‘We currently live here in Australia 20 million people on an island the size of North America and start going ‘oooh its getting a bit squishy!’
Hi, I’m Nazeem Hussain. I’m Aamer Rahman.
And we do a show called Fear of a Brown Planet. It’s a stand-up comedy show. I was born in Australia, my parents are from Sri Lanka and I live in Burwood.
I’m from Bangladesh, I was born in Saudi Arabia and now I live in Glen Waverley.
We first started stand-up when we did this competition called Raw Comedy through the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. You do five minutes and then you make it through as many rounds as you can. Aamer beat me and got through to the nationals.
We don’t really brag about that any more.
It’s an honest sort of… Yeah, a very honest way to express yourself directly to a large group of people.
‘…Greeks and Italians came here, they had it tough. And the Asians and the Vietnamese came here, they had it tough. When the Lebanese and the Africans came here they had it tough. So you see Nazeem, um, it’s just your turn.’
I think the strength of our comedy lies in basically the fact that it’s built on almost entirely true stories and our own experiences, which a lot of other people have had.
But for people who aren’t used to it, it can be pretty confronting. Which is funny.
I always get stopped at the airport, and not like just any other brown person, like more than other brown people. I have had bomb testers stop bomb testing someone so they can get me. ‘No, you can go, you sir, you, yes, you …’
It really was an extension of the community and political work that we’d done before and that we keep doing.
I don’t think Australians realise that what we export creates an image of what we are overseas. All our major cultural exports are totally white. People don’t actually know really how diverse, how diverse Australia actually is.
If you ever wake up in hospital and there is not one brown or Asian doctor in that hospital, you should probably get the hell out of there. Coz, you’re not actually in a hospital, you’re just on the set of a mediocre but well loved Australian TV series.
We’ve always loved stand-up comedy. We’ve kind of grown up watching heaps of stand-up comedy.
People talk about their insecurities. We talk about things that, you know, you grapple with.
Oh, he’s a deep guy Nazeem Hussain. Stop it, I knew you were going to do that. I knew it!
That’s gone straight in. (laughs)