Life of a struggling musician

Anila Kurian, DH News Service Feb 28 2018, 21:15 IST
Kenny Sebastian

It was Kenny Sebastian's struggle as a musician that inspired him to write 'Die Trying', the new show on Amazon Prime Video. Though that didn't work out as well as he had expected, he felt like there was a story to tell.

Kenny is now a popular YouTube star and a standup comedian who has been gaining fans all over the country.

However, 'Die Trying' is a fictional account of a couple of artistes who are trying to make it big in the music industry.

There are a couple of reasons why Kenny thinks this is probably a pretty cool show to watch. He says, "It's staged in the coolest city - Bengaluru! There are original songs written which were made possible with the help of the band 'When Chai Met Toast' and it's just a seven-episode series. It's a journey of two idealistic boys who are trying to make it. The level of rejection that folds in and how they realise that there is no way to make it is what makes the story."

As 'Die Trying' is inspired and written by Kenny himself, he says that it wasn't that hard to put it together. "I wanted to write a show about my life. The goal was to show that the bubble an artiste lives in can be your best friend or your worst. The best part if when everyone discourages you but you are determined to make it. But it's bad when you are stuck in the same bubble and don't want to take the feedback and let you grow in the right direction. Not exploring could become your downfall."

Bringing that story to the forefront and getting the right cast was Kenny's priority. "I wanted it to be in Bengaluru to make it believable. I was also particular about the cast. I didn't want my co-actors to be comedians who can act. My comedian friends come in between just to give their punchline and leave. The main cast, apart from me, are professional actors," he explains. Kenny was also keen on giving the other actors more importance than his own dialogues. "They definitely compensated for my temporary level of acting," he laughs.

But being a standup comedian and now an actor must have been a difficult transition. "To be honest, I enjoy directing and being behind the camera. Standup is basically a writer modulating his work. But acting was hard. I had to make sure that my expressions stayed consistent. It was all the more pressurising because I was worried about what the whole scene should look like."

Since he has the experience of being in front of the camera, maybe we might see him in Bollywood or Malayalam industry? He laughs, "No way! I think these industries, especially Malayalam, has some fine actors. I won't be able to do justice to the roles they write." However, Kenny will be back on Amazon Prime Video with Kanan Gill for a live sketch show called 'Sketchy Behaviour' and 'The Improvisers' with Kaneez Surka, Abhish Mathew and Kanan Gill.

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