Be funny about things that you know is one of the most common pieces of advice that young comics are given by more experienced stand-ups. Arnab Chanda, then, should have a wealth of funny stuff at his fingertips purely from the places he’s lived during his 26 years. Born in Pontefract, he moved to India aged six, spent his pubescent years in Saudia Arabia and had his late teens and early twenties in the US before moving back to the UK in 2004 to settle in London.
Having begun his career as a comic doing open mic spots in New York, he has honed his technique (thoroughly professional) and ship-shaped his material (lightly surreal) and is tipped by many to be among the ones to watch. Among his accolades received so far, he was the winner of the Amused Moose Award last year and was the Jongleurs New Act winner in 2005. The previous year he made it to the semi-finals of both the BBC New Comedy Award and the Fringe’s So You Think You’re Funny. He returned to Edinburgh this August partnering Greg McHugh for a half-hour shift of stylish stand-up in a show cutely entitled Tickets Still Available in which Chanda delivered some slick material (including his by now semi-legendary routine about the confusion which can arise if you get a certain chick-pea based dip and a certain group of Palestinian freedom fighters mixed up. We hope that the rumours he is threatening to quit stand-up to concentrate solely on writing are greatly exaggerated.