Seven years ago, a comedian named Sami Shah who lived in Pakistan used to perform live stand-up in various Second Life venues -- including (see above) the post-apocalyptic Wasteland, where he told jokes about the Taliban, terrorism, and other current events topics in the avatar of a chimpanzee, to an audience of robots, cyber-warriors, and other strange denizens. Since then, Sami left Pakistan (in part to escape death threats provoked by his pointed humor about religion), becoming a rising star in his new home of Australia. And last night, he made this awesome announcement on Twitter:
Be in the audience at my BBC Radio 4 show, "A Beginners Guide to Pakistan", 11/05: http://t.co/2CY9X80o0U— Sami Shah (@samishah) April 15, 2015
That's right: A man who got his start performing comedy as an avatar chimp in a futuristic hellscape in the metaverse now has his own radio show on the world's largest and most prestigious radio network. And yes, Sami credits his performances in Second Life as helping kickstart his comedy career. As he told me a couple years ago:
"Comedy in SL saved my comedy career in a way. In Pakistan there just weren't enough venues to get the regular stage time a comedian needs to practice his craft." And being able to perform in SL (as weird as it usually is) helped prepare him for the big time:
"Standup comedy is not like music or the other performance arts; it needs a live audience at all stages (rehearsal, fine tuning, performance). Lacking enough places and audiences in Karachi, performing in SL gave me the regular gigs I needed to get better, even if they were virtual. The beauty of SL those days was that after awhile you stop noticing that you're in an club made of prims with avatars dressed like dragons and cat's with giant cocks. After a while, they just become audiences and the club is just a club."
And now if you're in the UK, you can even attend the recording of his live show (see his Tweet above), which will be broadcast in two parts at a later date (which we can hopefully hear here in the colonies):
@slhamlet Aired at later date. That way we can edit out the snoring and jeering!— Sami Shah (@samishah) April 15, 2015
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