Brighton Magazine

The Brighton Magazine

Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Thursday 04 June 2020

Interview: Comedian Romesh Ranganathan Chats About His Rescheduled Brighton-Bound Show The Cynic's Mixtape

Romesh Ranganathan is Straight Outta Crawley, in West Sussex, and on his last nationwide tour, Irrational, he was pondering whether he has an irrational viewpoint on the world or whether that can be attributed to absolutely everyone else.

This time around - at a rescheduled date at Brighton Dome, on 28th May 2021,  he's putting together The Cynic's Mixtape in which he offers perspectives on the world that are partly incredulous and always hilarious.

"I enjoy puncturing the common point of view," admits Romesh. 

"Sometimes I agree with it but often the common acceptance of certain things is based on facts that I find irritating, so I undermine that and deliberately say things, not to simply be provocative but because I like the reaction to them."

As well as taking his views on tour, Romesh Ranganathan's recent TV credits include a second series of his Sky One sitcom, The Reluctant Landlord, presenting duties on The Ranganation, Judge Romesh, and The Misadventures Of Romesh Ranganathan. 

Away from the small screen, you can read his aforementioned memoir, Straight Outta Crawley, or hear his award-winning podcast, Hip Hop Saved My Life, in which his most recent batch of guests have included rapper Kano, singer-songwriter Michael Kiwanuka and documentary-maker Louis Theroux. 

And now, the man who was also recently voted by The Guardian as the 17th best comedian of the 21st century, is soon to visit Brighton & Eastbourne with his live show which he explains is divided into two distinct parts. 

"The first is looking at different issues such as the environment, a bit about the Liam Neeson thing, and how people respond on social media to the deaths of celebrities which is something I find quite weird. 

"I remember sitting with a friend when Whitney Houston died and he was agonising about what he was going to post online. 

"I said, 'you don't have to worry about that, it's not your business; the world is not waiting to hear what you're going to say.' People end up making these events about themselves." 


In part two of The Cynic's Mixtape, Romesh zeroes in on more personal material, focussing on the relationship he has with his wife and their three children, and fretting about his own existence. 

Which sounds heavier than it actually is. 

"I got a medical when I turned forty as I started to worry about my own mortality not for myself but in terms of my kids. 

"Before, when I was going to the gym or staying on top of fitness, I'd do it for some sort of vanity reason; I've long since abandoned that and have accepted that I'm never going to look good. 

"So the second half is about my reaction to that medical. My wife and I are very happily married but we've got to that point where we're set in our ways a bit. That's the nub of it." 

Romesh acknowledges that we live in interesting but testing times, with the terrain of stand-up comedy one where every utterance a comedian makes comes under extra scrutiny. 

"I don't feel the need to agree with the person I'm watching to enjoy what they're doing. 

"In his last Netflix special, Dave Chappelle said a lot of stuff that I don't agree with but it doesn't stop me laughing about it. 

"Similarly, I'm a massive fan of Bill Burr and in his most recent show he's pretty full on about feminism and how male feminism isn't a thing. 

"I follow the logic of what he's saying and I do find it funny while not necessarily agreeing with him. 

"We do seem to be living in hyper-reactive times now and people feel more ready to be offended than before. 

"As an audience member myself, I don't have that need to agree with everything the comic is saying." 

Romesh works from the standpoint that there will always be someone who doesn't agree with what he's trying to say in his comedy, but as long as he has worked hard on the material, can justify it from every angle and gets the big laughs, he knows he's on the right road. 

"When I start performing material for the first time, that's when I might offend people or push it too far, because I perhaps haven"t expressed what is definitely a good idea elegantly enough. 

"So you play with it, and when the laugh for something is big enough you know that you've found an acceptable line through that way of thinking. 

"But I never write something and think I can't do that because I don't want to get into trouble for it; I tend to just write what I think. I am guided by the laughs." 

Romesh Ranganathan brings The Cynic's Mixtape to Brighton Dome Concert Hall on 28th May 2021. 

by: Mike Cobley & Brian Donaldson




Share    


Creature Creature can, via the imminent release of their first collection of self-penned tracks, Two Finger Tantrum, be labelled the new flag bearers of rock. The Brighton-based five piece have furrowed a new burrow at the summit of an age old genre. With this debut album they will be looking over their shoulders at the also-rans for many years to come.


Migrate Art, the art organisation fundraising to support displaced and homeless people, has partnered with ten major contemporary artists and illustrators to create limited editions of re-usable, reversible face masks.

Returning after four years away, Aidan Knight's penchant for astute observations and personal reflections remains a compelling component of his songwriting.


Young people across the UK will have the chance to find out what it's like to be a record label boss, a film director or a theatre producer through a new podcast series from Lookout that brings together industry professionals from stage, screen and music to share their invaluable insights and experience on how to get into the creative industries.
Credit J. Taylor

Extinction Rebellion Brighton held a socially distanced protest on Hove seafront calling for a bigger public say in how society rebuilds following the coronavirus crisis.
Credit Andrew Gambling

The South Downs National Park photo competition is now open, with a first prize of £250 on offer to the amateur or professional photographer who best captures this year's theme of 'My tranquil haven'.

"In rock music, it's really easy to talk about partying and shagging girls and all that kind of stuff," says Skunk Anansie vocalist Skin. "But for us, what we were singing about had to be deeper, it had to mean something. We had to talk about our experiences and what we were going through."

Throughout COVID-19 isolation, everyone has become aware of the supportive and stimulating power of music. Although many people want to learn, they have no access to musical instruments or tuition - especially with schools and shops currently closed. 
Credit: Andy Sturmey

Barely a year since their debut album Dogrel, Dublin's Fontaines D.C. are set to return with A Hero's Death.

The Rec Rooms is an independent music and comedy venue in Horsham, West Sussex, which was opened by three locals just over eighteen months ago. 

This Saturday, 30th May, Together Co, the Brighton & Hove based charity that exists to end loneliness, is hosting a virtual music festival that will see more than twenty bands perform for free to raise money to help the most vulnerable and isolated.  

Following Brighton Festival's digital programme during lockdown, poet and author Lemn Sissay MBE has confirmed he will return as guest director in 2021. 

Archive search

Search our archives for what's on and gone for the best of this city's theatre music comedy news and much more...







Organising a conference or event in Brighton?
See our Brighton Conference section.
Brighton web design by ...ntd