holding my hand at every step of my life. As I mentioned, the only thing they were concerned about was ensuring that their children were financially secure. Once they got that clarity they were confident about my choice. In fact, I would say that my brother, Shubham Gaur choosing the same career path really helped me convince my parents. However, my family, especially my mother, still teases me about giving the Bank PO exam and doing a government job to annoy me. Although, I know that they only want me to pursue what I love.
Your characters are all much loved by the audience. What goes into creating those?
Every story, every character I work on takes a lot of hard work and time. I’m always grateful to the audience who follow my content and support my work. I think the only thing that goes into creating those characters is my observation skills. I like to observe my surroundings, people, and if I see something funny it just stays in my mind or I write it down. Hence, mostly all my characters are a mix of what I observe in my neighborhood or around my school/college.
Which is your favourite character among the ones you have played?
Although all of my roles are my favourites and it’s hard to choose, I’d say my favourites are Nazma Aapi and Pados Wali Aunty. These are the roles that I love doing. Nazma Aapi because she was the first proper character that I created and Pados Wali Aunty because I actually have an aunt just like her.
You have personally had social media battles in the past. How careful do you have to be or what are the things you have to keep in mind before posting something?
When I started out, I didn’t realise the gravity of influence that content creators hold. Without much preparation, I sometimes used to open up my camera and blurt out random words but then I got an audience which gave me a little sense of responsibility. Gradually, I realised that one has to be precautious of what they’re saying and that is when I started writing scripts before shooting a video. My intention is always to entertain my audience and never to offend someone knowingly.
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How do you cope with trolls?
The strategy that works for me is that I mostly don’t engage with those comments which demotivate me. Owing to which, trolls don’t affect me much now and sometimes I even get a good laugh reading those creative comments.
As popular as you are, has it also been stressful to keep up? How do you take care of your mental health amid all this?
My career path has played a tremendous role in shaping my personality and help me become the person who can deal with a hectic routine. Therefore, I believe nothing is more important than self-care. I usually do what I love to do which keeps me in a good space mentally. I prefer reading, writing as well as watching online content to keep my mind free. One more thing I follow is whenever I want to clear my mind, I go for a walk and that’s it. All of this makes me happy.
What projects are you working on now?
At this moment, I am working on quite a few projects. Out of them, the two main projects are Amazon Mini TV and a very special web series that’ll come out soon. Apart from that, I do keep on consistently creating content for my audience.
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