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Comedy writer highlight: Vishnu Vaka

Vishnu Vaka (Instagram here; Facebook here; Twitter here) is a New Jersey-based stand-up (who has been featured with Pete Lee at Carolines, toured with Josh Blue, gone viral on Tik Tok, and recently headlined at the New Brunswick Stress Factory comedy club) who is also an IT engineer and screenwriter. Uprooted from India and nearly 15 schools before the age of 10, his comedy covers weight, family, American citizenship, and more. Check him out as a headliner for Punch Line Philly on April 3.

Below, we made him answer five short questions.

Where are two places (cities, countries) you’d like to perform, and how do you think you’d change your act?

I love performing in NYC, and hope to continue to perform more there. Also, I am looking forward to performing at the Montreal International Comedy Festival. I don’t think I will be changing my act much - I might add some relevant local content based on the current events, but other than that, there’s not much to change.

Are you the funny one in your day job?

It depends, some days I feel smart at my day job and during those times I am the funniest and some days I feel like a dumbass. During those days, I am the quietest one.

What are some terrible things going on in the world that you’ve been able to weave into your comedy?

Currently I am working on a few jokes about the Ukraine war and NATO’s reluctance to help Ukraine. A few of my jokes are related to COVID and weird scenarios we’ve found ourselves during the past couple of years.

How did you come up with your best joke?

Most of my jokes come from my personal experience. One of my jokes went viral on multiple social platforms, including getting 1.9 million views on TikTok. It’s about my parents moving a lot during my childhood, and it came from my personal experience.

Describe your comedy writing process.

I wish I could actually sit down and write my jokes. I usually don’t get that time. I think of my jokes while driving, recite them, and record the audio onto my phone. After practicing multiple times while driving, I take it to the stage and work out the kinks on stage over multiple performances.

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