How long had you been performing standup when you came to the festival in 2016?
I had officially started doing stand up comedy in February of 2016, and I did my first booked gig on September 10, 2016.
What did you think of your time here? What did you enjoy the most?
The art museum that is FREE and amazing!!! And that amazing toy store that I think maybe shut down… ? Ah yes, BIG FUN! I saw an AMAZING magic show in there. I really enjoy Cleveland, I have family there. So I am always happy to have a reason to be there!
What was your general feeling upon being announced as a Top 3 performer for the festival?
What have you been doing for standup since then?
Stand up has become the main focus of my life. I am learning to speak the language of ‘joke.’ This is a skill that crosses over in to all other performance aspects of my career. And I just debuted the preview of my one whoa man show, The Alchemy of Bliss on my birthday this year, 8.18.18! That was a huge endeavor, and I am so proud of the product and the official debut will happen towards the end of the year once we finalize the location. I am producing a few stand up shows here in Chicago, but mainly I am focused on my performance.
Over the last year or so, you were able to get aYouTube series funded along with festival alum from Chicago, Vik Pandya and Sabeen Sadiq. Tell us all about Code-Switched! How did it come about? What’s it about?
Code Switched is a series focusing on the lives of young South Asian Americans living in Chicago as normal people. We are cast as the main characters, we are not the extra playing the doctor or the nurse or the Uber driver or guy working at the 7-Eleven. And all the leads are Chicago comedians and improvisers, so the series is very comedy driven. It’s all about the multi-faceted children of immigrant experience. We often find ourselves code-switching as first generationers, and this series showcases that experience.
This project came about all thanks to the writer and director Karan Sunil. He is currently working as a writer on the upcoming CBS show Red Line. Code Switched is currently in post production and we are hoping to have a finished product by the end of this year.
What’s next for Sonal Aggarwal in comedy and overall performing?
I am always performing stand up, and the preview debut of my one whoa man show went really well, so I am excited to keep working on it and make the show even better for the next time I perform it. I would love take the show on a US and world tour. And I would love to be touring with stand up comedy!
Where can people catch you performing or keep up with you in general?
I am hosting a mic at 9.30 every week at the Comedy Bar in Chicago. And, people can keep track of me on my Instagram page (@razor_bliss) and my Facebook artist page. I try to post consistently! I have also created a crowd funding page to create a seed bank to take The Alchemy of Bliss on tour, which people can check out here: